Do you love Japanese food and wish that you could create some of those great Japanese dishes like shrimp tempura, katsudon curry, or yakitori, but don’t know where to get some of the necessary ingredients to complete these recipes?
The first thing you might want to try is to visit your local supermarket 日本醬汁. Almost every large supermarket contains an aisle of ethnic foods, right? Well, if you live in Hawaii, you might be in luck due to the high concentration of Japanese immigrants to that state over the years; however, for the rest of the country, all you will find in the supermarket are a few packs of Ramen noodles, some bottles of soy sauce, and maybe a bottle of teriyaki sauce if you are lucky.
A step up from the supermarket would be a visit to the local Asian market. While at first this might seem like a good idea, again it depends on what area of the country you live in. Asian markets in Hawaii and California have quite a bit of great Japanese food, condiments, spices, or whatever else you might require. You will find that Asian markets in the rest of the country will be hit or miss.
Most of the Asian markets where I live are run by families from Vietnam or Thailand. Still, these Asian markets will have a better selection of Japanese food than the average supermarket. I have had some success finding Japanese Kewpie brand mayonnaise as well as Vermont Curry roux (despite the name, this curry roux is 100% Japanese), as well as some Japanese snacks like Pocky at these markets.