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- Main lore areas
All over the prefecture
- Main ingredients used
Glutinous rice, bamboo grass leaves
- History/origin/related events
Glutinous rice wrapped in bamboo leaves, tied with rushes, and steamed. It is a traditional food made in various parts of the prefecture, and is called "chimaki" in Japan, and in some areas it is rolled with bamboo bark. In addition to Akita, chimaki wrapped in bamboo grass can also be found in Niigata, Yamagata, and the Aizu region of Fukushima Prefecture. Kumazasa has long been used as a folk medicine and valued as a cure for all illnesses. Bamboo grass leaves are said to have antibacterial and antiseptic properties, and have long been used to wrap preserved and portable foods. Glutinous rice is less abundant and more expensive than Uruchi rice, so it has long been used as a celebratory food. Sasamaki," or bamboo grass rolls, are a luxury food culture unique to this rich rice-producing region.
In Akita Prefecture, sasamaki used to be an event food for Dragon Boat Festival and Sanaburi (a celebration of the completion of rice planting). In the days when rice planting was done entirely by women, farmers' daughters would return to their hometowns for "sanaburi vacations" and bring sasamaki as a souvenir from their wives' homes.
- Opportunities and times of eating habits
An event food made on Dragon Boat Festival and after rice planting. It is a taste of early summer in Akita.
- How to eat
It is generally eaten by unrolling the bamboo leaves and pouring soybean flour mixed with sugar over it. The method of rolling the bamboo leaves varies from region to region, with three leaves being called "nagamaki" (long roll) and two leaves being called "mijikamaki" (short roll). There are also regional variations in the shape of the bamboo leaves, such as the small triangular shape using one large bamboo leaf in Mikane Town, the long, thin triangular shape in Yurihonjo City, and the flattened triangular shape in Senboku City. In addition to its role as a preserved food, bamboo leaves are also characterized by their refreshing aroma.
- Efforts for Preservation and Succession
(Outline of those who have handed down the tradition, preservation groups, use of SNS, modern efforts such as commercialization, etc.)
At the farmer's inn "Kaiken-no-sato" and in the Owa district of Akita City, a hands-on experience of collecting bamboo leaves and making bamboo grass rolls is being held. They are also sold at supermarkets and roadside stations in the southern part of the prefecture and shipped nationwide.