All eyes on chestnuts in Japanese style sweets!
Autumn in Japan is the season of harvest. One of the most popular is the sweet and hearty chestnut. Since chestnuts were cultivated in the Jomon period, Japanese have always explored delicious ways to eat them. Here, we introduce you to some representative seasonal Japanese style sweets using chestnuts which you can get at your travel destinations or department stores.
A long-established store boasting over 200 years of history “Sakurai Kanseido” (Obusemachi, Nagano Prefecture)
Chestnut cultivation in Obuse, Shinshu began in the Muromachi period about 600 years ago. Obuse is a town 30 minutes away by car from the JR Nagano Station, and Shibu Onsen Hot Spring, which is famous for monkeys taking baths in them. It is said that Sakurai Kanseido, founded in 1808, first made the “chestnut rakugan (hard candy).” Kanseido's representative sweets are “Jun Kurikanoko” and “Jun Kuri Yokan (jelly).” But they are also trying out new tastes, such as “Kuri Dorayaki” and “Macaron.”
Jun Kurikanoko (1,296 yen per 270 gram can)
It is a “Kinton” of elegant sweetness, which is chestnut paste made from chestnuts and sugar alone, kneaded with chestnut grains. You can taste the simple goodness of chestnuts.
Kuri Dorayaki Pancake (195 yen each)
Jam made from only chestnuts and sugar is sandwiched between their special slightly salty pancakes, making up a moderately sweet confectionary with chestnuts the main ingredient.
“Sakurai Kanseido Main Shop”
●774, Obuse, Obusemachi, Kamitakai-gun, Nagano Prefecture
●Along with shops within Nagano, their products are sold at department stores all over Japan
A famous shop located in the birthplace of the Kurikinton - “Onkurigashi Syogetsudo” (Nakatsugawa, Gifu Prefecture)
On the way from Nagoya to Kiso, Nakatsugawa-City and Ena-City in the southeastern part of Gifu Prefecture, are known as high quality chestnut production areas. Nakatsugawa-City, especially, is said to be the “birthplace of Kurikinton (candied chestnuts).” Syogetsudo, which first started business in 1907, has a representative confectionary called “Kurikinton.” Recently, their “Kurizutusmi,” which are chestnuts covered in kuzu (arrowroot powder) jelly are popular, too.
Kurikinton (1,539 yen for a box of 6)
It is made by steaming fresh chestnuts, then adding an appropriate amount of sugar and cooking them thoroughly in a large cooker, and carefully squeezing each one in tea napkins. You can fully enjoy the simple flavor of chestnuts.
Kurizutsumi (248 yen each; 1,706 yen for a box of 6)
The moist and smooth Kurikinton is covered in Kuzu, resulting in a glutinous texture. You will enjoy the rich chestnut flavor.
●2-5-29, Otamachi, Nakatsugawa-shi, Gifu Prefecture
●Besides Main store, their products are sold at Tobu Department Store Ikebukuro Shop, Isetan Urawa Shop, and Matsuya Ginza
Making confectionary with one of Japan's leading brand chestnuts—“Tanba Kurikasho Daifukudou” (Sasayama, Hyogo Prefecture)
Misty mountain ranges, pure mountain water, and drastic changes in temperature. An hour away by train from Osaka, the Tanba area is Japan's representative region that produces chestnuts. Daifukudou, established in 1893, has a signature confectionary which is made from the Tanba Sasayama chestnuts. You will taste the sweet and rich flavor of chestnuts. They are sold only in Sasayama, so when you go on a trip to Kinosaki Onsen Hot Spring, famous for their open air baths, or to Fukuchiyama, a castle town, why not stop by?
Kurimochi (200 yen each)
Jam made from crushed Tanba Chestnuts is wrapped around soft, fresh rice cake.
Kurikenjo (300 yen each)
It is a luxurious confectionary, a whole shibukawani (candied chestnuts with inner skin) wrapped in chestnut jam, and then squeezed with a tea napkin.
“Tanba Kurikasho Daifukudou”
●121-2, Kitashinmachi, Sasayama-shi, Hyogo Prefecture
*The above information was last updated August 22, 2017. For further details, please contact the facilities directly.
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