All Japanese people, from children to the elderly, love omurice. This dish is a classic example of Western-influenced Japanese cuisine that came into being in Japan.
The person who first came up with the idea of omurice was the founder of the restaurant Hokkyokusei in Osaka, Mr. Shigeo Kitahashi. This town came to be known as “Omurice Town” because Houdatsushimizu-town was his birthplace.
A bronze statue of Shigeo Kitahashi stands in the garden of Yawaragi no Sato in town. He points his finger directly at the North Star (Hokkyokusei), which is shining in the night sky like a signpost.
The Birth of Omurice
Let’s go back 80 years to a corner in Osaka.
Shigeo Kitahashi(Born in Houdatsushimizu-town) was in his 20s at the time, and had opened a restaurant serving Western-style food in Osaka.
The name of the restaurant was Panya no Shokudo.
A person named Kotaka was a regular customer at the time. As Kotaka had problems with his stomach, he always used to eat omelet and white rice.
One day in 1925 (Showa 14), Shigeo, who was an ideas man, said to Kotaka: “I feel sorry for you eating the same thing day in day out when you come here.” He fried up some mushrooms and onions, wrapped tomato ketchup rice in a thinly fried egg and served this special dish to Kotaka.
Kotaka loved the dish and said: “This tastes great! What is it?” Shigeo quickly replied: “It’s omurice, a combination of an omlete and rice.” This quick and witty answer was the moment that omurice was born.
Shigeo decided to think up something, hoping that his customer could enjoy a more flavorsome meal, and wanted his customer to enjoy his meal with friendly conversation. Such was his spirit of hospitality. This dish, which came into being wrapped in good flavor and kindness, was omurice.
Hokkyokusei, the original omurice restaurant in Osaka, formulated the original recipe for Houdatsushimizu-town.
This is a special omurice, that is created using products from this region.
We are pleased to be able to publish this recipe for you on this page.
Please do enjoy eating omurice at home too.
We would like to express our gratitude, once again, to head chef Shigeo Kitahashi at Hokkyokusei.
With great thanks.
Hokkyokusei[Main store in Shinsaibashi] 2-7-27 Nishishinsaibashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, Osaka