Uiro: Steamed Rice Cake Specialty of Nagoya
Last November, I went to Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, to see a live concert by Perfume held at Nagoya Dome.
The next day, I did sightseeing in the city and bought a local confection called Uiro (ういろう) because my parents liked it and asked me to take it back home.
Uiro is a traditional Japanese confection (Wagashi) made from rice flour kneaded with water and sugar, molded, and steamed in a basket called Seiro (蒸籠).
The sweet looks like Yokan (羊羹) but has a chewier texture than the latter jelly dessert.
Not only in Nagoya, but various regions in Japan, including Odawara, Ise, Kyoto, Kobe, Tokushima, and Yamaguchi, have variations of Uiro.
Many use rice flour (glutinous/non-glutinous), but bracken starch/wheat flour can also be the main ingredient.
Besides, in addition to white sugar, Uiro may contain other varieties of sugar, such as brown sugar.
Also, this Wagashi uses flavoring ingredients, such as Anko sweet red bean paste or Matcha green tea powder.
One theory holds that the origin of Uiro dates back to the middle of the 14th century.
After that, during the Edo period (1603 to 1868), its production method spread to various regions of Japan.
Aoyagi Sohonke (青柳総本家), founded in 1879 in Nagoya, is Japan’s largest Uiro maker.
And their products have a registered trademark, Aoyagi Uiro (青柳ういろう).
(Reference Page: Wikipedia ういろう )