I was watching the morning news a few days back (Fujisankei morning news in the US, to be exact), and they introduced another strange but interesting Japanese food phenomenon: morning curry!
Ever since it was broadcast in the media that Ichiro (the baseball player) ate curry rice for breakfast before big games, an increasing number of people have started to consume curry rice in the mornings. Here is another source that looks at this interesting fad: http://blog.benippon.com/2009/06/morning-curry-boom.html
I was assuming that everyone was eating curry rice from the night before, but that doesn't seem to be the case, either. People actually stop by curry restaurants on their way to work in the mornings, and curry companies like House sell curry packets at the grocery stores that are specifically "Asa-Curry" (asa, meaning morning) http://news.walkerplus.com/2009/0122/13/20090122224752_01_400.jpg
Why did everyone suddenly get into eating morning curry? Ichiro does play a huge role, but some people believe that the spice wakes them up in the morning. Thus, some businessmen prefer to eat curry rice on the mornings of big meetings. Moms also like to think that the spices in curry helps make their kids more alert, so morning curry is also eaten in households of jyukensei (students preparing for entrance exams).
One of the people being interviewed said he eats curry every morning because it is not too heavy (...really? it could depend on the brand), and because it has a lot of vegetables (onions and carrots and potatoes...which do not sound like a lot of vegetables, but it's probably more than the average person would have in the morning). But everyone has their own preferences.
I actually do eat curry in the mornings, but only when it's left over from the night before. Do you ever eat curry in the mornings? If you don't, would you think Ichiro, or any of those other reasons would be a good reason to start doing so? I'd love to hear back!
-Alissa (from http://umaimon.tumblr.com)
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