Hinamatsuri (Japanese Doll Festival / Girls’ Festival)
The 3rd of March is the traditional and representative spring event day called “Hina Matsuri” in Japan.
Hina Matsuri is a special time to pray for the growth and happiness of Japanese girls. It is also called “Peach-Blossom Festival” because in olden times, people believed that peach blossoms had special powers to drive away evil spirits. According to the lunar calendar, peach blossoms were in full bloom around March 3. This is the reason that even today peach blossoms are always displayed together with Japanese dolls called Hina Ningyo (ひな人形).
There is a tradition if the baby is a girl, the parents of the mother give a traditional dolls called Hina-kazari (ひな飾り) to their daughter’s family. Hina-kazari is a traditional dolls of Emperor, Empress, their servants and accessories on the tiered stand.
In very ancient times, display stands used to consist of just two or three tiers but over the years they grew more elaborate and gorgeous. I had 7 tier Hina-kazari at my house and my younger brother always tried to climb up. His heroic story is still α hot topic every year among my family. His heroic story is still a hot topic every year.
This day, parents having daughter invite their families and friends to celebrate this event. They display Hina-kazari and serve guests traditional dishes. When I was a child, my family always celebrated the Hina Matsuri together. So, this event reminds me of my childhood every year.
Home Party Menu Ideas
If you are planning to celebrate this Japanese family event, here are the recipes that we prepare here in Japan and also I recommend for home party.
🌸 Main : Chirashizushi (Chirashi Sushi)
🌸 Soup : Hamaguri no osuimono (Cherrystone clam soup)
🌸 Side dish : Potato Salad / Chawanmushi
🌸 Dessert : Sakura Mochi / Hinaarare / Hishimochi
🌸 Drink : Amazake
Do you know this?
It is important to dismantle the display and put away the dolls as soon as the festival is over. The dolls’ faces are covered with special soft paper and each item is carefully wrapped and retuned to its designated box.
People have traditionally believed that if the dolls are kept out for too long after the festival, the daughter of the family will have a hard time getting married. I remember that my mother was rushing to clean up when the Hinamatsuri was over. I hope her annual effort worked!?