Located an hour’s drive east of central Hiroshima city and facing calm, translucent waters, the town of Akitsu is surrounded by the islands of the Seto Inland Sea.
Akitsu is known as a production area for oysters and potatoes.
As the salt concentration in this part of the sea is high, the oysters produced here, while lean and rich in flavor, are somewhat on the small side. They have plenty of fans though!
At the same time, Akitsu potatoes, which are grown in the brick-colored red clay soil, are abundant in minerals. With a soft and flaky flavor, they’re also well known throughout the whole of Japan.
As we heard that “Kaki marugoto senbei” (Whole oyster crackers), which are made with a whole oysters and Akitsu potatoes, are delicious, we hurried over to do research for this article!
We visited Maruichi Shoten, a well-established shop specializing in oysters that has been in business in Akitsu for 118 years.
At the plant where gentle sea breezes bring the scent of the seaside and where you can admire calm sea views, the handmade crackers are fried on a daily basis.
Within the plant you’re surrounded by the delicious scent of the crackers frying; it felt so comfortable I just didn’t want to leave!
The Akitsu potatoes are pealed carefully one by one before being mashed and made into cracker dough.
A whole oyster is placed on top and the mixture is heat pressed to create a finished cracker.
As the oyster’s juicy essence permeates the dough, the moment you put it in your mouth it is filled with the oyster flavor.
It’s a gem of a product that will make you reach out for another and then another; you can’t stop with just one bite! They go well with beer and sake, too.
A certified “Hiroshima brand” product, oyster crackers are gaining popularity nationwide as an orderable product.
We recommend oyster crackers as souvenirs and gifts from Hiroshima. They are sold at Hiroshima airport and train station, at department stores and through the online shop.
Check them out!
Maruichi Shoten Ltd.
Address: 5682 Kidani, Akitsu-cho, Higashihiroshima city, Hiroshima prefecture
HP: http://www.setonosachi.com/ (Japanese)
Setouchi Finder Photo-writers: Makoto Esaki & Yoko Suganami (Rainbow Sake Co., Ltd.)
Yoko Suganami Rainbow Sake, Inc. After an extended stay in Hawaii, in 2011, I returned to my hometown of Kure, Hiroshima. Having worked at advertising companies in both Japan and Hawaii, I founded Rainbow Sake - a PR company with the goal of spreading Sake abroad. I hope that sake will ""bring the people of the world together"" and that I can be a part of that. I often travel abroad, and mostly to Hawaii and Singapore. Every time I come back home, I rediscover the beauty of my hometown and the happiness the easygoing, calm, fresh and simple sea and mountains of Setouchi bring.
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