Japanese Kare Raisu
Japanese Kare Raisu is a beloved dish all over the country, and is considered a comfort food. Curry was introduced to Japan by British officers and merchants during the Meiji Era, around the 1800s.
“The Japanese military wanted to encourage meat consumption as a way of building up the strength of Japanese youth, and curry with rice was an ideal way to incorporate vegetables, rice and meat into one inexpensive yet substantial meal.”
Kare Raisu has long been a staple food amongst hungry students, alongside cup ramen noodles. Curry packs were also introduced to the NASA space program by Japanese astronaut Mamoru Mohri in 1997. It is popular as an emergency food, because the packs don’t need to be refrigerated or heated to be tasty.
The taste of curry is sweet and not very spicy when compared with versions in other countries. In Japan there are many varieties, reaching from Hokkaido all the way down to the islands of Okinawa.
Below is a list of must-try curry dishes:
1. Natto curry – Mito, Ibaraki
Ibaraki is well-known for producing Natto. Natto is a fermented soybean that has a sticky texture and a strong smell. It is well known for its health benefits. This dish is perfect for courageous people who like discovering new tastes.
2. Shika deer curry from Hokkaido
Hokkaido has a high population of shika deer; this famous curry dish is a great example of chefs using their local natural resources and ingredients.
3. Tottori pear curry
You’ll be surprised that pears are added to this curry dish.Tottori is famous for Nashi pears and they are widely used in their cuisine. This new recipe was introduced by a pear farm in Tottori. This dish is perfectly suited to people with a sweet tooth.
4. Okinawa Goya curry
Have you ever heard of the bitter melon of Okinawa? It’s a green and oblong vegetable known as Goya. Whilst Goya Chanpurū is one of the most representative dishes from Okinawa, we can also find this ingredient in curry. The Goya curry also features pineapple and brown sugar – both very famous products of Okinawa.
5. Hiroshima oyster curry pan
Hiroshima is well known for its oysters. In Miyajima (a town located in Hiroshima prefecture) you will find the famous Kaki Karēpan; a deep-fried curry bread, stuffed with curry roux and oysters.