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Five things you do not know about Japanese Food

Updated on August 11, 2015
thealpaca profile image

This author is a former I.T. graduate turned vagabond who travelled extensively and has lived and worked in Japan for many years.

Whale Meat in Japanese Supermarkets

Poor people in Japan traditionally ate whale meat. It tastes a little bland so few people in modern day Japan eat it. It is best eaten deep-fried. Whale meat is also not very common in restaurants. However it can be bought from supermarkets.

There is a school lunch menu in Japan with whale served to children to celebrate “Wakayama Day”. Wakayama is a state in Japan famous for whaling. It is also a usual item on the menu in some schools.

Whale meat in Japanese supermarket
Whale meat in Japanese supermarket | Source

Do you think Japan should stop Whaling?

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Cod Sperm

Cod Sperm is called shirako in Japanese. It is male counterpart of caviar. Caviar are fish eggs, shirako is a cod sperm sac. It has a creamy taste and custard like consistency. Best-eaten pan-fried, steamed or deep-fried. Just don’t think about what you are eating to enjoy the taste.

Cod Sperm Meal Japan
Cod Sperm Meal Japan | Source

Raw Chicken Sushi

Raw chicken sushi is served with grated ginger or wasabi to kill any germs, a slice of lemon, and some soy sauce or vinegar. This is not recommended safe to eat if you are feeling weak, as your body may not be able to fight the germs in the meat. Make sure your stomach is in a healthy state before eating it. However if you are healthy raw chicken is perfectly safe to eat. It would not be served if people regularly became ill.

Raw Chicken Sushi Japan
Raw Chicken Sushi Japan | Source

Ikizukuri Live Sashimi

Ikizukuri is the skilled custom of making sashimi from live seafood, usually fish, shrimp or lobster. The animal is cut in such a way that it is still alive with the meat hanging off. Fans claim it makes the fish fresher, enhancing the taste. Therefore ikizukuri is a very controversial practice as you are eating a dying. The video below shows a live fish still breathing on the plate.

Live Sashimi Japan
Live Sashimi Japan | Source

Live Sashimi In Japanese Restaurant

Raw Horse Meat Sushi

Basashi is the Japanese name for raw, thinly sliced horsemeat. It is a favorite dish in southern parts of Japan on the island of Kyushu. Horsemeat is very low in calories and fat, as well as being low in cholesterol. It is also much higher in protein than beef, pork, and chicken. It is usually served with lemon, soy sauce and raw onion to help kill any germs that may be in the meat. Good quality horsemeat is very tasty and tender.

Raw Horse Meat Sushi Japan
Raw Horse Meat Sushi Japan | Source

Have you ever eaten raw meat?

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© 2015 Dave


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    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 

      5 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      Fantastic hub. Great graphics. I am starving at this point. If there had been a voting section at the top of these comments, I would have voted this up and all of the good things. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being Excellent, I would have given you a 10.

    • hamza-1122 profile image

      hamza butt 

      5 years ago from pakistan

      wao thats informative nice keep going

    • thealpaca profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Osaka

      great comments JR Pineda

    • thealpaca profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Osaka

      Yes it does seem cruel. What about game hunting in africa and the US. There are other parts of the world that have cruel traditions too.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Very interesting overview of the food. The Japanese have a lot of interesting dishes to try out!

    • peachpurple profile image


      5 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      Japanese eat live seafood? That is cruel isnt it?


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