“Yomogi”, also called “Mochigusa” (mochi grass) has been picked, used and grown for ages in most of this country, first as a medicinal herb and second for food.
Its latin name is “Artemisia princeps”. It mainly grows in mountains on sun-exposed slopes. Not to be confused with “niga-yomogi”, the Japanese name for thujone, e.g. absinthe!
Preparation of wagashi/Japanese cakes made with rice flour, yomogi and anko/sweetmeats!
It blooms in June~July. Farmers have long used its roots as medicine, after pressing water out and drying them.
The leaves are considered to help against lack of appetite, thin blood, stomach colds, diarrhea, nose bleed, constipation and gout. They are aslo extensively used in baths.
As for medicine make Yomogi sake: Leave 300g. of leaves in 1.8 l. of sake for half a year. Drink a 20ml, 3 times a day.
Leaves can be applied on insect-bitten skin.
“Kintsuba/Sabre guard” wagashi made with rice flour, yomogi and sweetmeats (Miwa Supermarket, Shizuoka City)
There are many ways to enjoy them as food as well as medicine:
In Shizuoka, you will also find many farmers selling a sweet in the shape of a hot cake with sweetmeats (anko) inside.
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8 thoughts on “Japanese Vegetarian & Vegan Cuisine Ingredient: Yomogi!”
Hi: This is Peter from Canada. I am trying to find a supplier of yomogi leaf dried and cut…5 kg. Thanks for connecting me with someone from Shizuoka prefecture…….
Will check, although such leaves are rarely sold as most people pick them in the nature. People do not cultivate them because the pollen of their flowers is highly allergic!
I have never heard about this intriguing plant in my life. Wagashi look very unusual. I would love to taste some good ones. I suppose this is one of these desserts which are easily spoilt and there can be huge differences in quality. I will not even try doing wagashi at home.
You are right there. Wagashi have to be fresh although they will keep longer than cakes that include eggs and dairy products!
Wow, that looks delish! But what exactly is “Sasa Dango”?
Sasa is the name of the bamboo-like leaf.
Dango means ball!
Whoa! I have always wondered about the green color! I thought there must be something else other than Artemisia vulgaris! Does it taste bitter like Artemisia vulgaris?
No, it doesnot taste bitter at all!
I’ve eaten a lot as tempura and they are very soft in taste!