Please tell us we’re not the only ones who get hungry when we watch Japanese animated movies!
There’s just something about anime food that shows how much thought was put into every frame of the movie, especially one made by the one and only Hayao Miyazaki of Studio Ghibli. Ashley Burnett of Paste Magazine says it well when she said, “Food is often an expression of love in Ghibli films”.
In celebration of the first batch of Studio Ghibli films to hit Netflix this month, here are just some of the maaaaaany anime food that made us drool, made us wish we lived in the Ghibli universe, and made us wish we could enjoy these dishes in real life.
The Buffet Stall from ‘Spirited Away’
Without a doubt, this scene is perhaps the most memorable foodie moment in Studio Ghibli history. The opening scene of ‘Spirited Away’ shows the main character Chihiro and her parents stumble upon an abandoned theme park but somehow found stalls brimming with food. What happens next is quite disturbing, but when it comes to the food we know we all wanted to share that meal with Chihiro’s parents!
Calcifer’s Breakfast from ‘Howl’s Moving Castle’
Remember the crackling bacon and perfect eggs sizzling on that pan? Who can say no to that? This cooking scene is not just mouthwatering, but it’s also one of the most romantic scenes in ‘Howl’s Moving Castle’. In the movie, the main character Sophie is the only one (aside from Howl) who can control Calcifer, the resident fire demon responsible for warming up the entire castle. We won’t spoil anything for you if you haven’t seen the movie yet, but this part says a lot about Sophie and Howl.
Ham Noodles from ‘Ponyo on the Cliff’
What is a Japanese animated movie without some ramen? In ‘Ponyo on the Cliff’, the adorable main character Ponyo shares a meal with her friend and they were served giant bowls of ramen (or ham noodles) with pink slices of pork and the a perfect egg on top. Watching the two kids slurp the hearty meal is enough to make us crave for a piping hot bowl of this Japanese classic.
Bento Meals from ‘My Neighbor Totoro’
For the Japanese, a packed lunch isn’t just a meal. It’s an art form. In ‘My Neighbor Totoro’, we see the siblings Satsuki and Mei prepare a bunch of bento boxes – some with sardines (or whatever fish that was), green peas, and a sour plum on top of the perfectly steamed white rice.
Aji-Furai from ‘From Up on the Poppy Hill’
Aji-Furai is fried horse mackerel or fish. In the movie, it’s shown being fried to crispy golden perfection, which is basically every foodie’s biggest weakness. And look at that gorgeous animation. Hayao Miyazaki is truly a master of visual storytelling, affecting the viewers’ emotions as well as appetite.
Nimono from ‘Laputa: Castle in the Sky’
Nimono is a stew and in ‘Laputa: Castle in the Sky’, it’s made with winter vegetables. We could almost smell the warm and rich aroma of the huge pot of boiling stew as Lasheeta carefully adds potatoes to the hearty stew. We imagine its has the rich flavors of tomato and a bit of curry, simply because the Japanese people make excellent curry.
Creamy Vegetable Soup from ‘The Secret World of Arietty’
While it is one of the lesser known Studio Ghibli films, ‘The Secret World of Arietty’ has one of the most delicious-looking dishes in the Ghibli universe. This bowl of creamy vegetable soup is already warming up our insides and making us feel better.
How about you? What’s your favorite food from a Studio Ghibli movie? Let us know!