My guess is you probably already have in your kitchen most of the utensils and tools needed to prepare Japanese food - a sharp knife is essential. My thirty year old carbon steel knife from Aritsugu in Kyoto is my best friend in the kitchen. My grandmother used to wrap her good knives in old newspaper to keep them from rusting. When she took out the sashimi knife from the drawer, my spine would straighten up because I knew she would be making some sashimi and we would be in for a treat. For stirring and picking up food, I use chopsticks like extensions of my hand. I have several long ones. They are gentler for handling food than using a pair of metal tongs. I have a vegetable slicer called Benrina, which has several interchangable blades for shredding and slicing. It's great because it doesn't take up so much space and electricity as a food processor does. Graters are useful for grating daikon radish, ginger and wasabi. I have a mortar and pestle (suri-bachi and suri-goki). The ridged interior of a Japanese mortar and pestle works efficiently to grind sesame seeds to make sesame paste. Also used to mix miso paste, and nuts, and make tofu dressing and sauces. Always present in every Japanese kitchen is the bamboo mat (sudare) for rolling sushi, shaping egg omelettes and vegetables like spinach.