11 DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS!
Are you ready for Christmas ?
Today is 13rd December and it is the day of Shogatsugoto-hajime (正月事始め) in Japan. It means to begin preparations for welcoming the New Year.
In the past, it was customary to go to the mountains to pick up the trees needed for the New Year, such as kadomatsu and firewood for cooking ozoni. Also, on this day, there was a custom called Susuharai (煤払い), which is the event to clean the house very carefully to welcome in the god of the New Year. This custom started from the Heian era and in the Edo era, people started to do the year-end cleaning on this day as the Edo castle was said to be cleaned on this day too. It is believed that Susuharai is the older practice of Osoji (大掃除).
Besides the house cleaning, we also start preparing the materials of the traditional New Year dishes. Before that, we prepared a pre-christmas meal by using some traditional Japanese seasonings.
Koji Rice Paste is going well with various kinds of fishes and this time we chose to use salmon. We marinaded the salmon with Kankoji in the fridge overnight. The flavors of salmon became more concentrated and the umami was good too.
Japanese Chicken Teriyaki with Smoked Soy Sauce
It is a very simple sauce that is made up of only a few ingredients including soy sauce, sake, mirin and sugar. This time we have used the smoked soy sauce for this recipe in order to bring out a more nice smoky roasted aroma. The Teriyaki Sauce is made with 1 part soy sauce + 1 part sake + 1 part mirin and about ½ part sugar. You can adjust the sweetness as you like too.
Wanna find more Japanese Seasonings? Check out our store on Amazon and Let’s get ready for the Christmas meal!
Kankoji Rice Paste:
Smoked Soy Sauce: