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Image Source : Niigata Tourist Association
- Main lore areas
All over Niigata Prefecture
- Main ingredients used
- History/origin/related events
Igoneri" is a local dish representative of Sado Island, made from the Japanese rush grass harvested from the Sea of Japan. It was made in every household from fall to winter. Igogusa is a type of seaweed that grows on large seaweed such as kombu and hondawara, and is widely used mainly on the Sea of Japan side. It is called "igo" in the Sado region and "ego" in the Niigata region. It is made by boiling and kneading sun-dried dried sea weed while adjusting the amount of water, then spreading it thinly and cooling it down to harden it. It is served with ginger soy sauce or vinegared miso. It is characterized by its firm texture and has a slight aroma of the sea. It is said that "igoneri" was introduced from Kyushu's "okkyuto culture" to Sado Island from Hakata via Wajima on the Noto Peninsula, and then to various places in Echigo through the traffic of Kitamae ships and fishing boats.
- Opportunities and times of eating habits
From mid-July to August, the rice grass is harvested, dried, and made into "igoneri" as needed. Originally, it was made by households from fall to winter and eaten mainly for weddings and funerals, but recently, as manufacturers have begun to make it throughout the year, it has become a year-round food and has changed to an everyday food.
- How to eat
In the Sado region, the traditional style is to roll igoneri, which is spread thinly like a board, and cut into thin strips like tokoro-ten. It is served with condiments such as green onions and ginger, and soy sauce. On the other hand, on the mainland, the mainstay is to cut the Igogusa into thin slices and eat them with ponzu (Japanese sauce made from soy sauce and vinegar) or vinegared miso (soybean paste). Recently, a new way of eating it has been invented, such as adding kuromitsu kinako (soybean flour flavored with black soybean paste) or vanilla ice cream. Ama-machi in Aikawa has a dish called "Ama-machi soba," which is thinly sliced "igoneri" and served with men-tsuyu (soy sauce).
- Efforts for Preservation and Succession
Although the number of households making igoneri has decreased, there are workshops held by local mothers to pass on the food culture of igoneri. Since the manufacturer sells igoneri throughout the year, it can be purchased anytime at retail stores, etc., and can be easily eaten.