These traditional herbs of spring are sold everywhere in a bundle from supermarkets to florists to greeneries. The basket comprises suzuna (turnip); hakobera (chickweed); gogyou (cudweed); hotokenoza (henbit); nazuna (shepard’s purse); seri (watercress); suzushiro (daikon radish).

They will go in the pot to make nanakusa-gayu. January 7th is the day to eat a light and nutritious meal: This is okayu (rice porridge) flavoured with haru no nanakusa (the seven herbs of spring). Eating the rice porridge on this day is supposed to ward off illness all year long.

Just wash them, chop them up and stir them into cooked okayu. — Jan 30, 2007


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