Tasty Dishes Right to Your Table! Top 7 Souvenirs From Japan

  • Categories

    • Souvenirs
    • Food / Gourmet
  • Update date

    • 2020-12-21

Japanese Food Products as Souvenirs

Whether you're buying something for yourself or loved ones, many travelers choose snacks as souvenirs from Japan. In addition to sweets and snacks, we recommend food products that help you prepare Japanese cuisine at home.

This article will feature seven food products you’ll want to hand out as souvenirs. These can be found at supermarkets, discount shops like Don Quijote, and most convenience stores. Enjoy an authentic taste of Japan right at home!

As these are perishable foods, make sure to double-check the expiration date before buying. Products that require refrigeration or are not vacuum-sealed and dried may spoil quickly.

When checking the expiration date, please note that the year comes first in Japan. For example, if the expiration date is December 3, 2020, it will be printed as “2020.03.12.”

7 Non-Snack Food Products for Souvenirs

1. Miso Soup

2. All Kinds of Japanese Soups

3. Ready-Made Japanese Side Dishes

4. Instant Ramen

5. Sushi Mix

6. Instant Blended Seasoning

7. Make White Rice Tastier with Toppings

8. Bonus Content: Japanese Rice

1. Miso Soup

Miso soup, which is made with fermented soybean paste, is a staple of Japanese cuisine.

Imagine that you're suddenly craving this delicious soup at home; if you decide to cook it yourself, you'll need to have miso and dashi stock on hand. Once you find a recipe, it also takes practice to make it properly.

While this may sound okay for those who love cooking, what should you do if you’re not confident in the kitchen?

We recommend instant miso soup. Stop by a supermarket to find a variety of products from ready-to-eat miso cups to freeze-dried powders.

Our writer personally recommends the freeze-dried miso. This product is packed with essential ingredients—soup, wakame seaweed, tofu, and vegetables. All you have to do is pour the contents into a bowl, add hot water, and mix. Making tasty miso soup is now surprisingly simple.

Instant miso costs about 100 yen per serving and is available in two types: single-size packages or a pack. The pack of five pictured above costs 451 yen, which makes it under 100 yen per bowl.

2. All Kinds of Japanese Soups

Nabe (hot pot) is a Japanese dish that many international tourists love. Since it only requires adding vegetables and meat to a broth, it is incredibly easy to prepare and makes a great party dish.

If you're a fan of shabu-shabu, we also recommend adding thinly sliced meat. However, many find prepping the hot pot's broth difficult

You can solve this problem by purchasing a ready-made hot pot soup base.

Soup bases are sold in a variety of flavors such as Japanese-style shellfish stew, sukiyaki sauce, tonkotsu (pork bone) broth, chanko-nabe, soy milk hot pot, miso-flavored broth, kimchi hot pot, and many more. Undiluted liquid products need to be poured into a pot and simmered with your desired ingredients. These are priced around 300 to 400 yen.

If you prefer to fly with souvenirs packed into carry-on bags, undiluted liquid products may be slightly inconvenient to bring home.

We suggest purchasing a soup concentrate product, which only requires diluting the mix with water. These are sold in small packages or pods. The yaki-ago (dried flying fish) dashi nabe soup base (pictured right) costs 268 yen and includes four serving-sized packets. The yosenabe (combination hot pot) soup pods (pictured left) is also 268 yen and includes six serving-sized pods.

Those who love cooking may try making the broth from scratch using dashi stock. But you may find that katsuobushi (dried bonito flakes) and konbu seaweed—two key ingredients for making dashi—aren’t easily available outside of Japan.

This won't be an issue if you've bought a concentrated dashi soup base called tsuyu. To use this soup base, all you have to do is dilute it with water and adjust the flavor with your desired seasonings.

Tsuyu also serves as a dipping sauce for udon, soba, and shabu-shabu. Additionally, this condiment is used to flavor Japanese-style simmered dishes.

...... read the rest of the article on the MATCHA website: