Oh Japan. The place where I discovered the importance of Google Maps and my love for all food that happens to be green.
I’m not quite sure why I decided to write this post today, but I think I just enjoy perving at pictures of things that I’ve previously eaten. That green tea ice cream pic was actually the background on my phone for a while.
I wish I was joking.
Anyway, if you’re vegetarian, I hope you’ll find this post somewhat interesting, and if you’re off to Japan soon then you should definitely add some of these dishes to your ‘to eat’ list.
Everyone has one of those, right?
Firstly, if you go to Japan, you must try Okonomiyake.
Those are the rules. Sorry.
It’s like an omelette/pancake/pizza type thing with sauce on top. It’s hard to describe, but trust me when I say that it’s truly delicious. I had mine in the Pontocho area of Gion.
Usually they’re meat-based, but most places will whip you up a veggie one if you ask.
It’s the same with Ramen. If you take a little flashcard with you for translation purposes, most places will make you a veggie/vegan/gluten free version if they can.
I found this beauty somewhere in Asakusa and it was my favourite ramen experience by far. It was filled with onion, radish, tofu, greens, wasabi and of course, plenty of noodles.
Speaking of noodles, I stumbled across the green tea variety with spring onion and tofu at the Obubu Green Tea plantation near Kyoto (read all about it here) and not only did they look good, but they tasted amazing too.
OK, more green stuff.
I won’t lie, I ate green tea ice cream pretty much every day while I was in Japan. They seem to sell it everywhere. It doesn’t taste like normal green tea, it’s more like matcha, if you’ve ever had that.
Right, before you say anything that is NOT a bogey.
I repeat, NOT a bogey.
This is actually a deep fried green tea flavoured bun with a sweet soy bean paste in the middle. It may look gross, but I promise you it’s not. It’s one of my favourite street snacks and I picked this one up at a food stall outside the Sensoji Temple in Tokyo.
Onto another Japanese street snack in the form of an ice cold cucumber on a stick.
(Stay with me please)
Yes, it’s a bit strange, but oddly refreshing on a boiling hot day, and pretty healthy. The lovely cucumber man even sprinkled a little bit of salt on the top which gave it some extra flavour.
I found my little guy somewhere in Kyoto’s Ninenzaka when I was wandering around in a sweaty mess.
OK, so I didn’t eat this beautiful bear-themed dish in the end (I think there’s meat hiding somewhere under that omelette duvet), but how cute is it?
If you’re interested, it’s on the menu at the Maidreamin’ maid cafe in Akihabara, Tokyo. I wrote a little bit about it here, but in a nutshell, weirdest hour of my life.
After much deliberation, I opted for the cat cake. Obviously.
This isn’t even the best sushi I had, but thought I’d include it anyway.
As a vegetarian, you’ll obviously be slightly limited when it comes to sushi, but a good old cucumber or tofu roll is fine by me and very easy to come by. I didn’t eat bad sushi once in Japan, even the 7/11 takeout ones are nice and great if you’re in a hurry.
So, there you have it.