Amanatto: Sweet Boiled Bean Wagashi Confection
One of the best-known Japanese delicacies, “natto (納豆)” is a fermented soybean with a slimy consistency and unpleasant smell to it.
Because of that, many people don’t like or can’t eat it, even if they were born and raised in Japan.
You may not like natto either, so for those, here I will introduce another type of natto called “Amanatto (甘納豆)”.
Do you know the food?
If you hear the name, Amanatto, for the first time, you might wonder if it is a delicacy relating to natto fermented soybeans.
But don’t worry, Amanatto is a food completely different from natto. Actually, it is a type of wagashi or traditional Japanese confection, with over 150 years of history.
Specifically, Amanatto is made of beans that have been simmered in sugar syrup, coated with sugar powder, and dried.
A variety of beans can be used to make Amanatto, which include Azuki red bean, broad bean, kidney bean, peanut, soybean, and Kuromame.
Other than these beans, food materials such as chestnut, lotus seed, and round sweet potato slices can also be the main ingredient of Amanatto.
Because of that, the Japanese treat comes in a variety of colors ranging from glossy black to beautiful green and red.
Where to Buy
Amanatto is a sweet that’s been widely enjoyed in Japan for over a century, so today, it can be bought at most supermarkets and convenience stores around the country.
How to Enjoy
Japanese people usually eat Amanatto as it is, typically with green tea, but the bean confection can also be used in other ways like the below.
With Bread (Cake)
Amanatto is sweet, besides has nearly the same size as raisins. Hence, some people like to make bread or cake using the wagashi in place of raisins.
With Plain Yogurt
Amanatto is not only sweet but also healthful, so some people like to eat plain yogurt with the beans mixed in, without using sugar.
(Reference Page: Wikipedia 甘納豆 )