Osechi is a New Year’s dish.
Osechi began as an offering to the kami of the year.
Many of the dishes are made to last for a long time, but it is based on the custom of avoiding cooking with fire as much as possible, except for making Zoni, which is eaten together with the kamis, as the New Year’s fire is considered sacred.
It is also said that there is an element of releasing women from housework.
Osechi began as an offering to the god of the year.
As Japan’s food culture has diversified and food preservation technology has advanced, a wide variety of dishes, such as raw foods, delicacies, Chinese and Western dishes, are often served in stacked boxes.
Osechi, like Kaiseki in Japan, is a course meal, and can be categorized into five main types.
- Celebratory side dishes
- Grilled food
- Vinegared food
- Simmered food
Osechi are usually packed in a heavy box, with the idea of layering happiness.
A four-tiered box is the most common.
In addition, each dish has a meaning of “good luck”.
- Black soybeans: To ward off evil spirits and wish for longevity and good health so that one can work hard and be as skilled as one can be tanned black.
- Herring roe: For the prosperity of descendants
- Tazukuri: Wishing for a good harvest
- Tatakigobo (burdock): Wishing for a strong foundation for the house
- Red and white kamaboko (fish paste): Red means to ward off evil, white means cleanliness, and white means “congratulations”.
- Datemaki: Wishing for increased knowledge
- Kinton: Wishing for good luck with money
- Red and White Namasu: Prayers for Peace and Tranquility
- Teriyaki yellowtail: Wishing for success in life
- Kuruma-ebi: Wishing for long life
- Boiled clam: Wishing for marital bliss
- Kelp rolls: Wishing for prosperity of offspring
- Chikuzen-ni: Wishing for long-lasting happiness
There is a typical menu called “three kinds of Celebratory side dishes”, and it is believed that if these three dishes (plus rice cakes) are prepared, the Osechi is ready to welcome the New Year.
- Black soybeans
- Herring roe
- Kanto area：Tazukuri、Kansai area：Tatakigobo (burdock)
Osechi is a dish that is eaten on New Year’s Day, and We think it tastes even better if you eat it while feeling what kind of meaning is put into each dish.