Food Culture in the Meiji Era: Japanese & Western Harmony

February 1, 2005
past event image
Lecture past event

Tuesday, February 1
6:30 pm

On a mission to open trade relations with Japan, U.S. Navy Commodore Matthew Perry made his now famous trans-Pacific voyage in 1853. His visit opened Japan to the West after nearly 300 years of national isolation, and in the Meiji era an enduring culinary fusion tradition was born. The Japanese began to incorporate Western foods such as meat and bread into their diet, and created their own recipes, preparing these foreign staples with soy sauce, miso and other familiar ingredients. Tonkatsu (deep-fried breaded pork), curry rice and omu-rice (omelet rice) are a few examples of the harmonious fusion foods to emerge during this era. Participants include Noriko Yanagihara, Japanese food specialist focusing on the preservation of Japanese culinary tradition and Dr. Katarzyna Cwiertka of Leiden University’s Centre for Japanese and Korean Studies (the Netherlands). Moderated by Elizabeth Andoh, lecturer and writer specializing in Japanese foodways and cultural affairs.

Followed by a reception and tasting.

Tickets: $20; Japan Society members & seniors $17; students $15. 

  • Tuesday, February 1, 2005
  • 6:30 pm