What is “Japanese-style” food

by KK

Hi, this is KK, Sushi Artist/Healthy Muffin Maker/Mum 🙂

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Today, I want to discuss about “What is Japanese-style food”.

When I ask my friend, which Japanese food they like, the top 3 answers are:

1.Sushi

2.Teriyaki-chicken

3.Ramen

This is quite interesting because these dishes are not everyday foods. Well, at least not in my house, although I have a friend who eats Ramen (noodles) 5 times a week!

I think these are popular among Australians (or westerners) because that’s what you find at restaurants. In Japan, there are many ” Tei-shoku” restaurants, where they serve “eat at home” kind of meals, and these are composed of rice + miso-soup + main dish + side dish + side dish.

So, if you order “Yaki-sakana Tei-shoku” which means “Grilled fish meal” you will have something like this.

In this meal, you can see rice, miso-soup, spinach in black sesame dressing, koya-tofu and grilled horse mackerel. Very typical meal that we have at home.

However, I think most Japanese households do not eat Japanese food everyday!

Surprised?Instead, we have what I call a “Japanese-style” food, which is a mixture of cuisines around the world.

Someday it might be Italian, someday it might be Thai. I cook pasta+salad+soup at least once a week, and green curry once a month. We also cook Chinese food, Korean food and sometimes French food at home. This is not take away, I actually cook everything from scratch.

One thing in common would be that we eat a lot of vegetable in our meal. I heard that in Australia, an average person would eat 120-130kg of meat every year, but in Japan the number was less than 50kg.(FAO 2007)

Japanese people tend to cook meat with vegetables, and this makes it very healthy. Also economical, since meat is quite expensive in Japan, especially beef.

So, in my definition, “Japanese-style” food is a healthy and economical meal, using vegetables and dry foods like beans and tofu. I use these ingredients when I cook western food too, like  mixing tofu in my hamburger patties.

Also, we use different combination of seasonings, like soy-sauce, miso, mirin, sake, sesame oil, tahini and brown sugar. When I lived in Japan, I actually had 3 different miso (home-made, white-miso and barley miso) , 5 different oils (sesame, rapeseed, olive, avocado and grape seed) and 5 different vinegar (rice, apple, balsamic, yuzu-citrus, and wine) in my kitchen. By using different combination, everyday vegetables like cabbage and pumpkin turns into Italian and Chinese and Korean! This creativity can be considered Japanese too!

The first thing I bought in Australia was soy-sauce, miso, mirin and sake.

Now, I have a lot more seasoning, so I can cook “Japanese-style” meal in Sydney too! More recipes will be introduces for you to enjoy!

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