Making Japanese Breakfast: Japanese Rice, Soup and Cuisine

Get Japanese Cooking Tips to Use when You Serve up Breakfast

Two Japanese eating breakfast

Japanese cuisine is delicious and unique.  This article covers making Japanese-style breakfasts.

You may be wondering, "What is the traditional Japanese breakfast?" Well, here are a few pointers on Japanese cuisine served in the morning. It typically includes the following dishes:

  1. A bowl of rice
  2. Fillet of grilled salted salmon with the skin still intact
  3. A side of pickles (cucumber, radish, and/or eggplant)
  4. One sour plum
  5. A bowl of miso soup
  6. A side of Natto, or fermented soy beans
  7. Several sheets of seasoned seaweed

Keep in mind that Japanese cooking may require you to shop elsewhere. While you can easily purchase Japanese rice, salmon and miso at your local grocery store, you should consider visiting an Asian grocery store to purchase the traditional food like pickles, sour plum, natto and seaweed.

Directions on how to prepare and eat the dishes:

  1. A bowl of rice: The rice should be served hot in a small bowl. Short grain white rice is most widely eaten for breakfast but you can substitute with brown rice if you wish to do so. The other dishes listed below are meant to be eaten with the rice.
  2. Fillet of salted salmon with skin: Salmon, eatenjapanese breakfast the Japanese way is very salty, on the dry side and still has the skin intact. To prepare this dish, liberally rub salt into the fillet and then grill.
  3. A side of pickles: They are typically sold in plastic bags. The most popular breakfast pickles in Japan are the green cucumber, yellow radish, and purple eggplant pickles. This dish adds a lot of color to your breakfast.
  4. One sour plum: The significance of having one red sour plum in any Japanese dish is its subtle representation of the red sun in the Japanese flag. Sour plum has somewhat of an acquired taste because it definitely lives up to its name!
  5. A bowl of miso soup: This is the traditional Japanese soup. You may prepare it with wakame seaweed, daikon radish and/or tofu with green onion. Putting rice in your bowl of soup is considered to be rude so please be careful not to do that.
  6. A side of Natto, or fermented soy beans: If you are feeling adventurous, I suggest you try adding Natto, or fermented soy beans to your dish. The acquired flavor and scent is widely appreciated by many Japanese.
  7. Several sheets of seasoned seaweed: Seasoned seaweed serves as a bridge between the rice and the remainder of the dishes. Eat the it by wrapping a small amount of rice with a bite-sized portion of any of the side dishes and then eating it whole. The combination of flavors is remarkable.

Directions on how to serve the dishes:

  • Serve the rice and miso soup in individual bowls.
  • Arrange the salmon, pickles and sour plum on a rectangular plate.
  • Serve the natto in a small bowl. You may also serve it directly from the container it was purchased in as it is commonly done in Japanese households.
  • Serve the seasoned seaweed on a small rectangular bowl.


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