Land of Youthfulness
What is an autumn meal like at a Japanese table? When the maple tree leaves are turning red, the wild geese are coming back and the dry, fresh air is sweeping away the nostalgia of summer.
Chestnuts and mushrooms mingle with the warm flavors of sweet potatoes. Lotus roots crunch between the teeth. The reflection of the burgundy lacquered plate is bright, the hot tea invigorates, and the steam of the rice intoxicates. The Japanese do not focus their emotion on a single dish but on the harmony of the moment. Japanese cuisine is enjoyed with all the senses.
A land of youthfulness, at the top of the world's longevity rankings, Japan rhymes beauty with healthy diet. The Japanese have built a balanced meal around rice, the founding grain, punctuated by the waltz of the seasons. They call it "ichiju sansai": three small dishes: fish or meat, vegetables flanked by misoshiru and vegetables in brine, and other fermented food.
Itadakimasu! Before we begin, a gratitude. Let's join hands to celebrate the ingredients and the bountiful earth. Let's immerse ourselves in the painting with the soft touch of the chopsticks. Let's take the time to savor the fruits of autumn at our own pace.