Ochazuke | Articles on Japanese Restaurants | Japan Restaurant Guide by Gourmet Navigator
Ochazuke is a dish where tea is poured on rice. Japanese tea such as "ryokucha" green tea or "hojicha" roasted green tea is commonly used but ochazuke with oolong tea and dash stock or soup added can also be seen. In ochazuke, various ingredients are used and eaten, such as umeboshi, Japanese pickles, salmon, nori, tsukudani, and shiokara, and ingredients are usually chosen by the person's preference. As the bancha and sencha became common, and tea spread to the people as a beverage after the mid Edo period.
Wasyoku(Japanese Cuisine) encyclopedia : Ochazuke
For workers who were apprenticed to merchants at the time, needed a quick meal during work, and it started when rice was eaten with tea poured in. There was no way of keeping the rice temperature, and ochazuke was valued as it was used to make cold rice delicious. In the Genroku period the "ochazuke shops" began appearing, and ochazuke became a fast food and loved by the people. Today ochazuke tends to be eaten as a simple meal, at lunch or dinner, or after drinking alcohol. In the surrounding areas of Kashiwazaki city, Niigata prefecture, where it is known as a producer of sea bream for a long time, there is a local food called "sea bream chazuke", using sea bream sashimi as an ingredient, and tea or dashi stock poured in. Other than Niigata, sea bream chazuke is eaten in Fukuoka and in Ehime where it is produced, and in Saga and Nagasaki, there is a horse mackerel chazuke.
Many of the variations were developed as a local gourmet, and In the surrounding areas of Warabi city of Saitama Prefecture, there is a "waraku chazuke" where tea is poured over cooked onigiri and eaten. The introduction of instant chazuke cannot be forgotten, for helping enjoy the chazuke at home. In 1952, "ochzuke nori" was first devised and sold by "Nagatanien". It has tea, one serving size of matcha, and soup powder in a package. It was a very innovative product at the time as only emptying package on rice and pouring hot water was needed to finish the dish. For people living alone or for young people who do not drink tea from a teapot, it has become popular as a strong ally when they are hungry and want to eat.