In Nara, Japan, the award-winning Nakatani-dou rice cake shop makes traditional Daifuku mochi, Japanese rice cakes, in a big way: They dramatically knead the dough with large wooden hammers until it’s completely mixed and smooth.
As seen in this clip from Lens on Japan, the dough pounding is a practiced process that relies on the artisans knowing their role in the rhythm so that hammers and hands don’t collide. No doubt, the vocalizations help organize their rapid turn-taking in mochi preparation.
Daifuku mochi is a traditional Japanese confection made with a center of sweet red beans. It can come in a variety of colors and fillings (including ice cream). The green mochi color seen here comes from Japanese mugwort or yomogi.