Japanese Word: The Meaning of Gomoku
“Gomoku (五目)” is a Japanese word that is often used in the names of Japanese dishes but can hardly be heard in daily life.
In fact, when I hear Gomoku, what comes to my mind right away is only 4 things; “Gomoku Narabe (五目並べ)”, “Gomoku Zushi (Sushi) (五目寿司)”, “Gomoku Chahan (五目炒飯)”, and “Gomoku Ramen (五目ラーメン)”.
So what we Japanese mean by saying just “Gomoku” in everyday life is almost always Gomoku Narabe.
The Meaning of Gomoku in Japanese Cuisine
The Japanese word, Gomoku is composed of 2 Chinese characters or Kanji, “五 (Go)” literally meaning five, and “目” that is usually pronounced as “Me” and means eye, but in this case, it is a counter word for pieces and read as “Moku”.
So Go-Moku literally refers to 5 pieces or 5 varieties, but when the word is used in the names of dishes, it has a different meaning from the original meaning.
Actually, in Japanese cuisine, the word Gomoku basically means a dish is made with a wide variety of ingredients, which is not limited to 5 kinds.
Thus in general, Gomoku Zushi, Gomoku Chahan, and Gomoku Ramen all contain more food materials than average varieties in their categories.