New Year’s Day for Japanese Americans is a BIG deal. You are supposed to cook for days – lots of different good luck foods – to ensure that everyone who eats them will have a prosperous new year. Yeah but what about the poor sucker who has to make it all?? Er, that’d be me. And yeah, it’s not easy.

My friends and family all love to celebrate Oshogatsu (Japanese New Year’s Day) but no one wants to do it, of course. I enjoy taking on the the task for some reason, and every year I try to outdo the year before and see how many dishes I can make. Maybe I’m trying to hedge my bets with the ‘good luck food’, that this year will be better than last. Next year I’m scaling back, um, honest.

I always make some traditional foods, some party foods, and some just cause they taste good foods – and of course, lots and lots of desserts.

new year's food table sm

So here’s all that I made for New Year’s Day – here’s to hoping for a good 2010.

Honey Shoyu chicken wings
Root Beer pulled pork
O.G.’s flank steak
Shrimp & Bacon salad
Potato Salad
Spam Musubi
Somen Salad (noodles – for a long life)
Tazukuri (teriyaki fish – for a prosperous year)
kuromame (black beans – for health and success)
kurikinton (sweet potato w/chestnuts – for wealth)
gobo (burdock root – for a strong family)
FRESH mochi (the best mochi)
Ozoni (traditional new year’s day soup)
Broken Glass Jello
Pink mochi
Green tea cupcakes w/mascarpone strawberry frosting
Red Velvet cupcakes

front half of the table sm

half the table sm


broken glass jello sm

green tea cupcakes with mascarpone strawberry frosting sm

pink mochi sm

**some photos by foodlibrarian