overall: 55 mm x 460 mm x 100 mm; 2 3/16 in x 18 1/8 in x 3 15/16 in
early 20th century
Known as “sembei kata” in Japanese, this baking mold is used to bake the cookie wafer to be folded into the fortune cookie shape that we know today. Engraved on the object is an illustration of Mount Fuji and the Japanese letters for “Japan tea.” It was donated to the Smithsonian by Gary T. Ono in honor of the Suyeichi and Owai Okamura Family and the Benkyodo Company.
Commissioned by Makoto Hagiwara of Golden Gate Park’s Japanese Tea Garden, the Benkyodo Company produced the first modern fortune cookie in the early 1900s.
Currently not on view
Gift of Gary Ono in honor of the Suyeichi & Owai Okamura family of Benkyodo Company