Matsumotos Corner Vol.30

Osechi - New Year's Foods -

Every country will have foods to celebrate the New Year. The typical one eaten in Japan on New Year’s is Osechi.
The word “Osechi” originates in the meaning of an offering for a milestone day. Nowadays, you can get a magnificent Osechi by pre-ordering it at a department store, supermarket, or convenience store.

Osechi is not a single dish but many foods stuffed into a large box called Jubako. When not eating, the boxes are stacked on top of each other. Each food has a different meaning as new year’s hopes, such as family safety, the prosperity of offspring, a good harvest, and longevity. Many of the foods can be preserved for several days, as they are meant to give the cooking stove gods a rest during the three days of the New Year.

At the end of the year before last, I made Osechi for the first time in my life. I decided at noon on December 30 to go shopping and start cooking, and it took me until 2:00 a.m. on New Year’s Day to finish. I was so tired that I forgot to take a selfie. How did it taste? Don’t ask.