Once known in the west either in the form of "sukiyaki" or the more exotic "sushi," Japanese cuisine has in recent years become much more familiar and appreciated around the world. Many visitors to Japan will have already sampled the pleasures of raw fish or batter-fried shrimp. But few first-time visitors to Japan are prepared for the variety and sumptuousness of Japanese food, as it is traditionally prepared. Eating in Japan is an experience to be enjoyed and remembered fondly for the rest of your life.
Sukiyaki is prepared right at the table by cooking thinly sliced beef together with vegetables, tofu and vermicelli.
Tempura is food deep-fried in vegetable oil after being coated with a mixture of egg, water and wheat flour. Among the ingredients used are prawns, fish in season and vegetables.
Sushi is a small piece of raw seafood placed on a ball of vinegared rice. The most common ingredients are tuna, squid and prawns. Cucumber, pickled radish and sweet egg omelet are also served.
Sashimi is sliced raw fish eaten with soy sauce.
Kaiseki ryori is regarded as Japan's most exquisite culinary refinement. Consisting mainly of vegetables and fish with a seasoning base of seaweed and mushrooms, the dishes are characterized by their refined savor.
Yakitori is made up of small pieces of chicken meat, liver and vegetables skewered on a bamboo stick and grilled over hot coals.
Tonkatsu is a deep-fried pork cutlet rolled in breadcrumbs.
Shabu-shabu is tender, thin slices of beef held with chopsticks and swished around in a pot of boiling water, then dipped in sauce before being eaten.
Soba and udon are two kinds of Japanese noodles. Soba is made from buckwheat flour and udon from wheat flour. They are served either in a broth or dipped in sauce and are available in hundreds of delicious variations.