Once Ninjas began a mission, they have to run about mountains, and lurk in roof space or under floor for a long time; therefore, they trained to bear up under fasting. But like the old saying goes “an army marches on its stomach,” they had to eat something for an important task to bring their abilities into full play.
The most popular food that Ninjas carried as provision was “sun-dried rice,” which could be stored for a long-period of time. They ate it just like that or soaked it in water to soften it. Another rice-made food they carried was “rice-bound-with-mirin (sweet sake)”. They mixed it with hot water to make nigorizake (cloudy sake), which warmed their bodies during cold winter. They also carried dried-araceae-stem-balls on a cord which they wore across their shoulders.
The provisions were eaten not only by Ninjas, but they were common among samurai and travelers in that time. There were actually Ninja original provisions such as “suikatsugan” and “kikatsugan.”
“Suikatsugan” was a food prevented thirst. It was made from beaten plum, crystal sugar, and claviceps purpurea.
“Kikatsugan” was a food to keep off hunger. It is made of carrot, flour, buckwheat, yam, glycyrrhiza, job’s tears, and mochi rice. These seven ingredients grinded and soaked into sake for three years, and then rolled into small balls. It was said “three katsugan balls a day put him away from physical and mental tiredness.”
It is hard to make these Ninja secret foods today, but you can find modern version of Ninja food.
This is a hard gummi “Ninja meshi (food)” released by UHA mikakuto. It eases people’s hunger at offices and schools in Japan (^_^)
This is JAPAN Style!
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