ANA Culinary Delights: An Updated Tradition at Home,
Innovative Options in the Sky
Helping Families Celebrate the New Year with a Unique Twist
on Traditional Osechi Ryori
Every year, families across Japan come together to welcome the new year -- oshogatsu. Among the many customs associated with new year’s celebrations, one of the most well-known is osechi ryori, a time-honored cuisine with special symbolic significance. ANA honors this tradition by offering an updated version of osechi to families throughout Japan.
What is Osechi?
Osechi consists of different types of dishes packed into a jubako (Japanese tiered boxes).
Each dish is uniquely symbolic, representing good fortune and well-being for the upcoming year. For example, kuri kinton (candied chestnuts and mashed sweet potatoes) brings luck for wealth and prosperity, while kazunoko (seasoned herring roe) signifies a thriving and prosperous family.
With deep roots in Japanese culture, osechi serves as a representation of “washoku” or Japanese cuisine. This treasure trove of treats brings families together as everyone gathers to make food in preparation for New Year’s Day.
ANA Original OSECHI
ANA has been delivering osechi to the homes of many families throughout Japan for over 20 years. In 2013, the “ANA Original OSECHI” was introduced by ANA Catering Service (ANAC) and sold in Japan through ANA’s online shop A-style (website only in Japanese).
We spoke to Seigou Mori, Japanese Cuisine Head Chef at ANAC, to gain insight into ANA’s unique approach to osechi and the future of in-flight meals at ANA.
“Each dish is chosen so every bite is a perfect balance of textures and flavors,” said Mori.
The “ANA Original OSECHI” features an extensive array of dishes from traditional foods like kuri kinton and kazunoko, to fusion dishes which are customized every year. This year’s fusion dish is a twist on a Hokkaido staple, ika-meshi (squid filled with rice) stuffed with a squid ink pilaf.
As the largest Japanese airline, ANA selects ingredients that highlight Japanese culture in each tier of the osechi. Dishes such as the ika-meshi are crafted exclusively for ANA to seamlessly complement the other components of the osechi.
To deliver a unique experience for customers, this upcoming year’s osechi features ANA’s exclusive ceramic plates, adorned with a dragon motif to represent the Year of the Dragon. ANA plans to continue offering exclusive ceramic plates, each with a unique collectible dragon design in the new year.
With remarkable feedback and loyal customers year after year, the “ANA Original OSECHI” is sure to be the centerpiece of many future oshogatsu gatherings!
ANA’s Culture of Culinary Innovation
“We are always seeking to innovate our dishes with new textures and fresh ingredients,” said Mori. By highlighting the ingredients and flavors of each season, his team always seeks to create a dining experience for ANA customers unlike any other.
Whether at home or thousands of feet in the air, ANA is always finding innovative new ways to redefine cuisine. For 2024, why not welcome the new year with a taste of osechi at home or a delicious ANA meal in-flight!