Like many cultures, Japan first used chickens as living alarm clocks. The first record of this dates back to the Kojiki, the country’s first official history book, written in 712. The chicken was considered a sacred bird back then because it told people when morning had come, and apparently no one considered consuming the source
We know spring is here when fresh bamboo shoots start popping up from the ground. In keeping with the traditional Japanese concept of enjoying food during its peak season, why not try this tasty and easy version of bamboo rice to celebrate spring, the season of renewal. I know I am ready for spring….aren’t you?!
Walk out of almost any train station in Japan in the evening, look for a restaurant with an akachochin (red lantern) outside, and inside you’ll find groups of salaried workers talking, drinking, and consuming countless skewers of yakitori, this country’s version of shish kebab. There is something very seductive about the smell of meat grilling
When I was a college student in Tokyo, I would often pass mobile food stalls, called yatai, late on blustery winter nights and be completely overwhelmed by the powerful aroma of oden, or Japanese hodgepodge stew. Oden’s pungent smell and taste have made it a perennial favorite with drinkers, no matter the season. It is
IN JAPANESE CULTURE, soba (buckwheat) noodles have always been seen as a “happiness” food, served on special occasions. It is traditional, too, when moving into a new house to greet your neighbors with hikoshi soba (moving soba). This involves a play on words, as soba also means “close” or “near” – like neighbors. Another soba
A little unknown fact about me is that I love sumo! It is one of the few sports I’ll watch. When I lived in Japan, you couldn’t tear me away from the television whenever sumo was on. I even went to a live Sumo tournament in Tokyo with my then father-in-law and it was sublime!