10 Classic Japanese Dishes for Foreigners Must Try
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Japanese food has been attracting the world’s attention for the past several years. From traditional dishes to international fusion dishes that are inspired by a variety of dishes around the world and developed on their own. In this post, I’m going to share 10 classic Japanese dishes that are a must for foreigners to try.
Sushi is well known as California rolls or salmon nigiri abroad. When in Japan, why don’t you try the sorts of sushi that are only available here such as, tuna, sea urchin, salmon roe, squid and conger.
Indeed, “Ramen” as I introduced in the previous post is popular here. Chinese noodle soup has evolved into something completely unique in Japan and now, it is one of the classics of the Japanese soul foods! Try different flavors of soy sauce, miso, tonkotsu and more.
Tempura is a dish of vegetables or seafood that are battered with flour, egg and water and deep fried. It is common to eat tempura with soy sauce-based sauce or salt. Main ingredients include prawn, eggplants, sweet potatoes, pumpkins and mushrooms. Best eaten when the batter is hot and crisp. A dish of tempura laid over rice is called Tendon.
Yakitori literally means grilled chicken. Diced chicken are skewed with bamboo skewers, seasoned with yakitori sauce or salt, and then grilled over charcoal flame. Perfect for a little nibble for your beer and almost every izakaya, bar place, has it on their menu. Try different parts from chicken thigh and breast to lever and gizzard.
Completely different from Indian curry, “Curry Rice” has been evolved to suit the Japanese’ taste. This dish made of rice and thick curry sauce on top is very popular for the young and the old in Japan. Anyone can cook it at home using curry roux mix in the shop, so please try making one!
We can’t forget about Okonomiyaki from the list of Japanese soul foods! To cook one, first mix thin-cut cabbage into the basis of dough consisting of flour, egg and water. After which, add main ingredients of your preference – pork, seafoods, cheese or rice cake – then, spread it round on a pan and cook it on heat. After it’s been cooked, top with thick okonomiyaki sauce and mayonnaise and bonito flakes for your preference. You can cook your own in some restaurants, so don’t hesitate to try one!
This dish is made of a big bowl of rice (donburi) and a fried pork cutlet topped with egg. Very popular among young people for its volume.
This is a Japanese fast food ready-to-eat for people on the go. Onigiri is a Japanese home food and every convenience store stocks it. Onigiri is made of rice with ingredients of your choice inside, rolled and wrapped with nori seaweed. Fillings vary from the classics like ume plums, salmon, kombu and bonito flakes to wild ones like yakiniku meat or tempura.
The soup to represent Japan is obviously miso soup. An exquisite combination of miso, which is made of fermented soy beans, and dashi broth speaks for the soul of the Japanese. You can easily try one with freeze-dried ready-to-eat miso soup products. A must for your breakfast.
Japanese bento box is attracting some international attention lately. We pack rice and dishes inside our bento box and bring it to school and workplace. You don’t always have to cook for yourself, buy one at convenience stores at some reasonable price. In addition, stations for long-distance trains have bento shops. Bento box eaten on a train is just exceptional!
Fulfil Your Life in Japan With Japanese Food
If you are living in Japan, why don’t you try some – even if you don’t like it or you don’t know much about it. Food plays a vital part in one’s life. Your life in Japan will surely enrichen with the diverse variety of Japanese dishes available around the country.