Kuzukiri: How to Use Japanese Kudzu Jelly Noodles

Have you ever heard of the traditional Japanese noodle-like food “Kuzukiri (葛切り)”? which, in Japan, is particularly familiar to those living in the Kansai region around Osaka.

In fact, if you have a plan to go on a sightseeing trip to Kyoto, there you may find Japanese confectionery shops or teahouses offering Kuzukiri as a sweet or dessert.

Kuzukiri (葛切り)

Kuzukiri Noodles

As its name indicates, the main ingredient of Kuzu-Kiri is kudzu.

Kuzukiri is a simple, almost tasteless jelly noodle made from kudzu-ko (kudzu powder) that has been dissolved in water, heated, cooled down, and cut into thin strips.

The resultant kudzu jelly noodles are clear milky white in color and have a smooth, somewhat chewy, slippery texture.

However, in recent years, Kuzukiri is often made with potato starch, instead of kudzu-ko, mainly because the kudzu powder is in low supply.

By the way, in Japan, as seen in Kuzuyu, the kudzu powder, kudzu-ko has long been utilized as a folk remedy for colds and stomach disorders.

Uses

Many Japanese people would associate Kuzukiri with a dessert eaten in the summer when the kudzu jelly noodle is sold as a confection in supermarkets and convenience stores around the country.

But Kuzukiri can be used in various ways and is actually also used in everyday dishes. So last, for people who are curious about the usage of Kuzukiri, let me introduce specific uses of the kudzu jelly noodle.

In Dessert

Kuzukiri Noodles with Kuromitsu

As I mentioned above, Kuzukiri is most commonly eaten as a dessert. 

Even though the kudzu jelly noodle is associated with a sweet enjoyed only during the hot summer months, it actually can be bought at supermarkets throughout the year.

We usually enjoy Kuzukiri noodles with Kuromitsu brown syrup, over which some Japanese like dusting “Kinako (きな粉)” roasted soybean flour or Matcha green tea powder. 

In Nabemono Hot Pot

Nabemono with Kuzukiri Noodles

In the winter, Kuzukiri noodles are added to Nabemono hot pots. Especially, the dried varieties absorb the flavor of broth so well that they are recommended for Nabemono.

In Salad

Pasta Salad using Kuzukiri NoodlesImage: cookpad.com

Kuzukiri noodles can be substituted for spaghetti noodles. For example, some Japanese home cooks like to make a pasta salad with Kuzukiri. The kudzu jelly noodle pairs well with fresh vegetables and they are both healthy.

(Reference Pages: Wikipedia 葛切り )


Tomo

Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

2 Responses

  1. Jennifer says:

    How much powder and how much water for recipe???

    • Tomo says:

      Thank you for the comment!

      We Japanese usually obtain Kuzukiri noodles at grocery stores, but if you want to make the kudzu jelly noodles for yourself, you need some tips.

      I think this recipe on cookpad.com is helpful. On the page, there are several photos too concerning the making instructions.

      The ingredients you need to prepare for this recipe are water and kudzu powder (at a ratio of 3 : 1), and the making instructions for the Kuzukiri noodles are as follows.

      1. Put water and kudzu powder at a ratio of 3 : 1 in a bowl and dissolve the powder
      2. Strain the liquid through something like a tea strainer
      3. (Prepare a plate in which you indirectly heat the above liquid. Its depth becomes Kuzukiri noodles’ thickness)
      4. Pour the liquid into the plate
      5. Bring a pot of water to the boil, then set the plate afloat and indirectly heat it
      6. When the surface of the liquid gets firm and dry, pour hot water gently from the rim of the plate until the kudzu jelly is entirely soaked
      7. After you keep the jelly in the water for a while, sink the plate in the pot. When the kudzu jelly becomes transparent, take the plate out from the pot
      8. Peel off the jelly from the plate, and let it cool down in iced water
      9. Cut the kudzu jelly into thin strips like noodles
      10. Enjoy the Kuzukiri noodles with brown sugar syrup!

      I hope this will help.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: