- Main lore areas
All over the prefecture
- Main ingredients used
Biwa trout, rice, carrots, shiitake mushrooms, etc.
- History/origin/related events
Ame no Io Gohan" is rice cooked with Biwa trout, a species endemic to Lake Biwa. Ame-no-io" is another name for loach trout, which come up to the lake to spawn when the rains come and the rivers rise.
In 1998, "Ame no io gohan" (rice with rice) using a whole loach trout, which spawns in the fall, was selected as one of Shiga Prefecture's Intangible Folk Cultural Assets of Shiga Prefecture. The recipe and ingredients differ among the Koto, Kosai, Kohoku, and Konan regions, with some adding fillets of loquat trout, while others use carrots, shiitake mushrooms, mushrooms, fried tofu, and other ingredients. In the Konan and Kosei regions, it is called "Ame no Io Gohan" (rice with rice cake), while in the Kohoku region, it is called "Masu Gohan" (rice with trout). Biwa trout were "phantom fish" that were difficult to catch with old-fashioned fishing gear because they lived deep in the lake. The rare chance for the people of the village to encounter this fantastic fish was in the fall, when they come up the river to spawn. It is said that this dish was devised in order to make the Miwamasu more tasty because the fat of the Miwamasu in the fall has decreased.
- Opportunities and times of eating habits
Because it is made from the juvenile loach trout that spawn in the fall, it is mainly eaten in the fall.
- How to eat
Ame-no-Io Gohan" is a typical autumn dish in Shiga Prefecture, and was prepared in a large pot when a large number of people gathered. When cooked in a cauldron, the loach trout is placed directly on top of the rice without the roe, and a little soy sauce and sake is added. When the rice is finished cooking, the head of the fish is lifted up and shaken, and only the meat and roe fall out, leaving only the head and bones. Mix this meat and roe into the rice. The fish is then mixed with rice, and chopped green onions are placed on top. In recent years, the method of cooking the fish after filleting it has become popular. In recent years, the method of cooking trout in a rice cooker after pre-cooking the trout has become popular, using frozen fillets not only in the fall, but also throughout the year.
- Efforts for Preservation and Succession
Although "Ame-no-Io Gohan" is no longer made at home, it is passed on to children through school lunches and cooking classes.