NOURISHING ESSENTIALS (October 2023) - Yuzu: Japan’s Beloved Citrus (柚子)



Dried Kito Yuzu Peel (徳島県産きざみゆず)
Producer: Yamashiroya
Prefecture: Kyoto
Ingredients: Yuzu (Tokushima)
Suggested use:Add yuzu zest to any of your dishes including soups, udon, soba, steamed egg custards, pickles, aemono (dressed dishes), sauces, desserts, etc
Storage: Room temperature.

Kito yuzu are a special type of yuzu grown in the Kito region of Tokushima Prefecture, located at the southern foot of Mt Tsurugi (western Japan’s second tallest mountain). They’re characterized by their vivid color, rich aroma and noticeable sourness when compared to other yuzu. Their thick, fragrant peel is the perfect way to add citrus zest to dishes.

Yamashiroya was established by its founding mother, Sada Sanada, in 1904, but was completely destroyed in World War II. Driven by the desire to continue the family business, Yamashiroya was reestablished in 1946 and celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2004.

Yamashiroya's produce is grown by hand and relies on the wisdom and experience of their farmers who cultivate the rich soil, resulting in high-quality crops. After being run by four generations of women, the company is now in its fifth generation and is run by the family’s young son.




Yuzu Miso Powder (みそパウダー (柚子))
Prefecture: Hayakawa Shoyu Miso
Producer: Miyazaki
Ingredients: Barley (Kyushu), soybeans (Kyushu), salt, yuzu peel (domestic)
Suggested uses: Shake well before using. Sprinkle on steaks, grilled fish, cheese, salads, onigiri (rice balls), pasta, bbq skewers, tempura, etc.
Storage: Close the bottle tightly and store in a cool place after opening. Avoid humidity. Use as soon as possible.

Hayakawa Shoyu Miso re-researched miso from the ground up and built a manufacturing method from scratch in order to produce this heavenly combination of strong citrus yuzu and umami-rich miso. It required 5 years of research and development to create a flavorful yuzu miso powder using only four simple ingredients, barley, soybeans, salt and yuzu peels, all without added chemicals or preservatives. 

HayakawaShoyu Miso was founded in the 18th year of Meiji, and this year marks its 135th anniversary. For over one hundred years, the company has been contributing to food culture with the belief that “culture is deliciousness, health, and people”.




Nanbu Yuba (Dried Tofu Skin) and Yuzu Soup (南部ゆばとゆずの無添加スープ)
Producer: Minami Shokuhin
Prefecture: Iwate
Ingredients: Yuba (tofu skin) (soybeans (Iwate)), yuzu (domestic), mitsuba (Japanese parsley);Soup: soy sauce, salt, fermented seasoning, sugar, bonito extract, yeast extract, fish sauce, konbu extract (contains wheat, mackerel, soybeans)
Suggested uses: Place the yuba in a bowl, pour in 180ml of hot water, then add the soup. The soup will be ready after a few minutes. Add chopped negi (spring onion) if desired.
Storage: Room temperature.

Yuba (tofu skins) is a simple yet wholesome food that is made by warming soybean milk and skimming off the top film, or tofu skin, as it forms. While it tastes somewhat similar to tofu, it has a distinct creamy texture from its delicate, thin layers and a slightly sweet, almost buttery taste. 

This "Nanbu Yuba" is made from 100% soybeans grown in the fertile soil of Iwate Prefecture in an area known as Nanbu, which is famous for its ironwear . The soybeans are first sorted by color, taste, size, etc. and only the ones most suitable for making yuba are selected. The soybeans are soaked overnight in natural soft water sourced from local granite bedrock until soft then ground into a paste using a stone mill. The paste is then boiled in a kiln before being squeezed in a filter to separate the soybean milk from the pulp (known as okara). The soybean milk is then heated until a thin film (yuba) forms. The yuba is carefully removed using a bamboo skewer then naturally dried to maintain its smooth texture when rehydrated. The clear, citrus yuzu soup has a refreshing flavor and aroma that perfectly complements the nutty, buttery taste of the yuba, creating a wonderfully comforting dish.

Found in the northernmost part of Iwate Prefecture, Minami Shokuhin is located in Hironocho, a half-fishing, half-farming town with a population of about 16,000, that was devastated by the Great East Japan Earthquake. Surrounded by mountains, sea, and farms, the quiet town continues to recover and reconstruct with its abundant local ingredients and beautiful night stars.


Premium Yuzu Salad Dressing (プレミアムドレッシング ゆず)
Producer: Choko Shoyu
Prefecture: Nagasaki
Ingredients: Soy sauce (contains wheat and soybeans) (domestic), rapeseed oil, sugar, brewed vinegar, onion, yuzu juice, sesame, salt, starch, yeast extract, seafood extract
Suggested uses: Use as a dressing for salads (such as a caprese salad), on boiled vegetables, cold tofu or carpaccio.
Storage: Refrigerate after opening.

This salad dressing is a blend of two iconic Japanese flavors: citrus yuzu and umami-rich soy sauce. Made without chemical seasonings, fragrant yuzu juice from Kochi Prefecture is combined with whole soybean soy sauce, brewed vinegar, domestically produced onions and nutty sesame seeds to create a refreshing citrus dressing.

Choko Shoyu was established in 1941 by 29 local soy sauce producers as the first soy sauce cooperative in the industry. The group has carefully preserved traditional brewing techniques with a commitment to the United Nations’ SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). They are also a member of the Good Food Making Association - an organization that is re-examining food in pursuit of health and deliciousness in daily life. All products must adhere to 4 principles of good food (safety, taste, price and transparency) and good food production (quality raw materials, clean factories, technology and a conscientious management that values the "craftsman's heart" and the global environment over profit). They believe that those who produce and sell food have a responsibility to preserve traditional, seasonal flavors while protecting the environment.



Honey Yuzu Peels (ハニーゆずピール)
Producer: Suki Tokusan
Prefecture: Miyazaki
Ingredients: Yuzu peels (Miyazaki), sugar, honey, Vitamin C, citric acid
Suggested uses: Enjoy as is or pair with a Japanese tea available at our Market: Michi no Eki. Can also be finely chopped and sprinkled on yogurt or ice cream, or mixed into muffin batter or scone dough.

Suki Tokusan artfully stews yuzu peels in natural granulated sugar to add the right amount of sweetness to the tart, acidic notes of the yuzu peel. Honey is also added to balance the sourness to achieve a sweet and sour taste known as amazuppai.

Suki Tokusan was founded as a way to bolster the declining population of Suki, a small village in Miyazaki Prefecture on Kyushu island. In order to revive the area and bring attention to its agricultural treasures, Suki Tokusan began specializing in locally grown produce, such as yuzu, and using them to create their own regional specialities.



Mom's Mikan Orange & Yuzu Smoothie (おふくろスムージー みかんとゆず)
Producer: Sowa Kajuen (Sowa Orchard)
Prefecture: Wakayama
Ingredients: Unshu mandarin orange (Wakayama), sugar, yuzu juice, glucose, agar, konjac powder, vitamin C
Suggested uses: Enjoy at room temperature, chilled or place in a cup and freeze to enjoy as a frozen treat.
Storage: Refrigerate after opening and use as soon as possible.

Another special Japanese citrus fruit is mikan (also known as unshu mikan or Japanese mandarin orange). Mikan are characterized by their low acidity and sweet yet subtly tangy taste. With a 450 year history, the Arita region of Wakayama Prefecture is a major producer of local mikan. These Arita mikan are grown on the Sowa Orchard which was started by seven mikan farmers in 1979. 

While most common mikan juices are made by squeezing the tangerine with the peel, Sowa Kajuen first removes the peel to capture the natural sweetness of the juice and pulp, without any bitterness. The thin peel is then pureed and added back to create a fibrous, smoothie-like texture. It’s then combined with a splash of domestic yuzu juice and a hint of sugar and thickened with agar and konjac to create an delicious citrus smoothie, just like mom would make! 

Sowa Kajuen engages in everything from producing, processing and selling mikan while supporting the local community. They received the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries Award in 2014 in recognition of their longstanding efforts.

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