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Ishikari is a Japanese version of a salmon soup served in a hot pot. The soup is miso based, and has various types of vegetables in it. The dish originated in Hokkaido, northern Japan, where winters are particularly cold. Hot pot style dishes are great for the winter as the hot soup helps warm one up. The salmon and tofu in this dish provides good sources of protein that can keep one full and feel warmer even longer. Serve with a steaming hot bowl of rice for the perfect meal.

Genghis Khan Nabe is a Japanese’s lamb barbecue famous in Hokkaido.

Ika Somen literally translated as squid somen (a kind of noodle). The squid is cut into thin strips like somen is usually eaten with a dipping sauce.


Sanbei-jiru is а mixture of salmon and various vegetables in a miso soup base. The vegetables include daikon, carrot, potato, аnd onions. This is particularly famous during the cold winter in Hokkaido.

Ruibe, salmon slice froze by winter froze.

A traditional dish of the Ainu, Japan’s northerly indigenous population, ruibe is salmon that has been frozen by the winter frost. Sliced with the sharp edge of an abalone shell to preserve its delicate taste, ruibe melts in the mouth like fine chocolate.



A specialty from Miyaki, Sasakamaboko is steamed fish paste made from fish, salt and sweet rice wine. Steaming and roasting are the common ways to cook it.

Ichigoni is a typical food in the coastal area of Iwate.

Ichigoni is a simple soup dish with sea urchin and sliced abalone, flavored with salt and soy sauce. The name “Ichigoni” means “Boiled Strawberries.” Of course there are no strawberries in the soup; it is named thus because the sea urchin floating in the soup is said to resemble wild strawberries in the morning dew. Today, Ichigoni is available in cans for easy cooking even if it is a bit expensive. You can simply warm it in a pan, or cook rice with it. Try adding a bit of mitsuba ( honeywort ) before eating to make it even more delicious.

Kiritanpo is one of the must-have experiences in Akita.

A popular traditional cuisine of Akita is kiritanpo, usually eaten during mid-September to March, but particularly in November when gluten cakes from newly harvested rice arrive on the market. Kiritanpo is cooked rice that is kneaded and then toasted on a skewer. It is then cut into 5-cm lengths and cooked in a pan with burdock, Chinese leeks, maitake mushrooms and other seasonal vegetables as well as Japanese parsley and chicken.

Gyutan is one of the favorite meat cuts to order at Japanese barbecue restaurants.

Gyutan is grilled sliced beef tongue and the Japanese word gyutan is a combination of the Japanese word for cow (gyu) and the English word tongue (tan). The region in Japan that first started to cook gyutan was Sendai and it was initially considered a rather unusual dish, but gradually gained popularity throughout Japanaround 1950s.

Wanko-soba, or buckwheat noodles, is the Japan’s favorite all-you-can eat noodle dish.

Buckwheat noodles (soba) are served up as a lively eating contest. This local favorite began almost four centuries ago as an efficient way to provide guests with “all-you-can-eat” noodles, and continues today as one of Iwate’s most famous food experiences.

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