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Today, I introduce a traditional specialty in Nishiizu Town, Shizuoka. Some of you may know Aramaki salmon, the salted salmon for preservation, but we have “Shio-Katsuo”, the salted bonito as preservative food during New Year’s days. It is processed almost in the same way as Aramaki salmon but not coated with salt when sold in the market. It is washed clean in salt water and hung for several weeks to get dried up. And traditionally, some people still deck it on the door with Shinto straw decoration during the New Year as one of the good-luck charms .
So, how is “Shio-Katsuo” cooked ?
I like it in “Ochazuke”. As you know, bonitos are often processed for soup stocks for Soba and various Japanese traditional foods. No wonder it tastes splendid ! But I also know that it is not favorable for us, tourists, to buy the whole dried bonito not yet ready to cook and eat. So, I introduce today some of the products that you can enjoy the tradition of Nishiizu Town more easily. They carry bonitos in, by the way, from Yaizu Port, Shizuoka prefecture, well-known for the largest catch of bonitos in Japan !
Now, the first product I take up is the one in the left picture. This is for Ochazuke I mentioned before. I found it in one of the souvenir shops in Izu area. You put it as much as is necessary on the rice and pour hot green tea on it. I did it and could feel the lovely smell of bonito very soon. I took the first sip. Not fishy at all as I had imagined. The flavor of bonito seemed to have been brought out to the utmost together with other ingredients such as seaweeds, sesame and dried lavers.
The most traditional way of cooking is simply to grill it. It may taste a little bit salty but very good with Japanese Sake.＾＾ To enjoy the grilled Shio-Katsuo, you can find products as below :
These products are from Kanesa Katsuobushi (Dried-bonito) Store in Nishiizu Town. You can buy them through their website. Kanesa Katsuobushi Store was established in 1882 and has been introduced through various media to this day. It is also recommendable to have it in soup or pickled. You can see the image from the attached PDF.
This will be a very good opportunity you can go through our tradition in Shizuoka.＾＾
Now, this is my last report in 2010. I’ll see you on Jan 4, maybe.
I thank all of you for catching my blog. Hope you have a really Happy New Year !(〃▽〃)
See you next year !＾＾
“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English blog website for events & sightseeing. Always with you ! ＾＾
I left “Koibito Misaki” at 10:32 by Tokai Bus again to one of my favorite sightseeing spots in western Izu area, “Dogashima”. Only 30 minute boarding.
Getting off the bus at Dogashima, I stretched out my arms to the sky. Scent of sea breeze. The sun had come up right above my head. I found a 7-eleven just in front of the bus stop and got into it to buy a bottle of cold oolong tea.
Beside the 7-eleven was a tourist information center. I stepped in it to talk with a lady. She told me that visitors from abroad had been getting increased. No wonder I found some in the 7-eleven. She showed me a booklet written in English, Chinese and Korean. Be sure to get it !
Now, time to walk around ! Beyond the road is the sea. Passing through the underground walkway, I stood just right there. See the tour boats ? The rocky hill over there ? I headed for it to find a magnificent view.
Now, I show you some pictures. On a fine day, nothing would get the better of it. I really love this place !
I took a deep breath on the top. Far on the beach, I could see many people bathing or swimming in the sea. Peaceful moment. I leaned back against the railing and spent a few minutes thinking nothing.
On this rocky hill, you will find some trails to walk around and some of them lead to the main sightseeing spot designated as a national natural treasure, “Tensodo”, if literally translated, “a cave with a skylight window”. Though I stood around it to see the inside, you can take the boat to tour in the cave.
Walking back along the pathway, I was talked by some ladies who sold beautiful seashells for souvenirs, not bad, though I bought none of them.
Back again in front of 7-eleven, I bought a coke to cool myself. Soaked in sweat. Too hot anyway but I felt my stomach growling. Though there were some restaurants around Dogashima, I dared go to Matsuzaki because I thought I could have more choice. Only 8 minutes from Dogashima. Matsuzaki is very famous as a town of spas.
In Matsuzaki, I walked along the seashore to find a good restaurant, where again many people were enjoying swimming, only to find nothing for a regular holiday. I had no alternative but to get in a Familymart to buy some snacks for my stomach……(´；ω；｀)
Now, time to leave for Shimoda, the final destination of this tour. Fortunately I could catch the express bus. Only 3 stops for 40 minutes.
I got on it, fully air-conditioned, and opened my files and papers to put all information together. Heavy eyes. Just as in the cradle, I fell into a deep sleep.
Next time, I’ll report Shimoda Ropeway and Mt. Nesugata.
Dogashima ： 30 minutes by Toki Bus from Lover's Cape
Information about the Tour boat
Time table of Tokai Bus from Dogashima to Shimoda
Time table of Tokai Bus form Matsuzaki to Shimoda ( the left line )
“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English website for sightseeing, always with you ! ＾＾