With pure water, clean air, and fresh milk, Tokachi has all the right ingredients for making delicious natural cheese. Using 220,000 tons of milk, the annual cheese production of this area is about 26,000 tons and accounts for 2/3 of all natural cheese produced in Japan. Producers are regularly refining their craft to mature the original cheeses in the right climate with repeated trials and errors. The taste is both subtle and rich. Tokachi’s natural cheeses include 6 kinds: white mold, blue-veined, fresh, washed, goat milk, and heated and unheated types. Compare them all to find your favorite!
Tokachi, the sub-prefecture that includes the city of Obihiro, started the “Food Valley Tokachi” campaign to improve the food value and promote the core growth of the local economy. It has gained a lot of traction with locals and provided a strong push to attract more attention to Tokachi food products.
“Tokachi Mush” mushrooms is just one example of Tokachi food. Located near the river bank of the Satsunai River in Southern Obihiro in the middle of the Tokachi Plains, these mushrooms are carefully grown and harvested without any agrochemicals in a completely sealed building.
“Tokachi Ajillo,” a popular local dish, uses Tokachi Mush in its recipe because of the mushroom’s exquisite taste and firm texture. Other locally produced vegetables and meats are simmered in oil and added to enhance the flavor. Tokachi Ajillo is highly recommended for visitors to this area.
The Tokachi region, famous for its confectionery, is also known as the “Kingdom of Sweets”. The quality ingredients, like flour, dairy products, red beans, and natural sugar from beets, that go into each recipe are locally-grown and consumed. These ingredients, which are grown in a wide and natural area, also make for safe and secure sources for sweet products. There are many shops in Tokachi that offer a variety of original tasty sweets with reasonable prices.
In addition, the “Kingdom of Tokachi Dairy Products” is also very popular. Many sweets shops have their own original soft serve ice cream. It is fun to compare the flavors.
It is also recommended to buy the “Obihiro Sweets Ticket” for 500 Japanese Yen. Visitors to Obihiro can use this bargain ticket to try 4 different sweets of their choosing, each from different shops. It is a great deal!
Buta Don (Pork Rice Bowl)
Benzo Yoda, a pioneer of Hokkaido, started pig farming when he founded Obihiro city. In those days, cattle were used for milk, the horses for power, and pigs for food. Buta Don is a popular dish of steamed rice, served with grilled pork with sweetened soy sauce on top. First served around 1925, it is now not only popular for the locals, but also for the tourists. The cooking method is simple, yet many restaurants offer their own special recipes. Genuine Buta Don is highly recommended in Obihiro.