Every nation must have rules that apply, including ethics in terms of eating. Likewise with the Japanese.
Japan is famous for its culture and customs. One of them is their unique eating etiquette, reflecting the whole culture.
Also read: How to hold chopsticks properly, eating Japanese style
Learning the etiquette of eating in Japan is not only important when going to Japan, but it can also build good communication when meeting or dining with Japanese people.
Here is the etiquette of eating in Japan, as reported by Livejapan.com and TheSpruceEats.
1. Start by saying "itadakimasu" Japanese people have a habit before starting to eat by saying "itadakimasu".
Itadakimasu literally means accepting humbly or thankfully accepting food. However, the meaning also serves as a greeting for a meal.
After thatadakimasu is said, then food can be eaten by paying attention to some eating etiquette.
2. Remove the rice or soup bowl and eat while holding the bowl When eating rice which is part of Japanese food, the bowl must be held in one hand.
Three to four fingers support the bottom of the bowl, with your thumbs resting on the sides.
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Then, use chopsticks to scoop a small portion of the rice from the bowl to the mouth.
The bowl should not be brought to the mouth, but held close enough to catch any accidentally dropped rice.
3. Eat miso soup from a bowl Another Japanese custom is to drink miso soup or "miso shiru" straight out of a bowl, as there are no spoons. A small bowl of soup is placed in one hand, with four fingers supporting the bottom of the bowl, while the thumb is placed on the side of the bowl.
Also read: Miso Soup Recipe, Japanese Home Cooking
The way to eat the contents of miso soup is using chopsticks.
However, the bowl remains in one hand and is lifted closer to the mouth, just like when eating rice rice.
4. Use each chopsticks to pick up food Japanese food usually consists of several different side dishes. Sometimes these side dishes are served in very small portions on individual plates.
For that, the side dishes are eaten using individual chopsticks, or in Japanese it is called "jikabashi".
When you want to take side dishes, you don't need to lift the plate to your mouth, just take it using chopsticks.
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If there is a large meal, you can also cut it with chopsticks to enjoy.
Sometimes side dishes will be served family style, that is, in a larger bowl. Usually, there will be separate equipment for each side dish.
If the utensils are not available, you can use the back or top end of the chopsticks to serve some of the food to the plate.
This is to prevent germs from the bottom end of the chopsticks entering our mouths.
5. Do not put side dishes on the rice Illustration of Japanese people eating. See Photos According to the Japanese, if a side dish is placed on top of rice, it will make the rice dirty.
For them this is not beautiful to look at. Instead, feed the side dishes directly to the mouth.
6. Sashimi, soy sauce and wasabi should be put separately A good way to serve sashimi is to put the sashimi on a separate plate. Then prepare another, smaller, empty plate for a serving of soy sauce.
When eating sashimi, you should dip each piece in a separate container of soy sauce and wasabi, then enjoy.
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Not mixing wasabi or Japanese radish with soy sauce.
According to the Japanese, it is not appropriate to remove soy sauce from the table and then pour soy sauce all over the sashimi.
7. Hot towel to clean hands before eating In Japan, hot towels are often provided before meals to clean hands. Because, nigiri sushi is traditionally eaten with the fingers.
To eat nigiri sushi, just take a slice, dip it in soy sauce, then eat it in one bite.
Nigiri sushi is often served on separate plates, along with other dishes containing other smaller dishes, as well as soy sauce and wasabi.
8. How to eat tempura
tempura illustration See Photos Tempura or fried seafood and vegetables, usually served with salt or tempura sauce. This sauce in Japanese is called tsuyu.
The tsuyu sauce is usually served with a small plate of grated radish and grated ginger.
Before dipping the tempura, you can add radish and ginger to the tsuyu sauce.
If there is salt, simply dip the tempura in salt or sprinkle in a little salt. on top of the tempura.
9. There are rules behind using chopsticks Japanese food is often served on the table with a pair of chopsticks resting on top of the chopsticks.
If you stop for a drink while you eat, place the chopsticks back on the back first.
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If there are no chopstick rests provided, simply place the chopsticks neatly on the plate or bowl.
The same is true when the meal ends.
10. Elbows should not be placed on the table Elbows should not be on the table while eating. According to the Japanese, it describes the image of a person who is naughty.
Apart from keeping your elbows away from the table, your hands should not be hidden under the table while eating.
11. Say "gochisou-sama" when you finish eating "Gochisou - sama" in Japanese is pronounced to indicate that you feel full and enjoy a meal, such as "thank you for this delicious meal" or "I'm done eating".
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These expressions usually refer to the host, the family member who cooks the meal, the chef or restaurant staff, or even to yourself.