1. Home-cooked Food
Home-cooked food in Japan is the best way to experience real Japanese dishes. Japan is known to be one of the healthiest countries, and their dishes are flavorsome, light, healthy, and also simple to cook. There are five basic ingredients needed to create these delightful dishes such as soy sauce, mirin, dashi, sugar, and sake. These light seasonings are used to complement the natural flavors and ingredients. Japanese home dinners usually consist of a single main course with several sides all served at once. A typical Japanese meal is quite balanced when it comes to portions and nutritional benefits. A typical Japanese meal is usually served as a set with rice, soup, protein, salad, vegetables, green tea and desserts.
2. Street Food
Street food in Japan is mostly eaten during festivals. Traditional street food vendors are also known as yatai in Japanese follow an event circuit. Yatai can also be found along the streets, for instance in Ameya Yokocho (Tokyo), Shinsaibashi (Osaka) and Nishiki Market (Kyoto). With over a 100,000 events yearly, a great number of vendors offer both sweet and savory snacks. Some of the most common types of street food include: Takoyaki, Yakitori, Okonomiyaki, Crepes, Yaki Imo, Imagawaki, Ikayaki, Jaga Bata and Taiyaki.
Wagashi is a traditional Japanese confectionary made from plant-based ingredients. Some of these traditional desserts made from anko, mochi and fruits is paired with tea. These delicate desserts are usually served in small portions and is creatively shaped in all kinds of size and colors. Wagashi is known to be a form of art and a progression of aesthetic beauty.
Kaiseki is a beautifully-plated traditional Japanese multi-course dinner. It is a culinary journey not to be missed if you would like to experience dining top-class the traditional Japanese way, but this of course comes highly-priced. Kaiseki is an embodiment of omotenashi which means whole-hearted and involves a lot of special skills of chefs that have been in the industry for generations. Chefs strive for precision in creating these unforgettable dishes and experiences for their guests. A basic course would include an appetizer with sake, a simmered dish, sashimi, selections of the season, a grilled dish, a rice dish, and tea and desserts.