Misomatsukaze (味噌松風)

Misomatsukaze is a kind of baked confectionery.

Flour, sugar, and starch syrup are mixed together, with white bean paste added to create a dough, which is poured into a pan and shaped, sprinkled with poppy seeds, and scorched at the top. There is a variety of Misomatsukaze, from those that are hard and resembling rice crackers, to those that are soft resembling castella sponge cakes. Sometimes white bean paste is used, and at other times haccho miso (bean paste) is used.

One theory holds that it originated as food used at the time of an uprising of Ikko sect followers, although this is not certain. While the top is decorated with poppy seeds and browned, the reverse side of the cake is white and looks lonely; thus it was named, as a play on words, after the saying: "Wind in the pines (matsukaze) on the beach suggests loneliness." Many of the Misomatsukaze in Kyoto have characteristic traits such as Daitokuji natto (natto made in Daitokuji Temple) being added.

It is one of the Kyoto Confectioneries, and is also sold as souvenir sweets in Gifu City, Gifu Prefecture, and Kikuchi City, Kumamoto Prefecture, and Hagi City, Yamaguchi Prefecture, among other places.

[Original Japanese]