Monday, December 19, 2011

Iwate's Food Culture (1)

The local culinary specialties of Iwate were produced by the wisdom of rich natural blessing and predecessors.  The east touches the Pacific Ocean and the west obtains the Ōu mountain system which is rich in change of geographical feature.

In old time Iwate, the Sendai (Date) han governed the southern part and the Morioka(Nanbu) han was governing north. Therefore, the difference of each feudal clan system era produced the differences in the area of the food culture of Iwate. On the other hand, in prefecture south area, "the rice cake culture" which used rice spread  and "the grains culture" using Japanese barnyard millet, buckwheat, wheat and the soybean spread in prefecture north area.

Difference in the gastronomic culture by the area

The Northern area: In the northern part area of the prefecture which has fought with a repeated famine in the nature of severe climate and mountains, the foundations of food were cereals.

The typical food  Teuchi Soba (Hand-made Buckwheat Noodles )

Central area: The space of the central area of the prefecture where a paddy field zone spreads for many years is also comparatively large. This area which does not have much snow is cultivating barley and wheat.  And the people devised many way of eating from rice and wheat. 

The typical food Hittsumi (Hatto or Suiton): Hittsumi is the warm pot dishes.  It extends the flour by hand after kneaded thinly and tears it off. Then it puts chicken, burdocks, carrots, mushrooms and spring onions into the pot that boiled up with soy sauce flavor.

Ōu Mountain System area: This area of the Akita prefecture border is a deep heavy snowfall area. Thus local staple food which is not done of the wheat is foxtail millet and barnyard grass. The people often cook the miso soup which put fermented soybeans into mushroom soup stock.

The typical food ➡ Natto Jiru (Fermented Soybeans Soup) 

Sanriku Coast: In the sea of the Sanriku offing where the Oyashio Current and the Kuroshio Current crossed, the people brought about the coast food culture that they used fishery products and the seaweed for abundantly.

The typical food Donko and Tara Jiru (Dark Sleeper and Cod Stew)

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