Making rice the proper way is an art in Japan, one that often takes many years to perfect. The importance of this is reflected by the overwhelming number of Japanese meals that end with a bowl of pearlescent, impeccably cooked short-grain white rice, pickles, and miso soup. Rice’s versatility doesn’t stop there, of course. OneRead On >
Miso: More than just a Seasoning
Miso (fermented soybean paste) is not only considered a condiment, spice, and seasoning in Japan but a way of life as well. I can think of no equivalent food in Western cuisine that has had such a powerful impact on culinary culture, not to mention societal relations. Miso is believed to have been created inRead On >
Oden: Japanese Hodgepodge Stew
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 isRead On >
Soba Celebrations for a Happy New Year!
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 sobaRead On >