How to eat Shizuoka Oden | 5 Characteristics of this Traditionally Loved Local Gourmet
Shizuoka oden is a black soup! Many people are often surprised to see ingredients on skewers floating in the black soup. We took an adventure to Odenya Obachan, a restaurant recognized as a “Shizuoka Gourmet Heritage to be Preserved for the Future”. We wanted to ask about the best way to enjoy Shizuoka oden.
Table of Contents
- 1 Shizuoka Oden’s purpose
- 2 Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #1: Black Hanpen
- 3 Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #2: Black Soup
- 4 Five Apsects of Shizuoka Oden #3: On the Skewer!
- 5 Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #4: Sprinkle with Green Laver and Dashi Powder
- 6 Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #5: Featured in a Japanese Candy Shop
- 7 Here’s what to order! Introducing the standard ingredients
Shizuoka Oden’s purpose
Shizuoka oden is one of the locals’ favorite foods. It is said to be a perfect snack, side dish to rice, or with alcohol. There are five rules of Shizuoka oden, lets take a look at them.
Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #1: Black Hanpen
Shizuoka oden includes black hanpen, also known as fish cakes. The reason for the color is the whole fish, including skin and bones, are kneaded in. The black hanpen is combine with sardines and mackerel caught in Yaizu Port. Unlike white hanpen, black is chewy and has texture similar to satsuma-age fish cakes.
Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #2: Black Soup
This black soup is made by boiling dark soy sauce and beef tendon. It isn’t common to drink the soup, but acts more as a marinade to the ingredients to take out of the soup.
Its darker than expected. The dark color comes not only from the two main ingredients, but also due to it being simmered, adding more and more broth. When I tried drinking it, and I found it wasn’t as thick as I thought, but rather light with deep flavor that was infused with the sweet fish paste as more broth was being added.
Five Apsects of Shizuoka Oden #3: On the Skewer!
This is another unique feature of Shizuoka oden. Previously, people used to order their favorite ingredients to cook in an oden pot, and when finished, would pay by the number of skewers they ate.
Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #4: Sprinkle with Green Laver and Dashi Powder
Dashi powder is shavings of mackerel, sardines, and other fish. It can vary by restaurant, and may be mixed with green laver as well.
It is the Shizuoka style to cover the entire service of the food with dashi powder.
And don’t forget a cold beer. It is an excellent compliment to the hot Shizuoka Oden. It is quite addictive.
Five Aspects of Shizuoka Oden #5: Featured in a Japanese Candy Shop
In Shizuoka Prefecture, a local candy shop would have a standard practice to have Shizuoka oden available at his store. The clerk would often make it for a dinner side dish, and would sell it to incoming customers.
Odenya Obachan is located in Sumpu Castle Park, and is visited by all walks of life, making us realize how much Shizuoka Oden is loved by the community.
Here’s what to order! Introducing the standard ingredients
They have a number system menu, so anyone can easily order. We appreciated the thoughtfulness.
Here are the 5 skewers you should try when eating the special oden.
From left to right: Shinodamaki, beef sinew, sankaku, black hanpen, fuwa
Shinodamaki しのだ巻き Shinodamaki
It is a paste wrapped in fried bean curd. Enjoy the gap between the plump texture of the fish paste, and sizzling fried bean curd overflowing with broth.
Beef Sinew 牛すじ Gyusuji
The key ingredient is the black soup melting in your mouth and spreading the flavor.
Sankaku さんかく Sankaku
Sankaku is made by baking pollock surimi, a common part of satsuma-age fish paste. With its glutinous texture, it absorbs broth well, giving a sweet taste.
Black Hanpen 黒はんぺん Kurohampen
This is a must, one of the 5 aspects. Its low in calories, and full of nutrients!
Fuwa ふわ Fuwa
Fuwa is cow lungs. It tastes similar to liver, and is a perfect partner to alcoholic beverages.
Although I was surprised by the black soup at first, I quickly realized its gentle taste.
The dashi is a wonderful addition to make each experience different, so make sure to try this amazing oden when you are in Shizuoka Prefecture.
* The published information is current as of May 2023. Prices and other details are subject to change.
Located in Sunpu Castle Park, this candy shop and oden restaurant is marked by the "noren" (curtain) of Shizuoka Oden. It is recognized as one of the "Shizuoka Gourm et Heritage to be Preserved for the Future. It is a popular restaurant loved both as a sightseeing spot and as a place of relaxation for local residents.