Vietnam - Japan cultural exchange in Hoi An
(QNO) - In the age of red-seal ships, Hoi An witnessed an interference of culture between Vietnam and Japan.
Washoku, Japanese food was recognised as a UNESCO intangible cultural heritage in 2013.
It manifests both the Japanese essence of cuisine and the cuisine interference between Japan and other cultures, including China, Korea, and western cultures.
Japan was inherently a country of wet rice agricultural civilisation; so rice is the crucial ingredient in a Japanese meal.
When Buddhism immigrated into Japan, a lot of food prepared for vegetarians led to the movement of sauces made from vegetables.
The regulations of Japanese cuisine used to be under three forms: Honzen for main meals, Kaiseki for parties, and Cha-Kaiseki for tea parties. Each of them had its own criteria and decoration. However, they are not maintained till now.
Today’s Japanese cuisine is an interference between different cultures.
Japanese cuisine focuses on human health. It is always healthy and helps raise human longevity based on the three- five regulations: five flavours (salt, sour, sweet, bitter, and acrid), five colours (white, yellow, red, green, and black), and five methods of cooking: Nama (cutting), Niru (simmering), Yaku (grilling), Musu (steaming) and Ageru (deep-frying).
So, a human being should use five senses to enjoy Japanese foods.
In the early 17th century, around 300 Japanese people lived in Hoi An; so there was a cuisine exchange between Vietnamese and Japanese communities there.
Cao Lau, which has some similarities to Udon, may be an example for the cuisine exchange.
Besides, Both the Vietnamese and the Japanese share the same theory of cuisine: yin-yang and five elements.
In particular, the food habits are the same between the Hoianians and the Japanese.
They use chicken instead of duck during the Lunar New Year festival. Fish bones should be removed without turning the fish over. Fishermen do not eat houndfish. Anh patients are forbidden to enjoy duck eggs.