When you go out to eat the delicacies of Japanese cuisine, before ordering the menu, you may require the card. Japanese government creates certification that recommends restaurants around the world as followers of the values of its ancestral cuisine.
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Whether it's chef creativity or ingredient availability, there's nothing more difficult to find in universal cooking than consistency.
So we see recipes made differently as welcome improvisation.
However, this freedom in the ethnic cuisine of traditional peoples, such as Japanese cuisine, especially bothers purists.
It is to guide the most demanding public that the Japanese government's Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries has created a certification that recommends restaurants as followers of “washoku,” the set of values that governs Japanese cuisine.
From the choice of ingredients and seasonings to the preparation and consumption methods, washoku values the seasonality of the food and the qualities of each season.
In 2013, “washoku” was recognized by UNESCO as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
In addition to Japanese cuisine, French, Mexican and Mediterranean cuisine have also received such a title.
At credentialed locations anywhere in the world, you know you'll find the right dishes to eat with your eyes closed.
The concept is like the idea of the acronym DOC (Denomination of Controlled Origin), only applied to food preparation, not to raw materials.
The voluntary certification system aims to help eliminate mistakes commonly made by foreign chefs - from misuse of raw fish, to poor hygiene standards, to the ceremonial manner in which food should be presented to customers.
For example, a common mistake is over-handling the fish, which causes the temperature of the fish to rise.
Another is the incorrect use of kitchen tools such as knives and cutting boards.
Often fish broth (dashi) is cooked too long, which causes it to lose its characteristic flavor.
The requirement aims to ensure that the dining experience is perfect, which ultimately involves maintaining the good image of the Japanese nation.
The concern is more than valid.
There are now more than 89,000 Japanese restaurants operating outside Japan. In the United States alone there are approximately 22,000 of them, capable of launching “novelties” such as burrito-sushi.
As I am a fan of Japanese food, I think the idea is great and I am waiting for the definition of the first accredited establishments to make my visits.