In the kitchen or in the main living room, the fireplace (irori in Japanese) is the hearth of the traditional Japanese house and one of its specific features. Irori is built as a square sunken pit, carved directly in the ground or formed in the raised wooden floor, filled with ash and sand and bordered with timber or stones.
For cooking, the kettles are usually suspended from the ceiling with a decorative hook, jizaikagi. The one from this photo is designed in the shape of a fish, but the mallet of the god Daikokuten, symbol of prosperity, is also a popular choice.
For heating or for cooking, because the traditional Japanese house has no chimney, the preferred fuel used in the irori is charcoal, because it produces less smoke…
Yesterday’s Japan Photo: