• Japanese Good Luck Charms: Maneki Neko

    Maneki Neko—sometimes called Fortune Cat—is a staple in many Japanese restaurants and stores. Maneki Neko is supposed to bring good luck to its owners, which is the reason for its popularity. The waving cat is often found by cash registers in order to attract fortune.

    Maneki Neko literally means beckoning cat in Japanese. In English, in addition to Fortune Cat, it is sometimes called Welcoming Cat, Lucky Cat, and Money Cat. If the cat’s left paw is raised, Maneki Neko is said to attract customers. If the right paw is raised, it is said to attract money. Sometimes, both paws are raised, which is said to attract money and customers and to offer protection. The colors on the Maneki Neko also have special meanings. For example, red is for success in love and green is for good health.

    If you love Japanese culture, why not enjoy some Japanese food at House of Genji? We offer teppanyaki, hibachi, and much more at our Japanese restaurant in San Jose. For more information, call us at (408) 453-8120.

  • A Look at Craft Whiskey Culture in Japan

    When most people think of craft whiskey, they think of Scotland, but Japan has a thriving scene of whiskey distilleries. In fact, a Japanese brand of scotch has recently been named the best in the world, beating out Scottish single malts for the first time.

    Watch this video to learn more about craft whiskey culture in Japan. Although they are tight-lipped about their secrets, they credit the clean water of Japan as one of their secret ingredients.

    Indulge in more Japanese specialties with a meal at House of Genji. Our Japanese restaurant serves up teppanyaki fare and a variety of other Japanese foods, with something for every palate. Learn more about Japanese dining in San Jose by calling (408) 453-8120.


  • How It’s Made: Miso Soup

    Miso soup is a staple on the menu of nearly every Japanese restaurant. The simple soup packs a lot of flavor and plenty of health benefits. The original version of miso soup was traditionally eaten with rice, but today, when you order it in a Japanese restaurant, you usually just get the broth with pieces of tofu and seaweed in it. What is exactly is miso soup, and how is it made? Here is what you need to know.

    Miso Soup Ingredients

    Although other ingredients are sometimes added, miso soup at its core contains only two ingredients: dashi and miso paste. Dashi is a Japanese soup broth that is made from anchovy, kelo, and bonito flakes. Dashi is used frequently in Japanese dishes, and if you’ve eaten at Japanese restaurants, there is a good chance that you’ve smelled its distinctive aroma in the air. Miso paste is made from fermented soybeans, and frequently, salt. The miso paste doesn’t dissolve in the broth completely, and it gives miso soup its recognizable cloudy appearance. In addition to these ingredients, there are many different twists on miso soup recipes. Families tend to have their own preferences that include everything from adding radishes to adding potatoes to the mix.

    Making Miso Soup

    For a simple miso soup, the dashi and miso paste are heated together gently until it is time to serve. It’s important for the soup to never boil, which will cause the flavor of the miso to break down. After the two are combined, salt may be added. At this point, the addition of other ingredients, like tofu and seaweed, can occur. Miso paste comes in a variety of colors, and the darker the color, the stronger the flavor. This is an important consideration when preparing the soup.

    Let House of Genji do the work for you, and stop by our restaurant for a steaming cup of miso soup plus a delicious teppanyaki meal. Contact us today to find out more about our menu of Japanese food in San Jose by dialing (408) 453-8120.