Questions tagged [food]

食べ物. Words and phrases for food and drinks or related to their preparation, consumption, tradition, and other aspects.

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What's the difference between "さけ" (sake) and "しゃけ" (shake)?

Today I saw onigiri claiming to contain "しゃけ" (shake). When I asked my friend what that was, she said it was the same as "さけ" (sake), "salmon". So are these two just different readings of a kanji, ...
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22 votes
2 answers
33k views

Words/characters for fast food meal sizes: 並, 大, 特

When dining at Yoshinoya I never know how to ask for the size meal I want. Their sizes are 並, 大, and 特. I only know that "大" means big, but it also has two readings so I have no idea whether to ask ...
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22 votes
2 answers
2k views

Most appropriate word for 'food'

I have seen many ways of saying 'food'. I am wondering if there is ever a difference in appropriateness. 食品、食べ物、~物(type+物)、飯、ご飯、etc. Most commonly, I think, is 食べ物, but I thought I'd use 食品 for an ...
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21 votes
4 answers
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Since Japanese already had several words for rice why was "ライス" (raisu) borrowed from English?

Last night I had dinner in a ramen restaurant in northern Japan and was surprised to read the katakana "ライス" (raisu) on the menu. This is obviously the English word "rice" borrowed. But what kind of ...
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18 votes
6 answers
66k views

What's the difference between "gohan" and "meshi"?

In answer to my question on the difference between "gyūdon" and "gyūmeshi" I learned that "meshi" just means cooked rice. But I thought "gohan" meant cooked rice, so please, what is the difference? I ...
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18 votes
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5k views

Differences between the many words for dinner

According to my dictionary, the following words all mean the same thing: "Dinner": [夜]{よる}ご[飯]{はん}, [晩]{ばん}ご[飯]{はん}, [晩飯]{ばんめし}, [晩食]{ばんしょく}, [夕]{ゆう}ご[飯]{はん}, [夕飯]{ゆうはん(ゆうめし)}, [夕食]{ゆうしょく} A similar ...
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15 votes
3 answers
9k views

Why are the names of plants and animals often written in katakana?

I was wondering why fruits, vegetables, animals and plants, are written in katakana? Often, there exist kanjis for those, so why aren't they written with those kanjis instead? For example: カマキリ ...
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  • 501
14 votes
2 answers
2k views

What is the etymology of [山葵]{わさび}?

I know that "わさび" 'wasabi' can also be written using kanji as "山葵" and that these two characters mean respectively "mountain" and "hollyhock", but hollyhock doesn't seem at first glance to be related. ...
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14 votes
2 answers
787 views

Different conventions for animal meat

After reading this awesome question, I got to thinking about different animal meat. Upon researching a little, there seems to be different conventions in referring to different meats. Using 訓読み (...
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13 votes
2 answers
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Would I have 牛乳 or ミルク with my cereal?

I've just found out that there's a couple of words for milk, and that they have slightly different meanings. Which one would I have with my Weetbix in a "viking style" breakfast in Niseko? Based on ...
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12 votes
4 answers
3k views

How would you translate this? バタコチーズライス

So I'm working on translating a short recipe that I found online. The title calls it バタコチーズライス. I know that バタ is "butter", チーズ is "cheese", and ライス is "rice", but I can't for the life of me figure ...
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11 votes
2 answers
1k views

What words are used for dolphin meat?

What words are used for dolphin meat? Searching jisho.org using "dolphin" in the English field listed several different words for dolphin, but no compounds involving meat. Neither the English nor ...
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11 votes
1 answer
19k views

On "おてもと" and its many variants for "chopsticks"

I've always known the Japanese word for "chopsticks" to be (お)箸{はし}. Today in my usual practice of reading everything around me I looked up what was written on the wrapper of the disposable ...
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11 votes
2 answers
19k views

Onigiri and nigiri

I was reading this two articles: Onigiri wikipedia's article Nigiri explanation inside wikipedia's sushi article I first thought that onigiri was a type of sushi but it's not. It calls my attention ...
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10 votes
4 answers
2k views

How to actually order fast food?

Alright I've been told so many different things on how to order, specifically fast food and for some reason I have never gotten a straight answer. The popular ones is to say ____をください or _____ お願いします....
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9 votes
2 answers
843 views

つけ用 in Udon preparation recipe

I have the following text on some Sanuki Udon I brought home with me ;) This is the part for ざるうどん: 水洗いした麺をざるに盛り、あらかじめ用意したつけ用つゆに、生姜、ねぎ、ごまなどお好みの薬味を添えてお召し上がりください。 So, つゆ is the sauce or soup, ...
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9 votes
1 answer
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Meaning of もったいないお化けがでる

I came across もったいないお化けがでる What does that mean?
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9 votes
1 answer
4k views

What is the difference between "meshi" and "don" for the food sometimes translated as "rice bowl" in English?

I'm a big fan of the Japanese fast food gyudon (cooked thinly sliced beef strips on top of a bowl of boiled white rice) and its variants such as butadon (the same but with pork). But why do some ...
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9 votes
2 answers
326 views

Etymology of "よう" in "豆腐{とうふ}よう"

I found out there is a special kind of Okinawan tofu called 豆腐よう. According to EDIC/WWWJDIC it can also be written as "豆腐餻" and "唐芙蓉". "餻" seems to mean "cakes, pastry", but considering that this is ...
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8 votes
1 answer
12k views

What's the difference between "マグロ" (maguro), "ツナ" (tsuna), and "シーチキン" (shiichikin)?

It seems that there are (at least) three words for "tuna" in Japanese: "マグロ" / "鮪" / "まぐろ" (maguro) - Seems to be the native name for the creature and used at least in sushi "ツナ" (tsuna) - Seems to ...
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8 votes
1 answer
1k views

Are the names of some food items written in katakana?

Japanese for Busy People 1 (lesson 11) mentions when talking about [キス]{kisu} (whiting) at a [てんぷらや]{tempura-ya}: NOTE: Names of fish, fruits and vegetables etc. are sometimes written in katakana. ...
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7 votes
4 answers
3k views

Is there a word for the type of onigiri that comes in the triangular wrap that keeps the nori fresh?

The term "onigiri" covers all kinds of rice balls, with or without filling, and with or without nori seaweed around it. Is there a specific term that only covers the one class of onigiri available in ...
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7 votes
2 answers
1k views

What's the difference between "巻寿司" (makizushi), "海苔巻き" (norimaki), and "巻物" (makimono)?

It seems there are three words for the same Japanese food item, a kind of "sushi in a long roll": "巻寿司" (makizushi) "海苔巻き" (norimaki) "巻物" (makimono) Are they all identical / synonyms? Do they refer ...
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7 votes
1 answer
648 views

Special Katsudon table with a light?

Based on the text below, apparently there is a special type of table in some Japanese restaurants made for eating Katsudon. どうしてレストランのテーブルにデスクランプがあるんだろう。 デスクランプのあるテーブルを挟んで座るって、なんだか取調室を連想させる。...
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6 votes
3 answers
6k views

Does "おつまみ" (otsumami) mean "snack" or "rice crackers" or "crunchy snack" like chips and peanuts, or something else entirely?

This is a word I learned by reading and not by studying or in conversation with Japanese. After learning the kana years ago I had occasion to fly with JAL and the pre-meal snack was a little packet ...
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6 votes
4 answers
4k views

How to ask whether a dish is pescetarian-friendly?

I'm traveling to a smallish city in Japan a little over a week from now (I'll be there two weeks), and I'm wondering what is the best way to ask a server whether or not a particular dish is ...
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6 votes
2 answers
213 views

Difference between ビーフ and 牛肉

Is there a difference on how these two words should be used? I see 「牛肉{ぎゅうにく}」 used a lot more than 「ビーフ」, but I'm wondering if there is a certain context for each of the two words.
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6 votes
1 answer
523 views

Is there a Japanese word for "area with a collection of izakaya stalls or booths"?

I know that the traditional Japanese style pubs that serve food as well as drinks are called "居酒屋". But once a few years ago in Yamagata city, and last night here in Kagoshima city, I ended up in a ...
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6 votes
2 answers
390 views

Which part is the tail in 人参{にんじん}の尻尾{しっぽ}

What is meant by a "carrot tail"? 人参{にんじん}の尻尾{しっぽ} Is it the green part or the orange part? A google image search does not really help, since "carrot" comes up in every one, but no picture I have ...
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5 votes
4 answers
2k views

What is the etymology of the word Katsu?

I heard from an English man that the katsu karē (カツカレー) dish was from English inspiration originally: he told me that the word 'katsu' is coming from cutlet and 'karē' would be curry. Please can ...
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5 votes
4 answers
660 views

Why is coffee with shochu or awamori called コーヒー割{わ}り "split / divided coffee"?

About five nights ago I went out with a local friend to a traditional Okinawan club in Naha. We were of course drinking 泡盛{あわもり} (awamori) with water and ice. But the girl working there had a drink ...
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5 votes
5 answers
382 views

What does 「歴史を刻め」 even mean?

I looked up some recipes in Japanese and I couldn't help but notice the phrase 「歴史を刻め」 virtually everywhere. I might be stupid but I can't seem to understand what "mincing history" means. What gives?
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5 votes
3 answers
504 views

What is a 丁寧 food?

When eating ramen, a Japanese person commented on how the ramen of this shop are 丁寧. What does 丁寧 means in the context of food? 丁寧 means polite in social contexts, but I am not sure it the same ...
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5 votes
3 answers
2k views

How to say "garlic", "garlic clove" and "garlic bulb" in Japanese?

I was thinking how I'd write a recipe in Japanese which uses 2 garlic cloves, so I've put those terms on google translate and got the following results: garlic: ニンニク garlic clove: にんにく garlic bulb: ...
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5 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to say pork loin in Japanese

How do you say pork loin in Japanese? Jisho.org says it should be ロース, but it seems too vague since I want to use it in a recipe. What about 豚ロース肉?
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  • 269
5 votes
1 answer
486 views

Are 清酒{せいしゅ} and 日本酒{にほんしゅ} two words for the same thing?

As well as the several other kinds of Japanese alcoholic drinks I seem to have found two words which both mean the drink known in the west as "saké". Now I know 酒{さけ} can be used for many kinds of ...
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5 votes
1 answer
844 views

Japanese wheel mortar

What is the Japanese word for a wheel mortar? This is a mortar that is shaped like a boat or a trough, and a wheel with a hole in it through which there is a wooden axle. The operator pushes the wheel ...
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5 votes
2 answers
221 views

How did Japanese obtain a unit of measure called a カップ that's 200 mL?

I've encountered a measuring cup which has units of カップ, 水mℓ (水ml), 米[unknown kanji]g and [three unknown kanji]g. 1 カップ corresponds exactly to 200 水mℓ. According to Wikipedia, there's a Japanese cup ...
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5 votes
1 answer
212 views

What word that resembles "teikkai" might refer to "the provenance of a food"?

The introduction to the 10th Anniversary Edition of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone contains the following passage on page 4 (emphasis added): Vegetarians have often used the phrase "I don't eat ...
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4 votes
2 answers
868 views

What would be the specific name of this type of bowl?

The closest thing that I can find is Donburi? but that seems more like types of food not bowls. ADDING: This is about 15 and a half cm/6in
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  • 245
4 votes
2 answers
3k views

Are "ピーナッツ" and "ピーナツ" both correct for "peanut(s)"?

I've just noticed that the usual word for "peanut" or "peanuts" in Japanese is "ピーナッツ" (pīnattsu), but the first spelling I found, from looking in the translation table in the English Wiktionary was ...
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4 votes
3 answers
532 views

'Hearty' in Japanese

How would one say 'hearty' in Japanese? As in hearty meal, for example.
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4 votes
1 answer
633 views

Counter word for prepackaged instant ramen

What would be the most adequate counter word for this type of instant noodles? Like '1 package of ramen'.
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  • 143
4 votes
1 answer
713 views

「いただきます」 to accept to a food offer?

In this JLPT N3 audio practice question (#3), the correct reply to the statement is 3. コーヒー、もう一杯いかがですか。 けっこうだと思います。 おかげさまで。 いただきます。 If the question translates as "How about another cup of ...
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  • 1,416
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

What is the difference between ガスコンロ and ガスレンジ?

What is the difference between ガスコンロ and ガスレンジ?
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4 votes
1 answer
164 views

How much buzz is there in 式 of 手打ち式 udon noodles?

A lady in front of me in a line to the register had a pack of udon noodles in her basket. It read: うどん・手打ち式 How much buzz is there in such a phrase? Is it comparable to using 手打ち風? Or could it ...
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4 votes
1 answer
423 views

How to understand "きざみ角煮{かくに}"

In today's endeavour to augment my ability to read onigiri labels I came across this in Naha, Okinawa: きざみ角煮 Google Translate does a terrible job: Boiled angle increments WWWJDIC has an entry ...
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4 votes
1 answer
6k views

What's the difference between shokumotsu (食物) and tabemono (食べ物),

They both convey the meaning of "meal" or "food", but I don't know which one I should use. Which ones would be used most of the time for everyday-conversations? Would these two ...
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4 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is マスカット an accurate translation for "green grape", and what foreign word is it derived from?

I'm new to Japanese so I'm working my way through Human Japanese, when I was adding the vocabulary to Quizlet I realized I didn't know how to type マスカット because I'm not used to seeing ツ used like that....
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4 votes
1 answer
255 views

レアチーズケーキ: Does 「レア」 originally come from "rare" or from "layer"?

レアチーズケーキ is a kind of cheesecake which is not baked. What is the etymology of the レア part of this word? Academic references needed, as this is a controversial topic: The top Google result claims it ...
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