日本料理 柏屋 大阪千里山 Japanese Cuisine Kashiwaya Osaka Senriyama

お料理 Cuisine

“MEDICINE HUNTING”From Grain Rain to Start of Summer

Grain rain* is the rain at the end of spring giving us the fruitful season, and is also called Natane-Tsuyu because it rains in the canola flower (Natane) season. The rain before the start of summer* has a potency to grow fresh green leaves from sprouts.

The Start of Summer is on May 5 which is also known as “Tango no sekku festival”. On the same day in 611, Empress Suiko hold the “medicine hunting” in Utano, Uda district, Nara. The women picked medicinal herbs, while the men hunted deer for their antler velvet, which is one of the medicine. They also picked irises and Japanese mugworts which are essential for today’s Tango no sekku festival. They believed the bath with irises and mugworts protects themselves from a plague.

With the medicinal herbs, fragrances (e.g. agarwood and clove) were packed in a Japanese brocade bag, which was called the scented ball (Kusudama). Ancient people decorated it with five colored threads and pray for longevity and good health. They would try to prepare for the intense heat of midsummer.

Ancient people felt the changing of the season, were delighted with blessings of nature. Also, they spend their lives while remembering a sense of awe of nature. It seems that an important heart, which modern people forget, were hidden in tradition and custom.

The world still suffers an unprecedented disaster of COVID-19. Japan especially continues to get worse but we need to believe tomorrow and do what we should do without giving up. After rain comes fair weather.

*Grain rain/ Start of Summer: The traditional East Asian calendars divide a year into 24 solar terms. “Grain rain” is the 6th solar term and starts from 4/20 to 5/5. “Start of Summer” is the 7th solar term and starts from 5/5 to 5/20.

The contents might be changed depending on the day’s stocks.

*The above is the menu for orchids (¥ 35,000).