This pork dish was really a hit. I cooked two hours, and then I sautéed them with sweet sauce. My husband loved it. However something is wrong in this photo above. Can you see it?
A few days ago I got e-mail from my Japanese male friend. He was saying that he couldn’t stand seeing that photo. He said,
Did you forget Japanese spirits? Do you really like cooking? You love cooking, but don’t mind a proper plating?
I could feel how upset he was. We are good friends from university, so he didn’t mean he offended me. He always teaches me things I don’t know. I like it.
I was thinking for a while, looking at this photo. He was mentioning something about plates. He said it was opposite. The plate is white, so there is no pattern or a figure. How could it be opposite then?
He meant I put pork opposite.
As you can see in the photo above , we should put any slices (fish or meat or anything!) as HIDARI OMOTE, left side up to pick up easily with chopsticks (for right-handed). We also traditionally believe HIDARI (left) is good.
For example, we plate a whole fish a head left. Especially for a festive occasion, we definitely have to put head left.
That is why my plating was wrong. More over I could put garnish at wrong corner. As for garnish, I had to put it on the right corner.
Japanese food is famous for beautiful plating, and it has a rule like cutlery setting in French.
For example, miso soup and rice should be set in front of the dishes, miso soup at the right and rice at the left. This is very basic.
Also we should plate foods by odd numbers. We think odds numbers are good (Yang-as in Yin/Yang).
Each food culture is so unique. What is thought to be good for one culture can be unacceptable in other culture. Think about slurping Ramen!
There are still tons of rules for Japanese food, and I will write about them sometimes in future posts.
By the way the pork in the first photo and the photo above are so good, so I will write about them next!
I was so glad that I put pork and snap peas in odd numbers……
Good job, me!