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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to JapanesePod101.com. This is Talking Japanese Culture, Season 1. In this series, you’ll learn conversation topics that will be handy when you talk to Japanese people. I’m Eric.
In this lesson we will talk about the Top 5 Most Popular Foods in Japan.
The first topic (on the list) is
Japanese-style Fried Chicken, (J: Tori no karaage).
In Japanese, “chicken” is (J:Tori) and “deep-fried cooking” is (J:karaage). So, fried chicken is called (J: Tori no karaage). This is a dish that is loved by people all across Japan, and almost every family has a different variation of this recipe. This is also a popular menu item in Japanese-style pubs called (J: Izakaya), and it’s also a good choice for lunch boxes because it tastes good even when it’s cold.
The next topic (on the list) is
“rice with grilled eel on top” (J: Unajuu).
The name (J:Unajuu) is a combination of the word meaning “eel” (J: Unagi) and the word indicating the square lacquered box in which it is served (J:Juubako). The eel grilled with sweet soy sauce has a different name. It is called (J: Kabayaki).
In Japan, there are dedicated eel-eating-days, (J: Doyo no ushino hi) in July and August. In Japan, it is well-known that eating this nutritious eel dish helps to beat the summer heat.
The next topic (on the list) is
Chinese-style noodles (J: Raamen).
While this dish is of Chinese origin, it’s now considered an indispensable national food in Japan. Dedicated shops are very common all over the country, and every region and shop has its original recipe.
There are three main basic broth types, one made from bean paste (J: miso), the second from soy sauce (J: shooyu), and the third from pork bone (J: tonkotsu). The most famous regional varieties are (J: Sapporo Ramen), from Sapporo, (J: Hakata Ramen), from Hakata in Kyushu Island, and (J: Kitakata Ramen) of Fukushima Prefecture.
The next topic (on the list) is
the most popular one-pot food in Japan, (J: SUKIYAKI).
Sliced beef and vegetables are cooked with soy sauce and sugar in a shallow iron pot put in the middle of the table. Usually people serve themselves directly from the pot and dip the cooked meat and vegetables in fresh raw-egg. (J: Sukiyaki) is a feast that is often enjoyed by groups of families or friends on special occasions or during celebrations, usually during winter.
Last, but not least, is sushi.
There are a number of different styles of sushi, but the most traditional and most popular is bite-size vinegared rice with raw fish on top, called (J: Nigiri Zushi) You can eat it with your fingers – just gently hold the sushi, and dip the fish side only in soy sauce, then eat it in one mouthful. Home-delivered sushi is very common in Japan when people welcome guests or celebrate special occasions. Also, it’s common to go to a conveyor belt sushi restaurant, (J: Kaiten-zushi) to enjoy sushi.
Well, that’s all for this lesson. What are your favorite Japanese foods? Leave us a comment and let us know! Thanks for listening, and we’ll see you next time. Bye!


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