Apart from rice, staples include noodles, such as soba and udon.
The term is also used to describe the first course served in standard kaiseki cuisine nowadays.
Foreign food—in particular Chinese food in the form of noodles in soup called ramen, fried dumplings, and gyoza—plus curry and hamburgers are commonly found in Japan.
Historically, the Japanese shunned meat, but with the modernization of Japan in the 1880s, meat-based dishes such as tonkatsu became common.
Side dishes often consist of fish, pickled vegetables, and vegetables cooked in broth.
Seafood and vegetables are also deep-fried in a light batter, as tempura.