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Learn how to make Osechi Ryori, Japan’s traditional New Year’s meal! Cooking Lessons in English at Kaco’s Cooking School (Okayama)

Learn how to make Osechi Ryori, Japan’s traditional New Year’s meal! Cooking Lessons in English at Kaco’s Cooking School (Okayama)

Highly recommended for anyone who wants to learn Japanese home cooking!

Kaco Hatase is a vibrant, super outgoing person who also happens to be a cooking teacher. But she’s not just any teacher; she’s the granddaughter of the founder of Hatase Cooking School, the first cooking school in Okayama. Even though I know how to cook pretty well, I’ve taken several lessons with Kaco to learn how to make some things that I don’t know how to cook, including some of her own specialties. Kaco’s family owns several popular cafes in Okayama, and she has planned the menus there—and now she is teaching you how to make some of her signature dishes.

In this lesson, we’ll learn how to make several traditional and modern takes on classic osechi ryori, Japan’s traditional New Year’s meal. This is a hands-on lesson, and you’ll get to take a box of food home after the lesson. Kaco can customize ingredients for participants’ needs, so please let her know in advance if you have any dietary restrictions (due to religion, food allergies, etc.).

Osechi Ryori boxes (the author’s photo; used with permission of participants)

Date & time: December 3, 2023/1:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m.

Meeting place: Directions to the instructor’s home kitchen will be sent after registration.

Cost: 8,800 yen, payable in cash on the day of the lesson. Includes instructor’s fee, all ingredients, and recipes in English that you can take home.

Minimum number in lesson: 2

Maximum number in lesson: 5

How to apply: Please send a message via her Facebook page; Either Japanese or English is fine. https://www.facebook.com/kacos.japanese.cooking

Other info: Please bring the lesson fee (the exact amount), an apron, a jyuu-bako box to put your meal in, and a large bag (optional). If you don’t have a jyuu-bako, please let the instructor know; you can bring a large food storage box instead.

Note: Kaco also offers obento [boxed lunch] lessons as well as other menu options such as rolled sushi, okonomiyaki, dumplings, and more. Please contact her for more information. These lessons are priced accordingly.

Photograph by the instructor; used with permission



I'm from the U.S.A., but I've lived longer in Okayama. I'm a sake sommelier, certified by the Sake Sommelier Association in London. I love traveling in Japan, beautifully presented food and desserts, great art, taking photos, hiking and walking, visiting gardens, and spending time with family and friends.