• Kyodo News

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The Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry on Tuesday released an English-language guidebook on local cuisines to promote tourism in rural areas.

Ten thousand copies of “Japan’s Tasty Secrets” will be given out at Narita, Chubu and Kansai international airports, as well as at travel fairs hosted in Asia, Europe and the United States, the ministry said.

The guidebook, based on more than 100 local dishes the ministry selected in 2007, is divided into two sections, the first dedicated to popular local cuisines and the second to more traditional fare.

The first part, “Local dishes loved by the nation,” lists 23 items, such as Kanagawa Prefecture’s Yokosuka Navy curry and Hyogo Prefecture’s Kobe beef steak.

The second section, “Local favorites: a taste of place,” has 95 dishes, including Iwate Prefecture’s “wanko” soba noodles and Miyazaki Prefecture’s “hiya-jiru” (cold miso soup).

The book was translated and edited by Adam Fulford, a veteran of making English versions of Japanese TV programs.

“There are many discoveries to be made in Japanese food culture,” Fulford said. “I hope people will try many of the dishes.”

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