Konnyaku Queen Sawako Hashizume


Sawako, the Konnyaku Queen | Shirataki Noodles Recipe Creator & Influencer

The "Konnyaku Queen," Sawako Hashizume, 32, grew up in a household that embraced the macrobiotic lifestyle. In 2013, Sawako’s recipe using frozen, then thawed konnyaku* won the Grand Prize in a contest sponsored by the Konnyaku Museum on Gunma Prefecture in Japan. Her healthy recipe was the first in the history of the cooking contest to feature macrobiotic ingredients and methods.

Since earning this Grand Prize, Sawako has been featured in many health/wellness and cooking magazines throughout Japan. Featuring many of her unique, healthy recipes, her first cookbook Frozen Konnyaku Diet will be published in the summer of 2014. Sawako loves cooking with Skinny Noodles and has discovered many ways to incorporate shirataki into both traditional and non-traditional recipes.

Growing up, Sawako and her family ate a diet that consisted mainly of pure, whole, unprocessed foods including brown rice and vegetables to keep the body in balance and good health. Their lifestyle was inspired by Kenzo Niki, pioneer of the macrobiotic diet and author of Way to Good Health. Sawako’s maternal grandfather was a certified acupuncturist. Following in his footsteps, Sawako is also a licensed acupuncturist today.

From an early age, Sawako helped her mother and grandfather in the kitchen and enjoyed cooking along side them. She was an inquisitive child, asking why some foods were healthier than others and why certain foods were not good for the body. In 2004, Sawako began entering cooking contests in Japan geared mainly toward professional chefs. Although she lacked a formal culinary education, she earned an Award of Excellence for her original recipe in a contest sponsored by a large rice company in 2008. Sawako is married to Ryo Hashizume and resides in Tokyo, Japan. To visit Sawako's website, click here.

Browse recipes created by Sawako, the Konnyaku Queen!

*Konnyaku, also called konjac, is a fibrous root native to Asia used to make many foods including shirataki noodles