Happy 2014!

1 01 2014

The new year holiday period, technically the first three days of the year, is decidedly the most important holiday for the Japanese people when family members get together and celebrate by feasting on special dishes we only eat during the festive season.  So I am home, i.e. at my parents’, enjoying food and drinks of the new year.

But before the new year arrives, we start the feast on New Year’s Eve.  Here is how.

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Eating soba on New Year's Eve is another tradition.  May we all live long like the long soba.

Eating soba on New Year’s Eve is another tradition. May we all live long like the long soba (which is just one of the explanations given as to why we eat soba at the end of the year. There are other versions.)

And happy January 1, 2014!

Osechi from one of my favorite restaurants.  Mother's homemade version is better but she stopped making it several years ago and I never carried on the tradition so here we are.

Osechi from one of my favorite restaurants. Mother’s homemade version is better but she stopped making it several years ago and I never carried on the tradition so here we are.

Homemade by mother - the best.

Homemade datemaki by mother – the best.

Drinking at breakfast.

Drinking at breakfast. The “first” meal of the year is the most important one.

Our white-miso based ozouni.

Our white-miso based ozouni.

I love the lacquer boxes my mother uses.  She got them from her mother.

I love the lacquer boxes my mother uses. She got them from her mother. At lunch time, we moved onto the big bottle of sake from Yamagata.

New year holiday vocab:

Osechi ryouri

If you scroll down the above to “Examples of osechi dishes”, “datemaki” is explained.

Ozouni

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