Immune-strengthening foodstuff from Japan

They say attack is the best form of defense. This popular wisdom might help if you have a shifty character following you on your way home. However, chances are that the tiniest of creatures will wage war on us instead of tough criminals creeping up from behind. What they want is to do harm to […]

„Kawaii, ne?”–Cute, isn’t it?!

I suppose all of us have seen–or at least caught a glimpse of–manga comics or anime cartoons. If not, I am absolutely sure that almost everybody would recognize Pikachu’s figure or have come across the Hello Kitty-phenomenon. What it all comes down to is, there is  a certain childlike quality that define these cartoon characters: […]

The mysteries of Japanese cuisine–mirin, the secret ingredient

I wonder how many of us (us meaning fans of Asian cuisine) have wondered what makes Asian–actually, Japanese- dishes so different in taste. Ramen or teriyaki, and even miso are so uniquely distinct from what we are used to…but how so? To answer the question one has to be a bit of a gourmand…or just […]

Tokyo’s treasures: Nakameguro– life on the riverside

As I was reading about the fascinating parts of Tokyo–each astonishing in its own right–, I came across the district of Nakameguro. I immediately knew this was just the place for me, so if I could ever visit this amazing city, I would make sure to go and check it out. The jewel in Nakameguro’s […]

Bizarre dishes from Japan: funazushi

„Have some sushi!”–we could advise our friend on going to a Japanese restaurant for the first time in their life and being a bit wary of trying Asian food. That is good advice indeed: you can’t go wrong with sushi. Fish is good. Rice is good. Wasabi–even if some people have strong, VERY strong reservations […]

Romantic obligations: Valentine’s Day in Japan

Rose petals scattered on the bed…heart-shaped boxes full of gourmet sweets and long, romantic walks with the One…any of these images will remind us of that certain day of the year when romantic love is to be celebrated: Valentine’s Day. The origins of this holiday date back to the ancient Roman Empire: under the reign […]

Seven times down, eight times up: the story of the Daruma doll

In Japan, lucky charms, talismans and mojos are an essential part of everyday life. All of them are bound to bring the owner good luck and keep away misfortune; we could write another post every week for the rest of our lives if we wanted to, and we still wouldn’t run outof them or get […]

3+1 weird snacks and beverages from Japan

I think it is a familiar situation for most of us when we talk enthusiastically about our favourite local specialties with friends from other countries, but their reactions, instead of mirrorring our eagerness, are those of horror or disgust. Or at least raised eyebrows. I had this experience when trying to describe Túró Rudi, an […]

Aid for the tired stomach: the Festival of Seven Herbs

In Japan, the arrival of the new year is abound with traditions and customs that bring good luck and clear conscience. Just as Christmas is the biggest celebration of the year in our country, Shogatsu, the festive period of the New Year is the most significant social and religious tradition Japan. This is the time […]