Red bean paste - the traditional Japanese sweet
Red bean is a traditional Japanese sweet that isn't quite as sweet as most western desserts. It has a mild, smoothe flavor that somehow strikes me as being very Japanese. I usually saw this eaten as a snack rather than as a full fledged dessert course, but it could very well be both. Red beans usually come in some form of baked good. Shown here it is served in cake, called Agi-Manju, but it is also very common to serve it in a heavy bread, called An-Pan. Pan is the word for bread in Japanese, directly incorporated into their language from Portuguese, who introduced bread to Japan.