Happy New Year! Traditional Japanese Osechi Ryori

I go back and forth about the idea of making New Year’s resolutions. A part of me (about 95% of me) thinks it’s pretty lame. Come on, what makes me believe that I’m going to finally overcome something that I could not do or stay committed for the last 364 days, simply because it’s the first of January? On the other hand, the optimistic part of me (which admittedly rarely peaks its head) likes the whole ritualistic aspect of starting the year fresh. So I compromised and decided to make a “To Do Checklist” for 2008 instead. Those are more realistic, action-oriented, hopefully obtainable goals, and none of the “I’m-going-to-lose-50 lbs.-by-April” crap.

1. Knit a cable knit bag.
2. Pack my own lunch as frequently as possible.
3. Visit 10 new restaurants.
4. Never go to sleep angry and tell loved ones how much I love them every day.
5. Start Etsy business.

Easy enough? We’ll just have to see (sorry, they weren’t really food related except for two)!

Well, here’s a New Year’s ritual that I can 100% appreciate – osechi ryori. The first picture on top is from last year (New Year’s 2007), courtesy of my boyfriend’s family who prepared this beautiful boxed edible art for us. The rest are courtesy of my mother who slaved away in the kitchen the last two days to bring her family the Japanese New Year tradition this year.  Thank you, mom!  I love you!


Nimono — one of my favorite dishes of all time!


Burdock (gobo) Kinpira


Takosu (octopus marinated in vinegar .. yum) and tazunoko (herring roe .. eeewww)


Mashed yam and chest nuts

Happy New Year, everyone! May 2008 bring good health, happiness and friendship to you and your loved ones .. and of course, good food!

8 thoughts on “Happy New Year! Traditional Japanese Osechi Ryori

  1. Happy New Year Hirono! My mom was in Japan so no osechi for me but looking at your pics makes me feel at home. I did manage to have some toshi-koshi soba though! Anyway, I hope you meet all your resolutions and have a wonderful 2008!


  2. Hi Crazy4Cheese! Thank you for the comment. Hee hee .. some Japanese food can look at bit strange for sure (look at that pickled octopus!!!). but they are so delicious! Happy new year and thank you so much for stopping by!


  3. Hi Keizo! Happy New Year to you too! Too bad you couldn’t eat osechi this year! I had toshi-koshi soba too and it was so good : – ) Isn’t Japanese culinary tradition just the best?

    Wishing you all the best in 2008!


  4. i must say it was one of the best meals i’ve ever had in my life. the nimono was so tasty, kinpira was in best texture, and so was the rest of the dishes. dashi for the ozoni was to perfection too. and the pork nimono was to die for! (i didn’t see takosu come my way, but i don’t think i’m ready for that anyway…)

  5. and don’t forget to mention how HEALTHY those root vegetables are… and shiitake mushrooms and the rest of the veggies – bamboo shoots, carrots, gobo, sesame… i’m so glad i’m japanese : )

    p.s. do you have the s-family pork dish recipe?

  6. Pingback: Japanese Meat and Potato: Nikujaga « Time for Dinner

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