Takanotsume translates to "The Claw of the Hawk" and is a very rare pepper in Japan. In fact, Tsujita-san, the president and craftsman of Yamatsu Tsujita Co. Ltd. says, "99 percent of red chili peppers sold in Japan are produced overseas and many of these are species of red chili peppers that cannot be called Takanotsume although they are circulated as such." These peppers have become his mission to preserve and as he puts it, "Takanotsume is my heart and soul." Takanotsume peppers are prized for their distinctively rich aroma, flavor and unrivaled spiciness. Enjoy in any way you currently use dried peppers.
Yamatsu Tsujita Co. Ltd. is located just outside Osaka, Japan. Fourth generation owner Tsujita-san is passionate about his spices and has gone so far as to single-handedly save the cultivation of Japanese Takanotsume (Hawk's Claw) chili. This chili is highlighted in his shichimi togarashi.