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What is Hina Matsuri

What is Hina Matsuri?

What is Hina Matsuri?

On the 3rd of March, Japanese people celebrate all girls and they celebrate girls by enjoying beautiful dolls and special Japanese food. This festival is something that dates all the way back to the Edo Period which means it has been celebrated for over 300 years.

What is Hina Matsuri(picture source: https://mamanoko.jp/articles/29011)

Families that have a daughter celebrate Hina Matsuri to with for the healthy growth and to wish for their happiness. Japanese people decorate their homes with dolls called Hina Ningyo and families will cook up special food for this occasion. The Hina Matsuri has another name and that is Momo no Sekku and this translates into Peach festival. The reason why it is called this is because the beginning of March is when peaches start to blossom. They are at their peak of growing and peach trees are known for being a sacred tree that has the power to purge evil spirits.

What is Hina Matsuri(picture source: https://nipponbiyori.com/hina-matsuri-japanese-confectionery/)

So what exactly is a Hina Ningyo? A hina ningyo is not just any doll it is dressed in beautiful court dresses from the Heian period. The hina ningyo are usually displayed on five or seven tiered stands and they usually imitate the emperor, empress and their servants. People believe that these dolls protect them from illness and bad luck. It depends on the religion but usually the grandparents on the mother’s side of the family will buy the dolls for their granddaughter/s.

What is Hina Matsuri(picture source: https://www.athome.co.jp/vox/life/68458/pages2/)

There are three different foods that are served for the hina matsuri. One is hina arare which are colourful rice crackers. They are usually coloured in yellow, white, pink and green colours. These crackers are regarded to be healthy as they contain a lot of protein. And by serving these crackers it is a way to wish the daughter a healthy life for the year.

The second food that is served is Hishi mochi which are round rice cakes that are on a stick and there are three different layers that are coloured differently. The three coloured layers are usually pink, white and green. The green is meant to represent health and longevity, the pink is meant to ward off the evil spirits and the white represents purity.

The other dish that is served is chirashi sushi which is sushi except it is not in a sushi form. usually there is sushi rice and then on top it is decorated with shrimp, lotus root, ikura, and strings of egg and some other ingredients.

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