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Toge no kamameshi

Toge no kamameshi

Probably the most famous ekiben - station bento box in Japan.

Toge no kamameshi, sold since 1958 is a main product of Oginoya which was established in 1885 in front of Yokokawa station in current Annaka city of Gunma prefecture. Toge means pass/ridge and Kamameshi is a Japanese type of pilaf.

Ingredients are chestnut, hard boiled quail egg, chicken, burdock, shiitake mushroom, green peas, bamboo shoots, apricot and rice.

Toge no kamameshi was named after from Usui pass, which is lying between Yokokawa and Karuizawa station in Nagano prefecture. Usui pass was the steepest railway gradient section in Japan, 66.7‰, which means the altitude goes up 66.7 meters per 1000 meters. Therefore, additional electric locomotive was attached between Yokokawa and Karuizawa, which means trains connecting this section must stop longer period than other section.

The Remarkable thing of Toge no kamameshi is that the bowl is not a plastic one but a pottery one which is Mashiko ware, traditional pottery made in and surrounding of town of Mashiko, Tochigi prefecture.

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