Japanese cooking teaches us a lesson in the wisdom of rejuvenating and healing the body through food. The Japanese diet differs from the Western one, first of all, in terms of calorie content, protein and fat consumption.
The process of feeding in the Land of the Rising Sun, which has its own long-standing traditions that go back centuries, is similar to a symphony, where each sound line has a special magical meaning, and all together create real miracles.
The Japanese diet will allow:
- • improve endurance;
- • to strengthen shattered health;
- • forget about age (which Japanese women simply do not have).
Despite the fact that in recent decades the Japanese have begun to show interest in European dishes, preference is still given to traditional dishes of the national cuisine, which are based on the following products:
- • rice;
- • vegetables;
- • Fish and seafood.
Japanese cuisine continues to be specific. The diet here differs from the Western one, first of all, in terms of calorie content, consumption of proteins and fats, as well as in its structure: a clear predominance of plant proteins over animals, and a significant proportion of animal protein is consumed from fish products, and rice occupies an important place… In general, the diet is lower in calories than in most countries.
It is well known that all sane people have long been encouraged to consume less animal fats, foods containing cholesterol, salt and sugar, and instead eat foods that contain enough fiber. And it is Japanese cuisine that largely meets these recommendations.
Basic food rules in Japan
First rule – small portions
Any of us can eat so much and so quickly that it is difficult to realize what, in fact, he ate and what taste it was. It is greedy to swallow unchewed pieces of food, then again and again – until completely drunk. Why are we so foolish that the sin of gluttony ultimately leads us to suffering? Intemperance converts life-saving food into a deadly poison.
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The fact that the Japanese eat in small portions seems to benefit not only their bodies, but also their aesthetic sense.
And the first step that can be taken towards proper nutrition is just to replace the usual immense plates with smaller ones. In a small bowl, you simply cannot physically put a large portion.
Then we act in this way. In the first week, reduce the number of servings by 1/5, the next – by 1/4. Thus, in 3-4 weeks we will be able to halve the usual portion without much effort for ourselves.
When the portion is large, often simply by inertia, without much appetite, a person absorbs such an amount of food that the body does not need at all and even harms. Moderation is at the core of good health. Simply “eating little” is already a way to get rid of some diseases that appear from oversaturation and poisoning.
The second rule is freshness and fit for the season
The fresher the product is used to prepare the dish, the more substances useful and necessary for the body are in it. And the Japanese, as you know, are very sensitive to the freshness of the product from which they are going to cook.
By the presence of this or that product on the Japanese table, you can accurately determine the time of year without looking at the calendar, since the tastes of the Japanese are in complete harmony with nature. They, as a rule, eat only the food that is considered the most juicy and, accordingly, fresh for a particular time. For example, everyone knows that young green tea, bamboo shoots and salmon are especially good in late spring. And in the fall, it is best to put on the table dishes with mackerel and the first matsutake mushrooms.
It’s no secret to anyone that Seasonal vegetables are healthier… And in Japan, the choice of food largely determines the season and time of year. Usually what is in use is exactly what is ripening in the field or in the beds. For example, few Japanese will buy greenhouse strawberries, knowing full well that they are much tastier and healthier in their season. In addition, the Japanese tend to eat exactly the fish that is caught only at this time of the year.
Japan lies in a huge arc from northeast to southwest. And climatic conditions give Japanese cuisine not only seasonal but also local characteristics.
- In the north, for example, rice cannot be cultivated, but the conditions are excellent for growing corn and potatoes, and for raising animals. Food for northerners, in the opinion of the Japanese, should be higher in calories, so the typical ramen noodles in Hokkaido are served with a generous piece of butter. For the same reason – increased energy consumption – in the prefectures of Northern Japan, o-nabe stew made from crabs, shells and pink salmon is very popular. (The waters of Hokkaido are home to innumerable amounts of beautiful salmon.)
- Cuisine also has its own characteristics in the Kanto regions. with centers in Tokyo, Yokohama, as well as the cuisine of the Kansai regions and the Ryukyu Islands. For example, soy sauce in Kanto is noticeably different in taste and color from sauce from Kansai. There are also very important differences for the Japanese in the shape and taste of pickles, sushi and sweets.
- In Kyoto exquisite cuisine, the recipes of which were created thousands of years ago by the chefs of the imperial palace. Nagoya is famous for its udon wheat noodles and sweet rice jelly.
- Pilgrims in Buddhist temples on the island of Shikoku love willows, tangerines and local noodles.
- Ohstrov Kyushu known for its tea, seafood and fruits. The influence of Chinese cuisine is felt here.
The choice of food in Japan, in addition to the season, the climatic zone, is also influenced by the weather. On hot summer days, the Japanese try to eat food that feels cool. And the feeling of freshness, in their opinion, is given by such delicacies as eel, octopus and sea mollusks. They also cool various types of jellies.
In the fall, the Japanese prefer to consume fried chestnuts, buckwheat noodles, and mushrooms.
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In late autumn, they consume sashimi – raw fish cut into strips and sake heated to a temperature of 36.6 degrees. During the cold winter season, the Japanese love warming nabe. They eat this stew directly during cooking, pouring themselves directly from a boiling pan.
And on hot summer days, the islanders eat a cold variety of nabe called shabu shabu.
Thus, in winter cold – meat, fish and warming drinks and soups, in summer heat – cold soups, refreshing species of marine life, cold ramen noodles and salads.
Over the past half century, Japanese cuisine, of course, like the cuisines of any country in the world, has been enriched with a variety of options. fast food… These are hamburgers and chips, popcorn and instant soups. Of course, true connoisseurs of national traditions opposed this process of Americanization. But still, the Japanese did not manage to isolate themselves from the low-nutritional, and sometimes unhealthy fast food options. But they, with their characteristic archaic wisdom, tried to at least to some extent “Japaneseize” overseas dishes. This is how potato chips with seaweed seasoning, spaghetti with cod caviar familiar to the taste of the islanders and ice cream with the addition of green tea appeared …
The third rule is closeness to the natural, original type of product
Japanese cuisine differs from European and even Asian, for example Chinese, in that it shows untold respect for the original appearance of the products, which at the same time should be the freshest and of the highest quality possible.
Local chefs strive to preserve the appearance of fish and vegetables so that after cooking they would visually remain on their own, creating the illusion that nothing happened to them.
The fourth rule is the preservation of vitamins and minerals
How we prepare food is very important. This largely determines how energetically filled the food will be and how much benefit it will bring. The Japanese cook in such a way that vitamins and minerals are well preserved. The correct temperature regime is important here. Special cutting is also important, for example vegetables. The Japanese know how to do this in such a way that vegetables not only look more attractive, but also cook faster. And as you know, the less time spent on cooking, the more vitamins and minerals are stored in the product.
Everyone knows the health benefits of a vegetarian diet. Fiber, vitamins – all this is vital for our body. And it is very accessible to almost every person, no matter how wealthy he is.
Manifold Japanese vegetarian table surprises with ingenuity. There are daikon radish salads and carrot-cucumber sculptures on the table. The Japanese also use wild plants such as gobo burdock root, herbs, algae, which bring vitamins and minerals to the body. In short, there is a lot to learn here.published econet.ru…
From the book “The Japanese Miracle – Food”, Nishi Katsuzo
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PS And remember, just by changing your consumption – together we are changing the world! © econet