- Main lore areas
Southern region, Shikagyo region
- Main ingredients used
Glutinous rice, Uruchi rice
- History/origin/related events
Ibaraki Prefecture is still famous for its rice fields and is one of the best rice-producing regions in Japan. Taking advantage of its mild year-round climate and rich water quality, rice cultivation has flourished in Ibaraki since ancient times. Ibaraki Prefecture has also long been known for its glutinous rice, which is used not only to make rice cakes, but also to make other dishes such as rice cakes.
Glutinous rice is not only used to make rice cakes, but is also used to make sekihan (red rice) and okowa (glutinous rice with red beans), and is often eaten on New Year's Day and other special occasions. One of the most popular rice cake dishes in Ibaraki Prefecture is "tagane-mochi. The word "tagane" is said to be an archaic word for "shitogi," which is made by soaking raw rice in water and then pounding it into a firm dough.
Tagane mochi is a local dish widely eaten in Ibaraki Prefecture, especially in the southern part of the prefecture. The southern part of Ibaraki Prefecture is a granary surrounded by Kasumigaura, the second largest lake in Japan, and the Tone River, which is said to have led to the production of a variety of rice cakes, including "tagane mochi," made with glutinous and non-glutinous rice that is abundant in the area.
Tagane mochi is made by mixing glutinous rice with Uruchi rice, which is usually eaten as rice. The shape is flat and oval like a sea cucumber, and they are eaten baked or fried. The rice cake is made by adding beans, aonori (green laver), or other ingredients, and each household has its own unique way of making tagane mochi.
In Ishioka City and Kasumigaura City, they are traditionally made with aonori (green laver). In Ogo, in the northern part of the prefecture, soybeans and white sesame seeds are added, and in Hokota City, in the Kagyo region, shiso seeds are added. It seems that each region of the prefecture had its own version of "tagane mochi.
- Opportunities and times of eating habits
Like other rice cakes, tagane mochi is most commonly eaten at New Year's. In Ishioka City, tagane mochi is sold at confectionery stores and is also eaten on a daily basis. Even now, when New Year's Day approaches, many supermarkets and roadside stations sell them.
- How to eat
Glutinous rice that has been washed and soaked in water overnight is combined with Uruchi rice that has been soaked in water for one hour and steamed in a steamer for one hour. Then, while pounding with a rice cake pounder, mix in aonori (green laver), salt, white sesame seeds, and other ingredients, and shape into a sea cucumber. Before it becomes too hard, cut it into 1 cm thick slices, bake, and eat. When eaten, the rice balls and beans have a chewy texture. You can also enjoy the flavor of nori (seaweed).
It is often eaten simply with soy sauce, but it is sometimes added to ozoni.
Thinly sliced "tagane mochi" can also be deep-fried and eaten like a rice cracker.
- Efforts for Preservation and Succession
(Outline of the people who have passed down the tradition, preservation groups, use of SNS, modern efforts such as commercialization, etc.)
In addition to being made at home, they can be purchased at confectionary stores (in Ishioka City) and, depending on the region, at roadside stations and supermarkets. There are various types of "Tagane mochi" sold, including those with green laver, soybeans, green soybeans, sesame, and shiso seeds, depending on the region.
source : Reiko Arata, Professor, Tokiwa University