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What Exactly Is Sake?

If you’ve ever dined in a Japanese restaurant, then you may have noticed a beverage called sake on the menu. Sake is an alcoholic drink that holds an esteemed place in Japanese culture. Watch this video to learn more about sake.

Sake is made from rice and in the same way as beer, but it is served and enjoyed like wine. The rice grains are polished before being used to make sake, and the various levels of rice polishing result in different types and qualities of the beverage. Traditionally, another person should pour sake for you, and it can be considered impolite to serve this drink to yourself.

At our Japanese restaurant serving San Jose, House of Genji offers teppanyaki dining and features a cocktail lounge. To find out more or to make a reservation, please call (408) 453-8120.

Ways That Rice Is Used in Japanese Cuisine

If you enjoy dining at Japanese restaurants, then you may realize how significant rice is as an ingredient in Japanese cuisine. Continue reading to learn just a few of the ways that rice is used in Japan.

Sashimi

If you’re like many people, then you’re already familiar with sushi. Sashimi is sometimes confused with sushi, which is always served with rice and may or may not include fish or meat. Sashimi, on the other hand, is a dish of thinly sliced and bite-sized raw fish or meat, and it is typically enjoyed with wasabi paste and soy sauce.

Onigiri

Arguably the most common and beloved way to enjoy rice in Japan, onigiri is a kind of rice ball. First, rice is steamed and then seasoned, often with seaweed, salt, and vinegar. Then, it can be prepared in a variety of ways. Typically, the rice is pressed into a round or triangular shape and may then be topped with ingredients like tuna and mayonnaise, pickled vegetables, or red beans. Then, it is wrapped in a piece of seaweed for easy eating.

Sake

Brewed from rice and enjoyed like wine, sake is an alcoholic beverage that is popular and historically significant in Japan. There are many types of sake, and they can vary in quality, cost, and taste.

Mochi

Mochi is cake made from rice that is pounded into a paste. Mochi can be enjoyed in many ways, for example, boiled and served with soy sauce and sugar or baked and topped with sweetened red beans. You can also find premade dessert products that are balls of ice cream wrapped in sweetened and flavored mochi. Zoni, which is a traditional Japanese soup served on New Year’s Day, features mochi as the main ingredient and might also be made with vegetables, meat, and seafood.

At House of Genji, we specialize in serving delicious teppanyaki and authentic Japanese food. If you’d like to make a reservation at our Japanese steakhouse serving San Jose, then please call (408) 453-8120.

The Celebration of Golden Week in Japan

During Golden Week, everything from Japanese restaurants and accommodations to trains and sightseeing spots become crowded with tourists. The reason for this is that the Golden Week is a collection of 4 national holidays, and it is one of Japan’s 3 busiest holiday seasons. Continue reading to learn about Golden Week celebrations in Japan.

Showa Day: April 29

Showa Day (Showa no Hi) celebrates the birthday of former Emperor Showa, who passed away in 1989. Up until 2006, another Golden Week holiday, Greenery Day, was celebrated on April 29.

Constitution Day: May 3

Constitution Day (Kenpo Kinenbi) is a patriotic holiday that commemorates the enactment of the post-war Japanese constitution, which took place in 1947. Citizens of the country hold the Japanese constitution as a point of pride. For many, this constitution is most well-known for Article 9, which prohibits Japan from participating in war activities, unless it is in self-defense.

Greenery Day: May 4

Formerly celebrated on Showa Day, which is on April 29 and marks the birthday of former Emperor Showa, Greenery Day (Midori no Hi) is a holiday that is dedicated to nature and the environment. This is because Emperor Showa loved plants and the outdoors. Interestingly, May 4 was already considered a national holiday because, by law, a day that falls in between 2 national holidays is declared and celebrated as a national holiday, as well.

Children’s Day: May 5

The final holiday of the Golden Week is Children's Day (Kodomo no Hi). On this day, families pray for the future success and health of their sons by celebrating the Boy's Festival (Tango no Sekku) and displaying samurai dolls and carp streamers, which symbolize success, power, and strength. On May 3, the Girl’s Festival is celebrated.

If you’d like to try authentic Japanese dining and teppanyaki in San Jose, then come and see us at House of Genji. To make your reservation at our Japanese steakhouse, please call (408) 453-8120.

How Is Tofu Made?

Tofu is a staple in every Japanese restaurant and a component of many traditional meals of Japan. If you enjoy Japanese food and tofu, then you may have found yourself wondering how this versatile ingredient is made.

Tofu can be cooked in many ways and is rich in iron, calcium, and amino acids. Also referred to as bean curd, tofu is derived from soybeans and is made by curdling fresh soy milk. The liquid is allowed to solidify into a block and is then cooled, similar to the way in which dairy cheese is traditionally made. Then, the remaining liquid is discarded, and the curds are pressed together. Tofu originated in China and is a staple in Chinese, Thai, and Japanese cuisine.

Are you looking for delicious Japanese dining in San Jose? If so, then come and see us at House of Genji. Please call (408) 453-8120 to make your reservation.

Get a Look at How Sake Is Created

If you have never ordered sake when dining at a Japanese restaurant, then consider giving this beverage a try. Made primarily from rice, this traditional Japanese wine comes in many varieties and offers unique and delicious flavors. Watch this video to get a glimpse of how sake is made.

First, the rice is milled to remove lipids and proteins from the outside of the grain. Then, the grains are washed and soaked in cold, filtered water. Next, the rice is drained and poured into a steamer where it is cooked under pressure for approximately an hour. Finally, the rice is fermented along with water and yeast. After several weeks, the sake is filtered out and aged.

House of Genji Japanese Steakhouse features a cocktail lounge and offers fantastic Japanese food in San Jose. To find out more or make a reservation, please call (408) 453-8120.

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