Japanese cuisine is the food—ingredients, preparation and way of eating—of Japan. The traditional food of Japan is based on rice with miso soup and other dishes, each in its own utensil, with an emphasis on seasonal ingredients. The side dishes often consist of fish, pickled vegetables, and vegetables cooked in broth. Fish is common in the traditional cuisine. It is often grilled, but it may also be served raw as sashimi or in sushi. Seafood and vegetables are also deep-fried in a light batter as tempura.
Apart from rice, staples include noodles, such as soba and udon. Japan has many simmered dishes such as fish products in broth called oden, or beef in sukiyaki and nikujaga. Foreign food, in particular Chinese food in the form of noodles in soup called ramen and fried dumplings, gyoza, and western food such as curry and hamburger steaks are commonly found in Japan. Historically, the Japanese shunned meat, but with the modernization of Japan in the 1860s, meat-based dishes such as tonkatsu became common.
Noodles are a staple part of Japanese cuisine. They are often served chilled with dipping sauces, or in soups or hot dishes.
Ramen are thin, wheat-based noodles made from wheat flour, salt, water, and kansui, a form of alkaline water. The dough is risen before being rolled. They were imported from China during the Meiji Period. Ramen noodles have a firm texture and are usually pale yellow in color. The noodles may vary in shape, width, and length. They are served in a broth. Examples of ramen dishes are miso ramen, shio ramen, tonkotsu ramen, and shoyu ramen.
Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals. The substance is ingested by an organism and assimilated by the organism's cells in an effort to produce energy, maintain life, or stimulate growth.
Historically, people secured food through two methods: hunting and gathering, and agriculture. Today, most of the food energy consumed by the world population is supplied by the food industry.