Yes, this is our tradition, Toshi Koshi Soba, means getting over the year soba.

There are many reasons.
In Japan, we call the last day of the year “Oh-misoka” and typically follow a tradition to eat soba (=Japanese noodle made from buckwheat) and listen to the striking bell at the temple to see the old year out. Each custom is called “Toshikoshi soba” and “Joya no kane”, respectively.

Even people who do not eat soba( = Japanese noodle) often are tempted to eat soba during the last days of the year, based on our unique customary thoughts from the ancient times that we cannot finish up the old year without eating soba. There are some reasons why we choose soba and not any other kind of food:

(1)It is thought that soba is a bringer of good luck, family fortunes, and longevity because soba is physically long.

(2) On the contrary, since soba is easy to bite, it is also considered to forget and sever any carryover of hardship and disaster that may have happened during the year.

(3)The third opinion is believed that soba collects fortunes; During the Edo period , a gold and silver craftsmen used balls made of kneaded buckwheat (=soba) to collect splattered gold and silver pieces in the working area, and burned the ball over hibachi (= Japanese heating appliance using charcoal as fuel) to catch residue gold and silver pieces.

While soba maybe a Japanese style fast-food, it seems to have an additional value during the new year period.

By the way, SOBA is a great food for your health.
Soba Noodles are Gluten Free “” People who are allergic to gluten, or who plan to avoid it for health reasons, can rejoice in soba noodles. Buckwheat is actually a fruit seed, rather than a cereal grain like wheat, and is free of gluten, but contains all the essential amino acids (protein), including lysine, which is absent in wheat. Soba noodles can be purchased in dried form, and cooked at home, just like other wheat noodles.

Buckwheat is Good for the Heart “” It has been found that buckwheat contains a flavonoid called “Rutin” which helps reduce LDL cholesterol (linked with heart disease conditions) and promotes the generation of HDL cholesterol which improves your cardio health. Buckwheat also helps lower your lipid levels thanks to the activity of rutin.

Soba Noodles are Rich in Magnesium “” One of the major minerals found in buckwheat is magnesium. Eating soba noodles can help enrich the magnesium reserves in your body. Magnesium helps improve blood flow by relaxing the blood vessels. It also helps in nutrient delivery by lowering blood pressure. So magnesium in combination with rutin can help improve your cardiovascular health significantly, that really makes soba noodles healthy for you.

Buckwheat helps Control Blood Sugar “” It’s been found that the nutrients present in buckwheat can help control your blood sugar and also improve the insulin response of the cells. Hence soba noodles are a healthy alternative, to wheat noodles, for people suffering from diabetes. It has also been found that foods rich in magnesium lower your risk of diabetes by about 24 percent, soba noodles are rich in magnesium and hence can help protect you against conditions like diabetes.

Buckwheat can Help Protect Against Gallstones “” Buckwheat is high in insoluble fiber, which makes it a great asset for preventing conditions like gallstones. Insoluble fiber is known to help move food quickly through the intestines, reduce the secretion of bile acids and lower blood fats. High secretions of bile acids is mostly responsible for the formation of gallstones.

Soba Noodles are Not Fattening “” Since buckwheat is high in insoluble fiber, it contributes towards reducing the “digestible calories” in the noodles. So soba noodles actually has less digestible calories as compared to rice or wheat noodles. The insoluble fiber present in soba noodles also helps create a feeling of fullness in the stomach which keeps you from being hungry from a good period of time, hence you need consume less food and thus gain less weight.

Soba Noodles are Rich Sources of Thiamine “” In ancient Japan, the rich classes used to eat white rice, and rice noodles, while the farmers, or rural population, consumed soba noodles. It was found that the instances of “beri beri” (a skin disease related to deficiency of thiamine) was on the rise among the rich class while it was absent in the rural population. This prompted the rich class to start eating soba noodles, which help prevent the onset of beri beri. Buckwheat is a rich source of thiamine and other essential vitamins like Riboflavin and choline.

Soba noodles are very good for your health and are gluten-free, making it a great alternative to wheat noodles. You can eat soba noodles boiled in a broth or fried with vegetables or meat, it makes for a tasty meal and it’s highly nutritious to boot.

How to make soba from soba flour? Go to below.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2341.html

Do I like Soba? Very much. I can eat it every day. No question, it is just good and feel healthy and you know I am on diet all the time exceptt Sundays.

We have hot soba, cold soba and soba salad on the menu. Please try one of them.

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