At the hanami picnic I hosted a few weeks ago, one of the foods I served was dango. Dango are sort of like mochi; they are made with rice flour and shaped in balls, and then impaled on a skewer. There are usually three to four dango on a skewer. Usually the dango are coated with a syrup made from soy sauce, sugar, and mirin and then grilled before eaten.
There are variations on dango flavorings. Sometimes matcha (powdered green tea) is added, and in the norther island of Hokkaido, potato flour is used instead of rice flour. Sometimes they are coated or filled with red bean paste.
I've never attempted to make them myself, but I found this recipe online and it looks easy enough! For those who wish to buy prepared dango but don't have access to a Japanese grocery, Mitsuwa's online store offers dango covered with sesame seed paste.
Related: DIY Mochi Ice Cream Balls
(Image: Kathryn Hill)