According to traditional folklore in Japan, one should not work during the New Year. For this reason (and also because all the shops would be closed) it became popular to purchase boxed sets of prepared meals, which soon became specially associated with New Year’s. These traditional foods, called osechi ryori, are served inside special decorative ojubako boxes and include a wide variety of colorful dishes, with each one traditionally holding a special meaning in welcoming the New Year. In addition, many people enjoy ozōni– a hot soup containing mochi rice cakes, which is strongly associated with good fortune for the New Year.

Send us a comment about this article