- Main lore areas
- Main ingredients used
Nozawana, daikon radish, natto, sesame
- History/origin/related events
Kiri-zai" is a local dish from the Uonuma region, made by mixing natto with chopped vegetables. The "kiri-zai" in kiri-zai means "to cut" and "zai" means "dai" in vegetable. Kirizai has a long history, and there is a record that during the Warring States period, samurai warriors used to carry kirizai as food for their troops. The Minamiuonuma region has deep snowfall, and because the region was snowbound for long periods of time during the winter, a culture of preserved foods such as pickles and dried fish, which can be preserved for long periods of time, took root. Natto, a good source of protein, was very valuable at a time when meat and fish were scarce, and it is said that natto was first eaten by people who chopped surplus pickles and vegetables into small pieces and increased the quantity. This dish was born from the wisdom of grandmothers, who used vegetables that were close at hand and used even the scraps carefully. It was also an important nutrient for our ancestors who lived in a harsh natural environment, as it is easy to prepare and provides efficient nutritional intake. The way to make this dish differs slightly from household to household, and there are many variations because it can be made with a variety of foods according to one's taste.
- Opportunities and times of eating habits
There is no specific season, and it is eaten throughout the year. It is eaten not only as an accompaniment to rice, but also as a snack, and is made with vegetables and other ingredients available at that time of the year.
- How to eat
Mix natto with chopped nozawana or carrots. Nozawana pickles are a must, and sometimes takuan pickles are added instead of daikon radish. Natto is also served with ikura (salmon roe), sukimi (tuna), or other sticky foods such as yams, turnips, and okra.
- Efforts for Preservation and Succession
In Minamiuonuma City, there is a group that promotes the town through "Kirizai". They have defined five basic ingredients: nozawana, sesame, salmon, takuan (pickled radish), and natto (fermented soybeans), and have launched a breakfast project called "Minamiuonuma Kirizai".