As other countries in the world, Japan has its own culture about food, and street food is a part of it. You can’t say that you have been to Japan if you haven’t tried any of these street foods. They are one of the most exciting and effervescent parts of this country – the reverse point of view in comparison with the quite and reserved daily life.
Each year, Japan holds more than 100.000 events and festivals. One of the most attractive features that impress the tourists in those festivals is the streets full of street food stalls selling junk foods, cakes and candies.
8 Remarkable Japanese Street Foods
Street food stalls – called “Yatai” often follow the normal period of events in Japan. It is quite rare to find a small Yatai standing alone in the street or separating from the festivals. You can see that not many cities in Japan have this type of food, but there is sometimes an exception such as Nakasu in Fukuoka – where specialized in selling street foods.
Most of the street foods in Japan were made from the early of the 20th centuries. In some cases, there are some types of food that can be bought at the stalls near the streets but can’t be found in any restaurants. On the other hand, the same dish can be cooked in different styles in restaurants and street stalls. The cook can add different types of seasons so as to make his dish to be unique and unforgettable. Below are some well – known street foods from Japan that you should try when arriving in this country.
Okomoniyaki is a type of pancake. It is savory because of its ingredients. Long time ago, Japanese used leftover food to make okonomiyaki. This type of cake sold at festivals often has more stuffed ingredients such as thick cut bacon.
This is one of the most common types of candy found in Japanese carnivals. Watame is Japanese’s favorite is these occasions This candy is often wrapped in plastic bags decorated with anime characters or J-pop idols.
- Yaki Imo
This is the sweet potatoes put on wooden stove to roast gradually. You can easily look for one of these Yaki Imo trolley booths or carts almost everywhere in Japan. These mobile booths will run around some certain local places with very slow speed. A loudspeaker is equipped on the booths that shout the call repeatedly:” yaki imo… yaki imo…”. Some people say that it is quite funny to hear this call, but others don’t like it because it is too loud. However, these Yaki Imo booths are the symbol of ancient Japan soon faded. That’s the reason why so many people feel very emotional when seeing them around.
It’s so hard to know there are how many crepe stalls in Japan. I guess the number would not be under 10.000. There are so many stalls on the streets or use the mobile booth. This is the favorite fast food for students, especially teen girls. They queue in front of the crepe stall until it is full of students with white shirts and purple skirts.
Crepe is delicious with very cheap price. You can enjoy a crepe with crunchy coat and creamy inside. Having 2 of it can make you full, I’m pretty sure about this.
It is like a thick pancake with red bean inside. They also put meat, eggs, milk and a little bit cheese to make it more colorful and tastier. This cake is quite famous in Japan. It has more than 20 names to call according to the regions of the country, types of cake and the brand.
You should try Imagawayaki right after buying to enjoy the hot and creamy feeling when chewing the cake. It is very juicy and tasty when served hot.
Interestingly, this street food is from China. However, it is very popular in Japan. Nikuman is the Japanese name for meat dumplings.
In Japanese towns which consist of a high percentage of office employees, there are many Bento stalls on the streets. On weekdays, these stalls only open for 1 or 2 hours at lunchtime. Within 10 to 15 minutes, all the Bento will disappear completely.
In fact, the business has never been an easy task because the revenue of a Bento stall relies heavily on the number of loyal customers. In Japan, office employees always put their lunch on top of everything, so they can even spend the whole morning to decide what to eat for lunch. What they look for is a full and delicious lunch.
Hence, restaurants, stalls, malls and street food stalls compete with each other very hardly. According to some unofficial rules, well – known Bento street stalls would have the chance to welcome a large amount of customer on weekdays.
This is the Japanese name of roasted squids. The squids are roasted whole, then served on a plate with sauce to eat with. This is one of the cheapest seafoods in Japan coastal regions. It is delicious and easy to eat.
These are some examples about the diversity and colorful street food culture of Japan street foods. With the huge number of festivals and events, street food stalls have to cook well to win the customer’s heart. In fact, when eating street foods in Japan, you can feel comfortable about the quality of the food as well as the services. After a hard day working or studying, there is nothing better than eating street foods and have a glass of wine. Street foods in Japan is very unique with the appearance of mobile booth and stalls that are made from wood and the way their owners dress. It is one of the most beautiful spots in Japan culture. We can see a traditional Japan which is far different from daily, fast – paced Japan. If you want to travel to this beautiful country, give yourself a try and eat street food there – a memorable experience for everyone.