Food Forum
Vol. 27 No. 3  October 2013





Japanese yamJapanese yam
Makes 16 slices

115 kcal  Protein 1.8 g  Fat 0.2 g (per piece)

  • 1/3 C (70 g) dried blueberries
  • 5/6 C (200 ml) water
  • 1 t Kikkoman Soy Sauce
  • 1 1/2 C (200 g) Japanese non-glutinous rice flour (jyoshinko)
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 1/2 C (200 g) kurozato, powdered dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 C (100 g) grated Japanese yam*
  • 1 T granulated sugar
  • 2 egg whites


Square cake pan 18 cm x 18 cm (7 in. x 7 in.) or round pan 20 cm (8 in.) diameter.

  1. Soak dried blueberries in mixture of water and soy sauce for 30 minutes. Drain and reserve separately the soaking water and blueberries.
  2. Sift Japanese rice flour and baking powder together. Set aside.
  3. In a food processor, blend grated Japanese yam (see photo) and dark brown sugar. Add the reserved soaking water and mix. Pour into a bowl.
  4. To this bowl, add in the mixture of rice flour and baking powder, stir and set aside.
  5. In a different bowl, add sugar to egg whites and whisk until stiff. Fold whipped egg and blueberries into the yam mixture and stir well.
  6. Place a sheet of baking paper on the bottom of cake pan and pour in the cake batter; steam in a steamer over high heat for 30 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Let cool, remove the karukan cake from the pan, peel off baking paper and cut into 16 pieces.

* If unavailable, Chinese yam may be substituted. If using Chinese yam, adjust amount of water as this variety has a higher moisture content.

Note: For accurate measurements, please weigh all ingredients.

Recipe by Kikkoman Corporation

1 C (U.S. cup) = approx. 240 ml; 1 T = 15 ml; 1 t = 5 ml

This recipe was inspired by “The Japanese Table” feature article “Food Byways: The Sugar Road” included in this issue.