Kishu binchotan is revered as possibly the best charcoal to cook with. It is made from Ubame oak, sourced sustainably in Wakayama Prefecture. Trees are coppiced, or branches are pruned, and either used as a thick round whole (komaru), thin round whole (kirimaru), split into half-moons and quarters (hanmaru), or thin branches (hosomaru). The small pieces that are left are called aranami - perfect for grilling in small shichirin.
The wood is slow fired over 10 days in kilns under oxygen-deprived conditions, which turn the wood into up to 98% carbon. The charcoal is cooled using sand and ash, giving it a distinctive white colour. What you are left with is an extremely hard, smokeless and pure charcoal, which burns at a constant temperature for up to five hours, or can be re-used up to four times. Aranami pieces have a shorter lifespan, but offer much quicker combustion and are easy to use in small shichirin. It has become a firm favourite with chefs across the world.
Sold according to weight - the price indicated is per 1kg box.
The global demand for Kishu binchotan is very high, therefore we offer 1kg boxes for use with our range of Japanese shichirin - hand-cut diatomaceous earth Japanese grills which offer the perfect insulating container for a delicious table-top cooked dinner.
Binchotan can also be used as a water purifier. Boil binchotan to be used for water purification for 10 minutes before use.
To split the wood, use an axe, and be careful, since it breaks clean, but can also shatter. For cooking, use an open flame to ignite the binchotan, since it takes longer to combust than regular charcoal.