Ubatama

Ubatama is a traditional sweet confection originally from the Kamikita/Sampachi region of Aomori prefecture. Ubatama features nagaimo, or Japanese yam, making it a highly nutritious snack. It is believed to be perfect for “uba” or wet nurses, giving it the name Ubatama.
*This recipe is based on recipes from “Food Culture Tradition Guidebook.”

Ingredients [makes 15 serving(s)]

  • 200g of Nagaimo (Japanese yam)
  • 150g of jonanko (Fine mochiko/sweet rice flour used for Japanese confection)
  • 150g of sugar
  • 250g of anko (sweet red bean paste)

Directions

  1. Gently stir the jonanko and sugar together.
    Adjust the amount of sugar to your preference.
  2. Grate the yam (freeze the yam for easier grating), and break it down further by grinding in a bowl.
    Freeze the yam to make it sweeter and easier to handle during the grinding process.
  3. Mix the ingredients from step 1. and 2. Knead until soft. Divide the dough to make small balls and wrap some anko in the center of each ball.
    Wipe down any excess water from the sasa leaves. Place the mochi on the top side of the leaves and wrap them up. Sasa leaves can be omitted if sasa leaves are not available.
    Add the wet ingredient (ground yam) to the dry ingredients to adjust the firmness of the dough.
    You can add a small amount of matcha, powdered coffee, or jam to make it colorful.
  4. Using your thumb, index finger, and middle finger, mold each ball with three dimples.
    Using your thumb, index finger, and middle finger, mold each ball with three dimples.

Links

Aomori Local Cuisine
Nagaimo (Japanese Yam)
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