to A Taste of the Tohoku where you can expand your repertoire of regional dishes. Each post to this page will feature some Tohoku specialty not included in my e-original book, KIBŌ.

  Ozōni MAP

Regional and household differences abound but three elements are common to all versions of ozōni:

  • omochi (rice taffy)... sometimes square and grilled, sometimes round and boiled
  • broth made from fish, shellfish, chicken, mushroom... sometimes clear, sometimes miso-thickened
  • regional delicacies...sourced from local fields and waterways

A Taste of the Tohoku

Eating ozōni, literally the "honored, simmered, miscellany" is a cherished culinary tradition throughout Japan early in the new year. Although it is a nationally shared culinary tradition, recipes vary enormously from region to region. Even within the Tohoku, many styles are enjoyed.

O   お
zō   雑
ni   煮

kozuyu (dried scallop broth) ozōni

No matter where in the world you may be, you can support economic recovery of the region by making a contribution to Sponsor Fellows for Tohoku and Japan’s Recovery. This project, launched and managed by Entrepreneurial Training for Innovative Communities (ETIC) has a dual goal: creating jobs in the area devastated by the disaster and developing a new generation of business leaders in Japan. To learn more about the Fellows Project, click here.

hazé (goby fish)

SENDAI (Miyagi) ozōni
The Sendai version of ozōni makes its clear broth from dried, roasted hazé fish. Each serving is topped with a whole fish and shredded vegetables that have been (naturally) freeze-dried and a dollop of red caviar.

kurumi (walnut) ozōni

The Iwate version of ozōni features a kurumi (walnut) dipping sauce for the soft-and-stretchy omochi that is served initially in the soup bowl.