Japanese Food

Natto!!!  The famous food ALL gaijin hate.  It looks like the chef spit on some beans, and smells like a brewery.  It's actually fermented beans.

Squid grilled at a festival foodstall.

Grilled fish on a stick in Ueno park.  You eat the WHOLE fish, bones and all.

Fruit in candy on ice (similar to a candied apple).

Cold sake and some pickled vegetables.

Baby fish served raw.  VERY salty, and the eyes are a bit hard and unpleasant.

WHALE!!!  Tastes like bacon. I wouldn't have supported such a bad national policy, but it was going to be thrown away.

Tofu served Korean style at Yuko's restaurant.

Sashimi (raw fish like sushi, but without the rice)

Very nice hot soba (wheat noodles) tempura (lightly battered fried veggies).

Sashimi with a nice presentation.

You've heard about them, but here's proof.  The famous $100 melons!!  These are meant as gifts, and not for oneself.  They are probably not THAT much better than the normal $5 melons (available at grocery stores), but this has more prestige... I think.

Manju - Bun with red bean in the middle.  Always served at onsen towns because the volcanic water creates free steam for cooking.

Typical counter at ramen shop.  My sho-chu (my favorite local spirit), chopsticks, soy, oil, vinegar, and a mobile phone.

Yakisoba is a noodle with nice brown sauce that is then fried and garnished with ginger.  It is found at ANY festival.  Maybe the closest thing to it is lo-mein Chinese noodles (which do not exsist in China btw).

Ojisanyakki... don't know the name of this stuff so I call it "uncles mixed food" (ojisan-yakki) because it's always some uncle making it and it's truly just a mix of vegetables held together by cooked egg.

Takoyakki - batter balls filled with octopus and cooked.  Covered with a little ginger and dried fish shavings.  Served in the fall.

More squid being grilled on a stick at some festival.

Corn.  And even though it is street stall food the Japanese sense of cleanliness demands each one be wrapped in it's own bag... the same way you buy corn at the grocery store!!

Chokobanana... you'll never guess...  yes!  Chocolate covered bananas for $3.

Okanamiyakki - this is fun to get at a restaurant because you're sitting there with your friends at a grill, and you make it all yourself.  It's way too messy to get as street food.  Basically similar to ojisanyakki, but much bigger, and you can't hold it.  Lots of vegetables and egg.  Think ENORMOUS omelet without as much egg, and much more filling.