Japanese Idiom: To Eat Cold Rice

rice bowl

Photo by el patojo on Flickr

We have an idiom in English when we do something stupid and have to face the consequences, it’s called being in the doghouse. The Japanese have a something similar, except it has to do with the temperature of your rice :)

hiyameshi o kuu – 冷や飯を食う (ひやめしをくう)

Meaning: Eating cold rice.

This is a fun idiom as it really brings across the feeling of being left out in the cold to eat your rice. Be careful or it’s cold rice time!

Here’s an example sentence from the book 2001 Japanese and English Idioms:

Kaisha no hoshin ni hantai shita tame, ichi nen hiyameshi o kutte shimaimashita.


I was eating cold rice for a year for opposing company policies.

Let us know if you’ve ever heard or used this idiom before :)

One Response to “Japanese Idiom: To Eat Cold Rice”

  1. Eydna  on October 10th, 2012

    I’ve never heard of it ! thanks for telling us about this idiom :)

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