Okuizome (First meal) day!
“Okuizome” (first meal) is the Japanese traditional ritual that parents perform around the 100th day after the birth of their baby along with their family and relatives (sometimes friends, too) to wish the baby will never starve by sharing a celebratory meal.
The celebratory meal is in the traditional “one soup and three dishes (一汁三菜）” style and generally consists of Osekihan (rice cooked with red beans), whole grilled fish such as snapper, soup, Nimono (simmered food), and pickles, which are eaten with celebratory chopsticks made of willow.
We prepared Osekihan, Chikuzen-ni (simmered vegetables & chicken), Miso soup with shijimi, Simmered snapper, Pickled plum.
In this ritual, the most senior person among the grandparents or relatives wishes a long life by pretending to feed the baby in the order of “rice, soup, rice, fish, rice, and soup” and repeats this process three times.
The person performing the ritual touches a stone found at a shrine or at the waterfront with the chopsticks and then rubs their tips on the baby’s gums to wish for healthy growth of teeth. I got the stones from local shrine the other day while walking around with Mario and Luigi.
In the past, it was customary for the mother’s side of the family to gift a lacquered dining set with the family emblem of the father, but it is now becoming more common to give weaning dishes. We used the special plates that my parents brought from the hometown. My daughter was wondering what’s happening. It was a great Sunday!