Toshikoshi soba


This is soba which is Japanese buckwheat noodles.

In Japan people eat soba at New Year’s Eve.

It is called Toshikoshi soba.

It is a Japanese custom which started in the Edo era. 
Soba is easier to cut than other noodles. 

So people eat it as meaning to cut out the calamities of the past year. 

They eat it with shrimp tempura, fried bean curd, etc.

I like to eat it with Nishin (cooked herring ). 

This is the Kyoto style for eating soba. 



Oden is one of Japanese traditional dish in winter.

Soup is flavored by soy sauce, etc. 

Ingredients of Oden are daikon radish, boiled egg, chikuwa (a tubular roll of boiled fish paste), konnyaku (Konjac), thick fried tofu, and potato, etc.

This photo is from Sukesan udon restaurant.

But you can find it at many restaurants and even at convenience stores you can buy it.

Also people make it at home.

It was boiled slowly, so flavor sinks in ingredients.

It is delicious, and every winter I become want to eat Oden.

Jyakkoin temple


Now I am in Kyoto to spend New Years time with my family.

Yesterday I went Jyakkoin temple in Ohara. 

This temple is a convent of the Tendai sect.

It was established in 594 by Prince Shotoku to pray for the soul of his father, Emperor Yomei.

On May 2000, it was lit on fire by somebody.

It was sad thing.

But 5 years later the main building and Buddhist image were remade. 

It is a nice temple.



The other day, a foreigner who was visiting Japan was interviewed on TV.

What did you take photos of here in Japan?

The girl was showed a photo of a bathroom in a shopping mall.

I think there are many bathrooms, which are decorated with cute wallpaper, etc.

This is “Toilet for all” at a station near my house.

My husband who is American says it sounds funny. 

Usually toilets in Japan are clean.

Japanese style toilets are tough to use for foreigners and old people.

I hope that all public toilets become western style toilets.