Readers of this website are likely to be familiar with nikuman, the steamed rice pastry often made with meat filling. In the past we have reported on the delicious slime shaped nikuman and Puyo Puyo themed nikuman. One thing to note about nikuman is that their name is made up of two parts niku (meat) and man (steamed bread) so that if you change the filling the suffix remains the same giving you pizzaman or curryman.
Universal Studios Japan took notice of how this is linguistically similar to the suffixes often used for superheroes in English and developed Spiderman (here the man would be pronounced kind of like a Jamacian accented mon).
Unlike previous USJ inventions Snoopyman, filled with custard, and HelloKittyman, filled with cheese and pork, Spiderman opens the floodgates to a slew of hackneyed names for the steamy snacks which I will enjoy making later.
First, the Spiderman is filled with pork and vegetables typical of a nikuman but what sets it apart is the gelatin noodles used to simulate Spidey’s webbing and the amazingly vibrant red color used to give the bun the appearance of Spiderman’s head. These are only sold inside the USJ park and as such quite expensive at 400 yen (US$) a pop.
With universal studio’s licenses to movies there’s no telling how far they will go with this new found theme; Ironman with iron rich foods inside like liver and spinach; X-man with scrambled eggs inside; or if they want to get really edgy they could have an Outbreak themed series of nikuman with Dustin Hoffman and Morgan Freeman in little yellow contamination suits surrounded by green Motabaman with red and green jelly inside. It could go on forever.
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Source: UNIVERSAL STUDIOS JAPAN (Japanese)