At many family gatherings and social events among people whose families date back to pre–Second World War immigration, you’ll find dishes that use recipes harkening back to ones that were brought from Japan from pre–Internment times that have been passed down through the generations.
Others have been adapted, with substituted ingredients due to limited access to food items during the Internment.
One way to try out homestyle Japanese Canadian cuisine is to check out the food prepared and served by various Japanese Canadian community groups at events like the long-running annual Powell Street Festival.
This year, food items made by and in support of community groups at the 45th Powell Street Festival need to be ordered online in advance by tomorrow (July 24) for curbside pickup during the festival on July 31 and August 1 at the Vancouver Buddhist Temple (220 Jackson Avenue).
The street-food savoury pancake okonomiyaki ($6) is available from the Vancouver Japanese Language School, which is also offering yakitori ($5 for two pieces), or grilled skewered chicken. (A combination of these items is available for $10 each.)
A particular popular item that usually sells out is manju ($5 for four pieces), or mochi filled with sweet red bean, by Tonari Gumi.
For a full meal deal, the Vancouver Buddhist Temple is offering two types of deluxe bento boxes: curry beef or curry vegetable ($15 each). Each box comes with rice, two savory fried korroke (croquettes), wakame seaweed salad, and two gyoza with pickled fukujinzuke (relish for curry).
All of these items can be ordered online at the Powell Street Festival website.