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Japanese Rice Crackers: Senbei (煎餅) vs Okaki (おかき)

Senbei Japanese Rice Crackers

Rice crackers can be found in every shape, color and flavor in Japan. From savory to sweet, there’s a rice cracker to fit every occasion and taste. Each region has its own specialty based on local ingredients which are then baked, grilled or fried. Most rice crackers in Japan however, fall into two main categories based on the rice used and their shape: Senbei (煎餅) and Okaki (おかき).

RECIPE: Shio Koji (Salted Rice Malt) Tomato Pasta

JAPANESE RECIPE: Shio Koji (Salted Rice Malt) Tomato Pasta
Shio Koji (also known as salted malt rice) helps to enhance flavors and is a great salt substitute. Try it in this quick and easy tomato pasta to bring out the flavors of the tomatoes and to create a tomato sauce that can be used for chicken and fish as well!

RECIPE: Japanese Poke Bowl

RECIPE: Japanese Poke Bowl

Poke has become an incredibly popular dish in the west. Originally from Hawaii, this dish is heavily influenced by Japanese cuisine and is light, refreshing and easy to make. It combines sashimi (raw fish) with fresh seasonal ingredients and is topped with a soy sauce and sesame vinaigrette. Bring the taste of the island to you home!

RECIPE: Low Carb/High Protein Oyakodon (Chicken and Egg Rice Bowl)

RECIPE: Low Carb/High Protein Oyakodon (Chicken and Egg Rice Bowl)

Oyakodon is one of Japan's most popular rice bowls, or donburi. The literal translation come from oya which means parent, ko which means child and don which bowl. It's a play on words as its main ingredients are chicken and egg. For those looking for a low carb alternative, you can try our Low Carb/High Protein Oyakodon which provides all the comfort and protein without the high carb rice.

RECIPE: Braised New Potatoes with a Sweetened Soy Sauce

Japanese recipe: Braised new potatoes with sweetened soy sauce
RECIPE: Braised New Potatoes with a Sweetened Soy Sauce

RECIPE: Mozuku (Okinawan Seaweed) Pancake

JAPANESE RECIPE: Mozuku (Okinawan Seaweed) Pancake

Found only in the seas surrounding Okinawa, Japan’s southernmost tropical islands, mozuku is a type of brown seaweed that is known for its slimy texture and delicious health benefits. Rich in minerals and fucoidan, mozuku is said to contribute to the Okinawans’ longevity (the archipelago is home to some of the longest living people on earth!). Try this easy to make recipe to enjoy the local flavors of this Okinawan speciality.

Different Shades of Donburi (Rice Bowl Dishes)


If you've ever visited Japanese restaurants, you've likely seen donburi on the menu. Donburi, or rice bowls, are the perfect choice for a quick and delicious meal in Japan. Named for the large bowl that the dish served in, called a “don”, donburi combines a bowl of steamed rice with meat, vegetables and sauce, and is usually served with a side of pickles and miso soup. It's an all-in-one meal that’s both convenient and filling. 

Japanese Comfort Food: Food of the Heart, Food of the Home

Japanese Comfort Food: Food of the Heart, Food of the Home

As is the case with many things in traditional Japanese culture, simplicity seems to be key even in home cooking. Many of the dishes close to people’s hearts are the ones that embrace the wabi-sabi, the imperfections and sometimes the rough nature of home cooking. They are made just as much by the intent going into them as they are by their individual ingredients.

Obaachan’s (Japanese Grandmother's) Miso Soup

Japanese miso soup

Many lessons we learn from Japanese grandmother's revolve around cooking, with one dish in particular being a simple yet important part of Japanese cuisine: miso soup.

RECIPE: Hōtō Udon Hot Pot 

RECIPE: Hōtō Udon Hotpot

Hōtō noodles feel like a warm hug from obaachan. With a texture more similar to dumplings than noodles, hōtō noodles are thick, rustic noodles that are wider and doughier than regular udon noodles.

The Guide to Japanese Noodles

The Guide to Japanese Noodles

Noodles have a rich history in Japan and are integral to Japanese cuisine. They're extremely versatile and can be enjoyed in soups, stir-fries, dipped in sauces or in salads. Some of them may seem similar but there are countless varieties based on the ingredients and regional flavors. There's a noodle for every taste!

Food Etiquette in Japan

Etiquette rules on how to eat sushi, ramen and other Japanese food in Japan

Food and etiquette are an important part of Japanese culture and we would like to shed light on some specific Japanese dishes that have their own rules, including sushi, ramen and boxed meals known as bentos. This will help you as you travel through Japan!