(Chili Lotus Root)
One of Kumamoto’s local delicacies, this dish is a boiled lotus root stuffed with a chili miso paste (made from a mix of miso, chili powder and honey) and deep fried.* The origin of the dish is said to date back to when the Zen monk, Gentaku, presented the rich in nutrient snack to Lord Hosokawa Tadatoshi, who is known to have suffered from a weak constitution. A slice of lotus root (cut vertically and viewed head on) looks like the crest of the house of Hosokawa (Kuyoumon). The chili lotus root has a unique flavour and is something of a secret recipe. It has a poignant, spicy smell, whilst the texture of the lotus root has a delicious quality that is quite indescribable.
(* The paste is stuffed into the wholes of the lotus root)
(Taken from the "Kumamoto Prefecture tourism site, Nagomi Journey")