Fugashi: Classic Japanese Dried Wheat Gluten Snack
“Fu (麩)” is a traditional Japanese food made of wheat gluten. It is similar to a piece of bread in texture and we Japanese commonly use the bread-like food in miso soup.
The dried wheat gluten cake, Fu has a long history and is said to have been transmitted from China about 700 years ago.
In Japan, since around the Edo period (Edo: 1603 to 1868), the food has continued to be used as an ingredient for snack foods, and what I introduce here “Fu-Gashi (麩菓子)” is one of the quintessential.
Fugashi is a classic “Dagashi (駄菓子)” snack that has been around since 1949 and now a number of confectionery companies are producing it.
The Dagashi treat is cheap, usually sold for several dozen yen at supermarkets, so it is loved particularly by children.
As its name indicates, the main ingredient of Fu-Gashi is Fu and the entire surface of the snack is coated with brown sugar syrup and dried.
Fugashi mostly comes in a stick shape where the brown sugar coating has a savory sweetness, while the inner Fu part is light and crisp like a baguette.
How to Enjoy
Of course, Fugashi can be eaten as it is, but there is a recommended way to enjoy it that became a popular topic on the internet before.
Actually, the method is just to fry the snack with some butter in a pan. When it is heated, the outer brown sugar coating melts and the snack becomes like french toast.
After frying each side, transfer the cooked Fugashi to a plate and enjoy. As with french toast, it goes well with vanilla ice cream.
Recipe using Mochi-Fu
Lastly for those of you who want to somehow make it at home, let me introduce an easy Fugashi recipe using a common type of Fu called “Mochi-Fu (もちふ)” from Japanese cookpad.com.
|Brown sugar (powder)||3 tablespoons|
- Put the water and brown sugar in a pan and heat it on a low flame. Don’t stir the liquid, or it will be clumpy
- When the mixture becomes viscous, stop heating the pan
- Then, add the Mochi-Fu and coat with the syrup
- Transfer the cooked Mochi-Fu to a plate and let the surface dry naturally for a while
- If the dried surface is still sticky, coat it with additional brown sugar
- Enjoy Fugashi!
(Reference Page: Wikipedia 麩菓子 )