Japanese culture is fascinating to many Americans of European descent. We have found a love of all things Japanese, most especially the food! If you're looking for snack foods or party food with a Japanese flair, here are some great Japanese snack ideas.

Yakitori – A kabob that is quite popular as a snack, party food, or casual dinner item.
(Goes well with Japanese beer and Saki.)

Begin by soaking your wooden skewers in water to prevent them from burning.
-3 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
-1 teaspoon sugar
-2 Tablespoons sake
-3 Tablespoons mirin
-3 Tablespoons soy sauce

Skewer the chicken on the soaked skewers. Mix remaining ingredients in a bowl. Grill the skewered chicken, using the sauce as a baste.

Edamame - Edamame has become more popular as a Japanese snack food in America in recent years, so it's getting easier to find it in the grocery stores. Serve it like we would pretzels (with beer during the game) or keep it in baggies like trail mix as a snack on the go. What a great way to get the kids to eat veggies! (Be wary of folks who are allergic to soy, though!)

Wash your edamame thoroughly. Boil a large pot of water. Add a Tablespoon of salt to the boiling water and boil the edamame for three to four minutes. Drain and sprinkle with a little more salt. Cool it and store in an airtight container.

Sunomomo (Cucumber and Daikon Salad) – A great side dish for almost any meal, as well as a fresh afternoon snack.
-1 daikan radish
-1 cucumber
-5 Tablespoons rice vinegar
-2 Tablespoon sugar
-1 teaspoon salt

Peel the radish and slice it thinly. Slice the cucumber just as thinly. Salt both vegetables and allow the salt to soak in for about ten minutes. Wash them off and drain well. Mix the vinegar and sugar and pour over the veggies. Let sit for at least fifteen minutes before serving.

With the expansion of the Asian section in most grocery stores, and more and more Asian specialty stores opening up, you are sure to find plenty of ingredients and ideas for Japanese snack foods.