Top 10 Foods in Nagoya

1. Hitsumabushi (ひつまぶし)

This ritual Nagoya eel dish, Hitsumabushi, and are slit open along the belly and grilled without steaming. Hitsumabushi is told to be originated during the end of Meiji Era and the unique way of eating Hitsumabushi have soon caught many attentions. The dish itself is divided into three portions, which you first set the eel portion into the rice bowl and enjoy. Next, putting the condiments in the bowl to enjoy another sense of taste (wasabi, “nori” dried laver, mitsuba, etc.) Then the third portion comes in, by pouring green tea over the dish, in a style like o-chazuke soup with rice.

2. Miso-Katsu (味噌カツ)

There are many types of Miso in Japan and in Nagoya, they use a dark-colored type made from soybeans, which aka-miso (red bean paste) are made into a thick sauce by adding broth and seasonings. This Nagoya miso is poured over pork cutlet, which this is called Miso Katsu. This Miso-Katsu is often served in Lunch menus.

3. Kishi-men (きしめん)

Kishi-men are a thick and flat noodle, which are often used in the Nagoya area. The origin of the name of the noodle, Kishi-men, is unknown however it is told that this name came from a game piece of a Chinese chess game. There is a theory that the shape of the noodle was made by coiling the noodle on one of the game pieces of the chess game. Another theory is that people in Kishu (present Wakayama Prefecture) originally made the noodle, which was later on called kishu-men (Kishu noodle) and then evolved to kishi-men. Also, another theory that it was originally called kijimen because the noodle contained the name kiji (pheasant), used as an ingredient when it was presented to the domain lord.

4. Ten-Musubi (天むすび)

Ten-Musubi is a rice ball with shrimp tempura inside, which is a ritual food from Nagoya. This rice ball is little smaller than the regular rice ball and is not seasoned with anything but the natural saltiness of the shrimp and nori (dried laver). Many restaurants in Nagoya serve this rice ball, and the shape and taste have remained almost unchanged since it was first developed.

5. Dote-ni/ Dote-meshi (どて煮・どて飯)

Dote-ni has been adapting in Nagoya for long, where the name Dote-ni originated from making a dote (embankments) on the edge of a pot using premium Hatcho miso, adding water, and letting it simmer. A different variation of ingredients can be added, such as daikon radish, beef sinew, giblets, egg, and etc.

Dote-ni can be enjoyed with sake or have rice added to make “dote-meshi”. Dote-meshi have also become very popular and now, Dote-meshi and Dote-ni also became a popular standard at pubs and households in Nagoya.

6. Ui-rou (ういろう)

Ui-rou (are also called Uiro) is traditional Japanese sweets, which are not too sweet in taste, however, the mochi-like feeling and the taste soon adapted in many places in Japan. Nagoya Ui-rou is very famous in Japan, which most of the time, uses sugar cane sugar. Ui-rou can come in many different colors.

7. Tebasaki (手羽先)

Tebasaki is deep-fried chicken wingtips, which are spicy flavored, usually enjoyed as an appetizer with beer or Japanese sake. Tebasaki uses only the two wing tips, since the traditionally, breast, thigh, and sasami (breast tenderloin) have been popular portions of chicken, while drumsticks and wingtips did not have much use. In the Nagoya style, the wingtips are seasoned beforehand and then fried without batter. The wingtips are fried and are basted with sauce on both sides while being turned, seasoned with salt and pepper, and coated with white sesame seeds.

8. Curry Udon (カレーうどん)

Curry Udon is a curry roux, which is mixed with chicken broth and Japanese soup stock and is poured over udon noodles. Not only spicy but also flavored with Japanese soup stock and chicken stock, the udon dish tastes well-balanced and delicious. Several kinds of curry pastes are mixed in an original recipe with red pepper, black pepper, and secret seasoning to add a sweet touch. The roux is sticky even though no starch is added.

This special kind of noodle is often enjoyed in the Kansai (western side region) of Japan.

9. Nagoya Couchin (名古屋こーちん)

Nagoya Cochin is branded as a chicken breed that is good for both eggs and meat, which lays many eggs and where the meat to be rich in taste. This special chicken has become a national premier food brand. During the Meji Era, there was a variety of chicken brought from China to Nagoya, and the native Japanese breed has made a new breed. The reddish meat was rich in flavor, has good chewing texture, and can be cooked in a variety of ways -sukiyaki-style chicken called hikizuri, hotpot, broiled with salt, fried with seafood, marbled, blanched and seasoned with wasabi, among others. This chicken is served in special occasion, or when guests visit, so the Nagoya Cochin is a special treat even for Nagoya people.

10. Miso-Nikomi Udon (味噌煮込みうどん)

Miso-Nikomi Udon is a noodle in Miso Broth, which is told that it has originated in the Yamanashi Prefecture. During War, the warlord Takeda Shingen brought the food to the Tokugawa Family, where the base of the clear based soup was made by stock of dried bonito, mushroom, kelp, and other ingredients. The soup was seasoned with thick soy source and sweet sake. After the food has adapted to Nagoya, Nagoya used miso called the haccho-miso, the salty red miso paste made only from beans without using koji rice malt and put ingredients include chicken, egg, green onion, mushroom, and mochi rice cake. This food has soon become one of the popular foods in Nagoya.