FOOD CULTURE ANECDOTES Part 1 (4)-22018/01/24（Wed）
♪“Odawara Kamaboko (Boiled Fish Paste made in Odawara)”
☆“Odawara” includes Odawara City and its region which located in western part of Kanagawa Prefecture. “Kamaboko” is a fish-paste loafs which are used many different kinds of fish. The paste is made through process of hickening with startch, molding into pillow shape on a small board. Finally it is baked or steamed. “Kamaboko” is seen in the ancient literature described in 1115. This may be the first description on “Kamaboko”. In end of the Edo period, both of the baked and steamed fish past were made. The baked one was spread over Kansai region including Kyoto and Naniwa (Osaka now). On the other hand, the steamed one was spread over Edo region. Especially “Odawara Kamaboko” was popular in Edo (Tokyo now).
☆Main components of “Odawara Kamaboko” are big smelt-whiting , white croaker and so on, which ate planktons of Sagami Bay. “Kamaboko” is made in various regions of Japan. In Kansai region, conger pike and sword fish are used to make “Kamaboko”, in Chugoku and North-Kyushu regions made with lizardfish and in Tohoku region made with kichiji-rockfish.
In ancient time, people used fish with little value such as small sized fish, bone-abundant fish, bad appearance fish for “Kamaboko”. It contributed as an effective use of marine resources.
♪Hayama Town is well known to be a luxury residential area in Miura Peninsula in Kanagawa Prefecture. ”Hayama Beef” was a high-grade beef born in Hayama Town.
☆“Hayama Beef” began with breeding of two dairymen in 1966, and its production began in 1982. Its meat quality became a reputation. At first, the beef was flagged as “Miura Hayama Beef” in 1980. In 2005 the trademark of “Hayama Beef” which was renamed from “Miura Hayama Beef” to “Hayama Beef” was registered in 2006. Because meat quality is good and the amount of production is small, it is high-grade beef with rare value.
Please come to Hayama Town and eat “Hayama Beef” as a ingredient of steak, “Shabu Shabu”, roast beef and curry.
♪Misaki fishing port at Misaki Town in Miura Penisua is well known as a tuna （“Maguro” in Japanese）landing port . So that “Maguro” landed at Misaki Port is named “Misaki Maguro”.
☆In the Kamakura period, “Maguro” was hated by samurai soldiers, because at that time it was named “Shibi” which meaned to be “dead day”. “Maguro” was estimated to be a bad taste fish in the Muromachi period.
In the Edo period,.the frugality was strongly promoted by Ieyoshi Toukugawa who was the 12th generation of Tokugawa Shogunate. Even such time, common people were allowed to eat “Maguro”, since “Maguro” was a low-drade fish. They ate mainly the red part of Maguro meat (“Akami” in Japanese). Moreover, “Toro” has been abandoned because it is too greasy feeling. Until the early Showa period, “Maguro” was still considered to be low-grade fish. At present, “Maguro” is a high-grade fish and “Toro” (fat part of “Maguro” meat) is evaluated to be the highest-grade in “Maguro” meat.
“Misaki Maguro” which is evaluated as a delicious high-grade “Maguro” among Maguros landed in other fishing ports in Japan.
☆In 1964, the market of Misaki Port was doubled, and when a freezer of -35℃ was installed, a large amount of frozen “Maguro” could be stored. Furthermore, a freezer of -60℃ was made in 1994. Therefore, “Maguro” taken at any sea in the world came to Misaki Port for landing. Misaki Port became one of leading fishing ports in Japan at present. It raises the estimation of Misaki Port.
In addition to “Maguro”, Misaki Port is ranked 2nd to 5th in Japan in landing amount of Kinmedai (alfosino), Kajiki (marlin), Tai (red sea bream) and several other fish. Please come to eat “Misaki Maguro” by all means.
♪“Yokosuka Kaigun Curry” (Yokosuka Navy Curry) which is a local cuisine in Yokosuka City. “Kaigun” means Navy.
☆“Navy Curry” was a military food of the Japan Imperial Navy. In the early Meiji period, for Japanese navy soldiers, beriberi was a serious problem. This was due to general meal centered on white rice in Japan. The navy military doctor, Kanehiro Takagi, was concerned about this problem. Although he referred to British stew, in order to make it taste better suited to Japanese, he planned to make a curry sauce for cooked rice using flour. And, he consided the balance of nutrition, so he added vegetables to curry soup.
“Navy curry” was first adopted by “Navy of Yokosuka” and it was registered as the trade name, “Yokosuka Kaigun Curry” in 2001.
☆Miura Peninsula is full of scenery, history, food culture and charm. When going to Kamakura etc., please enjoy Miura peninsula after a while.
♪The representative of food culture of “Edo (Tokyo now)” in the Edo period were “Sushi”, “Soba” and“Tempura”.
☆“Edo-mae” means the sea in front of “Edo Castle”, that is, it currently corresponds to the sea in Tokyo Bay. In addition, “Edo-mae” also means both “sea foods taken from Tokyo Bay” and “Edo-style cuisines and seasoning”. Main sea foods taken from “Edo-mae” sea were goby, conger eel, octopus, adult yellowtail, shad, flounder, short-neck clam, seaweed, etc which have been used for “Edo-mae Sushi”.
“Edo-mae Sushi” is basically ”Nigiri Sushi (hand-rolled sushi)”. Topping sea foods of “Edo-mae Sushi” are those taken in “Edo-mae” sea” as mentioned above. The rice part of “Edo-mae Sushi” is “vinegared cooked rice” due to the fact that the production of vinegar started in the Edo period. “Nigiri Sushi” was created by Yohei Hanaya and Matsugoro Sakaiya and established in the early Edo period. “Edo-mae Sushi” is deeply related with “Edokko-Katagi”. “Edokko ”means persons who were born and reised in Edo. “Katagi” means “personality”. Especially “Edokko-Katagi” is known to be “Short temper personality”. At first “Edokko” had eaten “vinegard rice” and “raw sea foods” separately, but because of “Edokko-Katagi (short temper)” “Edokko” ate things in which combined rice part with topping raw sea foods. This is the origin of “Edo-mae Sushi (Nigiri Sushi)”. Furthermore, “Edokko” ate up “Nigiri Sushi” in a very short time while standing. And they finished account early and go out. Such attitude was estimated as pure “Edokko”.
☆“Edo Soba” is “buckwheat noodles developed and eaten in Edo”. Three Soba shops were established in Edo whose names were “Sunaba”, “Yabu” and “Sarashina”. The origin of “Sunaba (sandbox in English)” is that around huge sandbox whose sands were used for constructing “Osaka castle”, several Soba shops were open. A Soba shop called “Sunaba” moved to Edo in about 1840. This is said to be the origin of “Sunaba” in Edo. At that time, “Sunaba” in Osaka was also prosperous.
☆“Yabu” means “Bush”. It seems that “Yabu” Soba shop in Edo comes from a “Sunaba” Soba shop in a bush around “Osaka castle”. Although the origin of “Yabu” Soba shop in Edo is a little bit complicated, “Tsutaya” Soba shop at Hongo in Edo is said to be the origin of “Yabu” Soba shop in Edo. Because the grandson of Sichibei Hotta said that his grandfather opened “Kanda Yabu Soba” shop after “Tsutaya”.
☆“Sarashina” Soba shop was originally come from Sarashina region of Shinshu (Nagano Prefecture now). Tahei Nunoya opened a Soba shop named “Shinshu Sarashina Soba Shop ･Nunoya Tahei” at Azabu in Edo in 1790. This is said to be the first “Sarashina” Soba shop in Edo. In this way, with respect to opening up business in Edo of the three Soba shops of “Edo Soba” shops, it is somewhat complicated. However, since deliciousness of Soba-noodles and Soba-Tsuyu (Soba soup) were recognized by “Edokko”, all of the three shops have expanded their business and such good business has been continued so far. To describe briefly the taste of “Tsuyu” of the three shops, it is said that “Yabu”’s “Tsuyu” is somewhat salty, “Sarashina”’s “Tsuyu” somewhat sweet , and “Sunaba”’s “Tsuyu” middle taste between “Yabu”‘s and “Sarashina”’s. Edokko eat Soba noodles without chewing after dipped the noodles little into “Tsuyu”. This was estimated as very good personality of “Edokko”.
☆”Edo Tempura (seafoods and vegetables dipped in batter and deep-fried eaten in Edo)”. If you interpret “Tempura” broadly as ”fried food in oil”, there are many kinds of such things in many regions of Japan. However, the shape of the modern “Tempura” was established in the early Edo period. At that time,“EdoTempura” shops were called “Food Stall (Yatai in Japanese)”. ”Edo-mae Tempura” was defined as that people must use seafoods taken from “ Edo-mae” sea as foodstuff , and fry them with sesame oil. “Edo-Yasai (Edo Vegetables) were also used as foodstuff. Edo people ate such “Tempura” in food stalls as standing-up meal.
☆The word of “Tempura” may be come from “Temperar” in Portuguese, which means that “to add oil and harden”. It was said that when “Ieyasu Tokugawa”,who was the first Shogun established the Edo period, ate “Tempura” of red snapper, he got sick . So, it was said that “Ieyasu died by eating Tempura”. After that, the Edo shogunate family banned eating “Tempura” in “Edo Castle”. However, the true intention of the Edo shogunate may be to prevent the castle from fire caused by tempura oil.
♪You can eat and enjoy the finest “Edo-mae Sushi”, “Edo-Soba” and “Edo-mae Tempura” anywhere in Tokyo even now.
♪Next will be mentioned for the food culture of Fukui, Ishikawa, Toyama and Niigata Prefectures as Food Culture Anecdotes Part 1 (5).
Refer to Food Culture Anecdotes Part 1 (5)-1 (Fukui and Ishikawa Prefectures) 2018/3/6
Refer to FOOD CULTURE ANECDOTES Part 1 (4)-1 (Chiba and Saitama Prefectures).