Tsumami Snack



Snacks (tsumami, o-tsumami, otsumami)

***** Location: Japan
***** Season: Topic
***** Category: Humanity


tsumamimono つまみ物, 摘まみ物, つまみ, おつまみ
entree, o-tsukidashi, 突き出し, o-tooshi お通し, oodoburu オードブル

CLICK for more photos A little snack to go with a beer or rice wine ...
at home a light dish prepared by mother, often just opening a bag full of something, from potato chips to some special chinmi, dried fish preparations. It can either be cold or freshly cooked food.

Tsumami is something you nibble inbetween sips of alcohol, it is the MA 間whilst drinking. It also prevents one to get drunk too fast. Most tsumami are salty, which in turn makes you thursty to have another drink.

At bars, bits of cheese are often served as tsumami.

Chinmi, special delicasies

TSUMAMU, つまむ(摘む/撮む/抓む) is a verb meaning to pick up something between your fingertips, like a pinch of salt.

O-Tsumami is a light snack, picked up with your fingers or with the chopsticks. Sometimes it is served as hors d'oeuvres, but it can also be just a single dish with a drink.

Tsumamigui つまみ食い means eating with your fingers, mostly before a meal or during the preparation of food.

Edamame, green soybeans snack, is a favorite amongst these fresh Autumn tsumami. And peanuts are rather common too.

Dry food as tsumami, kawakimono 乾き物(かわきもの)

In some restaurants in Kyoto you get a little tsumami sweet when ordering coffee.

Shukoo 酒肴(しゅこう)is another expression.
肴 is read sakana. The origin of this word is "rice wine and vegetables" 酒菜



Sakana (肴) or shukō (酒肴) is a Japanese term referring to food eaten as an accompaniment to alcohol.

The dishes may be similar in size to Spanish tapas and or they may be something a lot more substantial.
Sakana may also be referred to as otsumami; this term usually applies to smaller dishes.

Because fish, especially dried fish, was a popular choice for these dishes, over the years the term sakana also became the pronunciation for the kanji for fish (魚).

Types of sakana
In Japan, whenever alcohol is consumed, it is customary that the drinks are always accompanied with some sort of foodstuff. The term sakana traditionally refer to food served to accompany sake. These are usually quite salty and served in relatively small portions. However, since the 19th Century, Japanese beer has overtaken sake as the nation's most popular alcoholic beverage, and at the same time various foods designed to accompany beer have become popular. These dishes, served in restaurant-pubs known as izakaya, are usually more substantial than tapas although they are not considered a meal as such as they do not contain the all-important rice. Traditionally, the Japanese regarded sake, which is made from rice, as a substitute for white rice served in a standard Japanese meal, and as a result many Japanese do not eat rice and drink alcohol simultaneously.

Listed below are some common sakana.

Yakitori - grilled skewers of chicken and chicken parts
Kushiyaki - grilled skewers of meat or vegetables
Sashimi - slices of raw fish
Tsukemono - pickles
Kimchi - spicy Korean pickles
Sakana especially popular with beer:
Edamame - salted and steamed soybean pods
Sakana especially popular with sake:
Shiokara - fermented, salted squid innards etc.
Uni - Sea Urchin roe
Ikura - salmon roe, salmon eggs
Mentaiko - spicy pollock roe
Tarako - pollock roe
Small snacks
Ika Ichiya-boshi - Dried squid
Ei-hire - dried skate
Arare - crackers made primarily from rice flour with other ingredients
Tatami Iwashi - small dried sardines pressed into a cracker-like square form
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


Shio kazunoko, 塩数の子 (しおかずのこ)
salted herring roe

This is a different preparation from those eaten in winter.
The salt is taken off by keepin in fresh water for a while, then sliced into small pieces and topped with katsuobushi and soy sauce. It is a favorite tsumami side dish in summer.

Worldwide use

Kleinigkeit zu Essen; Horsd’œuvre, Knabberzeug, Häppchen zu alkoholischen Getränken

Things found on the way


noppejiru samete mo sake no sakana nari

noppejiru soup -
even when cold it tastes
with my rice wine

source :  www7.ocn.ne.jp
Tr. Gabi Greve

肴, this character reads sakana, but here refers to a tsumami snack with a drink.

WASHOKU : Noppejiru

Related words

Uni 海胆 (うに) sea urchin and sea urchin roe (uni 雲丹)

***** WASHOKU : General Information


No comments: