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Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/1 23:59
I will be going to Akita in Japan for 15 days for a student exchange program at Akita International University. Can someone kindly tell me if there are any places in the city where one can get Halal food? If not, then maybe strictly vegetarian food with no alcohol content? I'm a bit worried about what I would be able to eat, as it turns out even tempura has a little bit of alcohol mixed into it. I have brought some food over from home, but I would like to try some local delicacies too. Arigatou gozaimasu :)
by Farhana (guest)  

Re: Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/2 11:03
Hi Farhana,

I don't know about specifically halal restaurants that serve halal meat in Akita, so I'll leave that to be answered by someone else.

But you'll fare better than vegetarians since Japanese food, as you probably well know, is based around seafood which I understand is halal.

As for alcohol, the Japanese do often use sake or mirin in cooking and both contain alcohol in their original form. But when used in cooking, it is invariably first boiled in a process they call "nikiri" to eliminates the alcohol content since the smell of alcohol ruins flavour. Alcohol evaporates at 65 degrees, less than the boiling point of 100 degrees, so the resulting sauce is alcohol-free.

I don't know how this is interpreted in religious terms, but my personal assumption would be that it would be OK, since the resulting product no longer contains any alcohol (in the same way all vinegars and by extension ketchup etc. are made from alcohol but do not contain it).

If we work on that assumption, you'll be OK if you just avoid anything that contains meat. For example, avoid ramen noodles that are served in a meat-based stock, but you're OK with most soba and udon noodle dishes, which are served with a fish-based dipping sauce or stock unless you go out of your way to order a special meat version of it.

On the other hand, if sauces made with sake is not acceptable even after boiling, then I'm afraid your choice would be quite limited since sake is such a key ingredient. I'm sure you will still find something local that you can eat (such as tempura restaurants that server them with salt only rather than with dipping sauce) but it will take some effort.
by Tico (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/2 11:16
Also, I just remembered - soy sauces often contain small amounts of alcohol.

Short of checking the list of ingredients of soy sauces used in restaurants, perhaps it might be a good idea to, for example when choosing a fish dish, go for salt-grilled fish (shioyaki) and don't put any soy sauce on it? There will always be ways :)
by Tico (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/2 11:25
Interesting article about it here (since the issue made me curious!)
by Tico (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/2 23:02
Thanks so much Tico! You are a lifesaver! Will definitely be careful and will ask for the locals' help too. Yup, sake is a key ingredient, and more so considering that Akita is Japan's home of Sake. Thanks again!
by Farhana (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/3 16:51
Salam ,, try
by Syed (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Halal food in Akita? 2012/2/4 10:23
u can order halal food and u can cook at home.u will be satisfied.
by MAZHAR rate this post as useful

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