Babahera Ice「ババヘラアイス」 is an ice cream that is well known in Akita. These are usually sold from pushcarts along the streets by old ladies dressed in bright yellow and red aprons and donning yellow headscarves.
The name “Babahera” comes from the Japanese words baba「ババ」, a nickname for old women or grandmothers and hera「ヘラ」, which is the ice cream scoop or spatula.
The uniqueness of these roadside vendors is that they scoop the ice cream into the shape of a rose! There is only one flavour available – banana, which is not in my list of favourites.
The ice cream wasn’t of the creamy kind and its texture felt more like a slushee. Tastewise, the Minions would probably enjoy the banana flavour more than I did, but it was still an icy treat to cool you down on a hot summer’s day! One serving of babahera ice costs ¥200.
I had seen many of these grannies selling babahera ice during my walk in Akita City, but only this particular lady, who had strategically parked her cart along the pedestrian arcade in front of the JR Akita station, was a spritely character and she did a little dance whilst scooping the ice cream! If you are visiting Akita, do look out for this friendly granny with a big warm smile!