- Main lore areas
- Main ingredients used
Rice flour, sugar
- History/origin/related events
Karasumi is said to have been made in the Tono region around the end of the Edo period for the Peach Festival.
"Karasumi" is a well-known delicacy made from salted and dried ovaries of mullet and other fish, but this is a Japanese confectionary made from kneaded rice flour and steamed. The characteristic feature of karasumi is its mountain-shaped cross section. The two peaks of the mountain are the most common, but in rare cases there are three. It is said that the mountain shape was created to imitate Mt. Fuji in the hope that the child would be the happiest in Japan.
There are various theories as to the origin of the name. One theory is that the name was derived from the fact that karasu, a luxury delicacy, was so precious in this region, which is far from the sea, that it was replaced by a confection similar in shape to it. The other theory is that the name is derived from its similarity in shape to the Chinese ink stick, which served as both a paperweight and a tin in the Tang Dynasty.
- Opportunities and times of eating habits
In the Tono region, it is popular as an offering for the Peach Festival and as an everyday sweet.
"Gandochi" is a rare event held in some areas during Hinamatsuri (Girls' Day), in which children visit houses in the community, asking to see "Ohinasama" (dolls) and receive sweets from them. In the old days, "karasumi" was served to the children at this "gando-uchi. Today, karasu can be purchased throughout the year at direct sales of agricultural products in the Tono area, at roadside stations, and on the Internet.
- How to eat
Rice flour is kneaded with sugar, made into sticks, placed in a special wooden mold, and steamed for 15 to 30 minutes after unmolding. The standard color is white, but there are many variations, such as using brown sugar instead of sugar, or kneading mugwort, walnuts, sesame, adzuki beans, etc. into the dough.
- Efforts for Preservation and Succession
In Ena City, the cooking process is introduced on video on the Internet in an effort to pass down the tradition. In addition, it has appeared on school lunch menus at elementary schools in the city as a way of learning about local production for local consumption and local cuisine.