Japanese street food has gained a sizable following through YouTube videos, Japanese media content, and the likes, and for good reason! These are dishes with a unique taste and aesthetic that are enjoyed on the streets and are typically purchased from outdoor stalls or carts. There is an entire culture and etiquette associated with Japanese street food which strongly promotes the idea of sitting down at the place where the dish was purchased to eat it. Not doing so is typically frowned upon. Reasons like this are what make the process of enjoying these meals an entirely distinct experience from anywhere else in the world.
First on our list is the quintessential Japanese street food item: Takoyaki. It is a ball shaped snack, rather sticky in nature, which is made from a wheat flour batter and is filled with tempura, octopus, green onion, and pickled ginger. The icing on the cake (or Takoyaki) is that it is topped with a special Takoyaki sauce that is sweet and savory in nature which adds a kick to the meal.
Ikayaki is another item on our list which has a distinct Japanese appeal. Skewered grilled squid does not sound like the most appealing item to introduce to one’s taste buds, and yet Japanese street food chefs do an excellent job in making a flavorful meal out of the fresh, tender, and chewy squid meat.
Dango is perhaps a more known item here. It refers to skewered rice cakes with a chewy texture that is often covered in different glazes and coatings. It is often enjoyed with green tea and is an item typically found in festivals, though its popularity means that it is widely available on the streets all year long.
Japanese cuisine, and especially its street food, is often lauded as enriching and expansive. There is always something to suit one’s tastes, and so one should never shy away from the stalls and carts on the streets in favor of indoor restaurants!