An overview of Japanese food (part 1)

Japanese food is one of the most passionate and enthusiastic in the world. Ask any Japanese person about their trip within Japan and the conversation almost includes talk of the local food. In fact, food is often one of the primary motivators for traveling outside of their hometowns of many Japanese.

For this reason, many cities and towns in Japan are known first for their local dishes, no matter if they are a type of sweet, noodle, fish, tofu, or seaweed. The Japanese’s passion for food is so strong that you can turn on your TV and catch a food show at almost any time.

Japanese cuisine is best-known for careful preparation and meticulous presentation. In Japan, food is an art form and even the simplest dishes are usually prepared by chefs who have been trained for years.


Rice, once traded as currency, has been a staple food of the Japanese since over 2,000 years ago and still forms the base of many meals.

The Japanese are reminded of harvesting rice from a very young age. This is the reason why rice is rarely wasted in Japan.

Besides sushi, there are many popular Japanese dishes from rice such as onigiri, donburi, mocha, and chazuke.

Seasonal & local food

Japan is very proud of having four distinct seasons and each season marks delicious offerings. This is very evident in hotels, supermarkets, inns, and restaurants because menus are frequently changed to show what is in season and what is available.

In fact, Japan’s range of food on offer is so diverse that many Japanese would struggle to name all the varieties of mushrooms, seaweed, and fish on their local shop’s shelves.

Kaiseki ryori (Kaiseki cuisine) are small dishes but contain up to 12 beautifully presented courses of simmered, steamed, or grilled dishes, tempura, soup, sliced raw fish sashimi, pickles, rice, and a small dessert.

Thanks to the countless variety of regional food, there is no shortage of restaurants to serve local dishes.


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