Kiritampo is a local delicacy here in Akita. And it's pretty simply to make.


  • A wooden pestle (擂粉木)
  • 3 or 4 wooden sticks (木の棒)
  • Rice (komachi is best)
  • Bowl of cold water with salt added
  • Dengaku miso (田楽みそ) or miso, mirin and sugar


  1. Cook 3 cups of rice with 3 cups of water in a rice cooker
  2. After cooking let sit for 10 minutes (allowing the rice cooker to keep it warm)
  3. Now remove the bowl from the cooker and place on a solid surface
  4. Using the wooden pestle mash the rice until every rice grain is half mashed, this should take about 10 minutes or so. Wet the pestle in the water before starting to help stop the rice from sticking to the pestle.
  5. Now wet both hands in the water, take a handful of rice and make into a ball.
  6. Take one of wooden sticks and start working the rice around the stick. You will need to dip your hands into the water regularly.
  7. Finally, roll the kiritampo on a hard surface to make it smooth.
  8. It is now ready to be cooked.
  9. To cook the kiritampo place on a BBQ, beside a fire, or under a grill. It should be allowed to brown slightly, then turn it.

You have 2 options from here:

  1. Remove the kiritampo from the sticks, cut, and add to a kiritampo nabe.
  2. Put on miso paste and enjoy straight from the stick.
  • A sweet miso paste is good. For example dengaku miso (田楽みそ). Or you can make a pate from mixing about 50g of miso with 15-30ml of mirin and some sugar (10g or so).


  • After mashing the rice, simply form small balls and place those into a nabe. There is no need to grill them.


  • If you soak the wooden sticks the night before, they will burn less when cooking the kiritampo.

See also