March 1, 2013


shin = new
mono = thing, object, etc.
Shinmono refers to a new crop or catch of a certain food in season such as fish, seafood, fruit, and vegetable.
The term is almost interchangeable with hatsumono (hatsu = first).  One site says that shinmono can be used to refer to a processed food, while hatsumono is restricted to fish, seafood, fruit, and vegetable. 

Note:  The kanji for shinmono (new and thing) can also be read aramono.  I'm not sure which sounds more proper.
注: 新物は「あらもの」とも読めます。どちらが正しいのかはっきりしません。

Today, I got these two shinmono:
Boiled firefly squid from Hyogo
Fresh wakame from Sanriku


Yangsze said...

How interesting to see the difference between "shin mono" and "hatsu mono". I can see the difference in the first kanji which are read as "xin" and "chu" respectively in Chinese. Somehow "chu"/"hatsu" has a more organic, old fashioned feeling about it so I can understand why it might be used more for unprocessed food.

I love reading your blog because of these interesting facts!

Sissi said...

What a funny cute squid! I have never seen anything similar and I would love to have a couple of these (I'm crazy for squid!). You always make me discover new products and even animals! (not to mention dishes).

Fräulein Trude said...

Never heard about those squids before and googled a bit - very interesting little creatures. They glow in the dark but I guess not after they had been cooked. I love to eat fried mini squids (calmari, seppioline), but it is quite a hassle to clean and prepare them.

Hiroyuki said...

I didn't expect to get three comments for such a casual post!

Yangsze: There is more to shinmono, aramono, hatsumono, and hinemono (ひねもの, 古物). I will post about them when I feel confident. Japanese is really tricky even for native Japanese!

Sissi: Firefly squid is in season until April or mid-May, so you have to time your visit to Japan to savor the flavor of the squid.

Kiki: You are right. They no longer glow when dead. In Japan, boiled firefly squid is simply eaten in the sashimi style (often with su miso).