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Japanese tableware

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It is not news that Japan is a country renowned worldwide for its culinary science and exemplary decorum. For centuries, it has developed a real gastronomic culture, whether in its dishes, its way of serving them as well as its way of consuming them.

The art of the Japanese table: a savoir-vivre in its own right

Far from our Western habits and customs, the Japanese do not enjoy their dishes in the same way as us. You must be aware that they use chopsticks, generally made of wood, to eat, but do you know the mistakes not to make when using them?

Firstly, although it may be tempting to prick the food to catch the food, it would be very frowned upon since it is a practice only found during funeral rites. Second, don't play with your chopsticks or chew them if you're eating with Japanese people, that would be rude. Finally, do not pull the dishes with your chopsticks, use the opposite side of your chopsticks to eat from a shared dish and when you no longer use the chopsticks, place them on a chopstick rest which is provided for this purpose. You are at least close to eating with chopsticks, provided of course that you can use them!

Here are some little tips to avoid being frowned upon during the meal. Start the meal by saying “Itadakimasu” which means “I receive”, it is more or less the equivalent of our “bon appetit” which will show your gratitude for the meal you are about to enjoy. Be careful not to blow your nose, although it is permitted in our etiquette to blow your nose at the table, it is not an approved practice in Japan. Take care to finish your dishes carefully because it would be a sign of disrespect to leave food on your plate. Finally, don't hesitate to make some noise when you eat your noodles. Even if making noise while eating is frowned upon here, in Japan noise is interpreted as a way of tasting and appreciating the meal you are eating.

A unique know-how

It is no coincidence that the Japanese are among the biggest consumers of fish in the world. It is a food that they have been able to perfect over time and today they are recognized for mastering the dishes derived from it like no other. Sushi and sashimi have been adopted by us in Europe and particularly in France, we are indeed the biggest consumers of sushi in Europe. This can be seen in particular with the hundreds of points of sale that have opened over the last fifty years with large groups like Sushi shop or Planet Sushi.

However, the culinary richness of Japanese gastronomy is not limited to its sushi and sashimi. Whatever the dish, they always attach great importance to the visual aspect of it. We can also compare this to the floral arrangement of ikebana, which is also distinguished by its visual elegance. We also find in their cuisine the intimate relationship they have with nature since a dish is judged to be successful when it combines the five elements of nature (in particular with its colors), that is to say fire, metal, water, wood and earth

However, what would a beautiful Japanese dish be if it was not highlighted? This is precisely the role of Japanese tableware which has the habit of using the principle of contrast to highlight its different dishes. And this both for the form and for the color. If a dish is round it will be given a square plate, and if it is rather light in color it will be presented with a black plate.

Essential tools to become an ace in Japanese tableware

As you will have understood, knowing how to cook Japanese is not enough to fully adopt Japanese gastronomy on a daily basis. It is important to equip yourself with adequate table service which includes at least plates for main courses, bowls for rice, ramen and soup (ideally each are different bowls), chopsticks for not having to eat with your fingers and at best chopstick rests which prevent you from putting your chopsticks on the table (this is quite frowned upon in Japan).

You will therefore find here on our store In the heart of Japan a fairly wide choice of Japanese tableware which will allow you to enhance your dishes and present them elegantly to your guests. With that, Itadakimasu! 🍜

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