Seasonings 3

Japanese basic seasonings are sugar, salt, vinegar, soy sauce, and miso. 


Today, I talk about basic seasonings in Japan.
It must be useful for those who want to know Japanese cuisine well.



We use mainly “Johaku-tou” for Japanese cooking. This sugar is often said “custard sugar”, “superfine sugar” and so on…But I think these are different from any other sugar.

Johaku-tou is finer and more moist than granulated sugar.

It is said that the reason why we use custard sugar instead of granulated sugar is related to the humidity climate.

We do not use granulated sugar for cooking. Because, these sugar is too sweet for us.


Although there are many types of salt overseas, as for sugar, Japan has the most kinds of one in the world.

I will talk about sugar on Sugar page.



The kinds of Salt is sea salt only in Japan.
Salt has effect of tightened taste depends on the grain or land. It is more bitter than one overseas.

The interesting thing is that sea salt is used as a charm against evil influence in Japan. This is a similar white sage herb in western country.

Before beginning Sumo wrestling, Sumo wrestlers scatter salt to clean the place.
Because, Sumo is a one of Shinto ritual not entertainment.

I would like to Japanese salt on another page also.



Actually, there are many kinds of vinegar as well as sugar, but they are not exported overseas.

Japanese often drinks vinegar instead of lemon juice.


Japanese assumes that drinking vinegar makes their body softer. Is that true?!

Soy sauce


I cannot talk about Japanese cuisine without soy sauce. The taste of soy sauce has strong and light.

Light soy sauce has a stronger saltiness than thick colour. So we often use for stewed dishes.

Strong one is often used in home cooking.



Miso is a traditional seasoning in the form of a paste, with a smooth to chunky texture. It is made by fermented soy beans boiled with salt and malts.

I already introduce on Seasoning 2.



We often add sake to simmer dish like wine.  Sake makes the taste be stronger. It is also added to fish dishes to mask the smell of the fish.



Mirin is sweet sake condiment. It is made from steamed glutinous rice.

We often use this for Teriyaki. Because, this seasoning has glaze and the broth adds elegant flavor.

Today I introduced 7 basic seasonings that Japanese have at home…To be honest, Mirin can be substituted for Sake and sugar, so it may not be at home.

Enjoy Japanese cooking at home!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: