During the Edo Period (1603-1867) of Japanese history, wealthy merchants and rich samurai began to eat a kaiseki style of Japanese food based around polished white rice served with a number of side dishes such as miso soup, tsukemono pickles, fried fish and tofu served with sake where appropriate. This was the beginning of what can now be seen as classic Japanese cuisine.
To facilitate cooking rice and a number of other dishes at the same time a large stove was necessary and the charcoal-burning kamado developed in the kitchens of tea houses and the homes of the wealthy.
The example, pictured above, is from the Sumiya Montenashi Museum (a former teahouse) in Shimabara, Kyoto. Early kamado were made of clay before ceramic stoves were introduced.
As an adjunct to the development of a multi-course Japanese cuisine many different ceramic dishes, sake flasks and lacquer ware bowls and trays were needed to serve the food.
Associated pottery and lacquer ware crafts developed to meet demand throughout the Edo era and were to reach a high standard.
Guide Books on Tokyo & Japan