Pretty much only one thing happened during the past days: rain. So it was a great opportunity for me to start experimenting with Japanese cooking. The results were satisfying, so I’ll try to keep up the pace and try to get better! The recipes that weren’t improvised, were successful thanks to japanesecooking101. Pro tip: Be extremely careful when you buy the ingredients; the contents may look the same, the kanji may look the same, BUT it’s highly possible that it’s NOT the same.
Avocado-Chicken with Korean noodles
Japanese satsuma sweet potato a la amani (basically boiled in sugar syrup) [recipe here]
An awful lot of ingredients here – I mixed up too many things together, but at least it was eatable; salmon flakes, avocado, bean sprouts, fermented bamboo shoots (menma), red ginger (紅ショウガ), some king of transparent noodles made of kudzu starch (くずきり) which I accidentally bought instead of bean threads (春雨) – I wanted to make this cooling salad .
Trying to make gyoza. I made it using a filling with minced pork meat, cabbage, green onion etc. The folding is tricky at the beginning, but ‘practice makes perfect’. In the background: Vietnamese ‘Nem’ cooked by my roommate, and an episode of ‘Rick and Morty’. I had to spend my time resourcefully, considering I was making gyoza, tsukune and greek meatballs all at once.
Special Halloween KitKat with caramel pudding flavor: The individual packages came with cute little messages like ‘thank you!’, ‘sorry’, ‘you can do it’, ‘good job’, ‘of course’ & ‘friends’
Special edition Milk Tea with Princess Ariel and her sisters, from Disney’s ‘Little Mermaid’
PLUS: What to eat in okinawa
- サーターアンダギー(saataa andagii): something like doughnut, with brown sugar coating
- 紅イモ(beni imo) tarts/soft cream/kitkat/everything: purple yam flavour
- タコライス(tako rice): doesn’t have any actual taco(octopus) and comes in a lot of variations with avocado, tomato , etc
- ソーキそば(sokisoba): soba served containing giant lumps of meat
- ゴーヤチャンプルー(goya champuru): omelette style dish with the okinawan cucumber(goya), tofu, pork etc
- Orion beer: the local beer, they advertise it everywhere, and comes in 3-4 variations
- さんぴん茶: jasmine tea, but it’s supposed to be a special okinawan blend that offers longelivity
- シークワーサー・パッションフルーツ・マンゴ・グアバ お酒 (flat lemon/passion fruit/mango/guava drinks)：local alcoholic cocktail canned drinks with tropical fruit flavours
- 泡盛(awamori): the local alcoholic drink (around 25%), resembling shochu in terms of production, as it is a product of distillation
How would you like your drink? straight, on rocks or with a snake?
Orion beer, the local Okinawan beer with a summery taste
So-ki soba (with pork), a huge meal for only 700yen
Kimchi unagi don (rice bowl with eel and korean spices) at the Sukiya. Cheap and tasty
If you can’t decide on a single flavor, why don’t you choose harf and harf? (sorry for the bad quality)
Beni imo soft cream – They love the purple yam taste in the south.
Takorice and ramen
EXTRA SECTION: Cosmetics
Silicon covers for relaxing and hydrating the feet
Concentrated facial masks; I saw them for a first time, and tried to infuse one with the Kose ‘Sekkisei herbal gel’, with satisfying results
The past weeks were so full of trips and outings, that I feel like staying in for a week is the best way to go, which is pretty strange, because if you know me, you also know that I NEVER do that! Anyway, baito is fun, meeting new people is fun, drinking with new people from the baito is even better. Here follows a petite introduction to some random drinks etc that I came across last week and attracted my attention.
Lab party with random japanese and finnish drinks. I tried to google translate the contents of jaloviina, but the only thing I got was “jumbo jumbo jumbo jumbo jumbo”.
How NOT to make toast bread. Attempt #1: put ham and cheese, text for a while and you get this magnificent colourful result. Attempt #2: re-do by putting nothing on top, and get a DIY world’s blackest black easily at home.
Frula pear soda. It took me a while to figure out how to de-attach the ball on the cap. This thing needs strength! But the drink was all about the looks after all, nothing special regarding the content.
Precure donuts from Mr. Donut. Comes with marshmallow ears and smarties-style eyes and cheeks. The strawberry flavour of the topping hits your nostrils right away!
New Zealand red IPA beer. I adooored the smell, it was perfect for a cool summer evening. And the taste was also full of fruit flavors. Highly Recommended! (Also, I don’t know if it was intended but the name sounds like “Little -grim- ripper” to me)
How to properly drink nihonshuu. 1) Put a shot glass inside a square box. 2) Fill the shot glass with sake, let it overflow until it fills the box to the brim as well. 3) Drink from the shot glass and then drink from the box as well. 4) Triple quantity in one go, that’s the way to go!
The best flavoured filter coffee around here, for the time being. This one is “vanilla macadamia”, but I think i liked “hazelnut” more. Hawaiian dancing coffee beans – hooray!
“Make your own beer” club
That’s not a valid number for alcohol percentage!
When the mood is down, it’s time for BBQ
Featured Image: Night sea in Kamakura, the foam on top of the waves was glowing with an awesome electric blue hue. No camera could capture that view.
You know, my main goal since I came here, is to try every silly food that exists. It’s the country of infinite possibilities! Also, after a quick experimentation session I decided that (apart from maccha that will always have a special space in my heart and stomach) my favourite flavour is kurogoma(黒ゴマ － black sesame). Subsequently, I started using kurogoma oil in pretty much every dish I cook at home.
Also, I tried to cook a traditional Greek dish with green beans the other day, you know? Ah, didn’t work out well. The beans that I bought at the supermarket had the correct colour, correct shape, correct texture – but they were not the normal green beans! It was soy beans, the ones that Japanese grill and eat while drinking alcohol. You cannot eat the outside part, so my whole dish was ruined, it was a disaster. Meh, they do say that ‘as long as you live, you learn’.
The japanese usually eat grilled soy beans while drinking
japanese wakashi (traditional sweets) – minimal presentation and balanced flavour
Some kind of pork donburi, I really didn’t like it, too much fat in the meat
Caesar salad with avocado and spaghetti with eggplants
pachi pachi paniku! those soda caramels pop in your mouth (oh, and if japanese people give it to you without explaining, the element of surprise at it’s finest)
First attempt of homemade miso soup – I had no nori so I used green onion and parsley (foreigner fail!)
coconut biscuits, perfect as an afternoon snack in the lab
Maccha ice cream in Harajukuuuuuu
Greek traditional food with green beans and tomato sauce (fasolakia) accompanied by salmon maki sushi
guracha snack omiyage from kansai
kurogoma taiyaki, I said it’s my new favourite, right?
Driving schools or mobile companies usually give out those snacks for free. A lot of different flavours, one verdict – untasty
Kurogoma icecream. Such in interesting color selection for icecream!
Italian ice cream with 1.sakura, 2.lemon tart flavours from Venus port in Odaiba
Takoyaki from the takoyaki museum in odaiba. It even has a tako shrine!
4 flavoured pizza from pizza hat (not as bad as I expected it to be)
Red bean paste jelly sweet. Actually, it was fun eating in, with that slimy texture
meiji maccha cookies – oh my god I’m addicted
Sashimi plate and beers in Aobadai
Man actually comes from China, but the Japanese love it, so it’s provided in a million different flavours. This is pizzaman.
Ichiryu ramen in shibuya. The first time that I ordered karai-ramen and the dish was actually spicy!
The famous maccha tiramisu in momiji, Kamakura. If it’s too crowded, you can always buy some takeout dorayaki
I found greek chocolate (love you ION) in a lawson!
Abura ramen. In these chain shops every bowl size costs the same. I ordered the biggest and I couldn’t finish it in any way
Tabehodai with yakiniku. Pay a certain amount and eat as much as you want for two hours. IT’S PARADISE
Vietnamese sween from beans. The texture is powderish and it is not so sweet, but is excellent with tea
Kit Kat! Top: Rum and Raisins. Bottom: Japanese Sake
Tempura in Kamakura. Worth it!
Finally, let’s hear what Yotsuba (from Yotsubato!) has to say about Taiyaki.
I personally conclude that the only reason the taiyaki shop went bankrupt was because of bad management – Taiyaki is soooooo much better than pudding.
What about this week’s stuck song?
Hydrogen Sea – Beating Heart (Always thankful to Suicide Sheep for the music he introduces us to)
Featured Image: From 茶庭 然花抄院(Zenkashoin) @Hikarie Mall in Shibuya. (Top) Roasted tea float (with agar, ice cream and stewed sweet japanese chestnut, (Bottom) Maccha chocolate terrine (from Uji, Kyoto)
Q: What’s an adult’s sweet taste?
Hey there! I moved to Japan about a week ago and everything is SUPER different here! The first big difference: food! As a European, the first time I went to the super market, I didn’t know what to buy, because I didn’t know what all these products were! However, I am getting used to it and I am starting to like japanese food, even though up until now I’ve only tried cheap dishes from the school cafeteria or the convenience store. Of course I have many pictures of landscapes etc. but food has priority. Enjoy the foodporn!
P.S. I would just like to boast about the univ. internet connection. ABSOLUTELY no comparison with my home country.
Yesterday was sewing day. Recently, I bought this wonderful woolen cardigan. One problem: it had a hoodie – and the hoodie had no ‘cool’ inside texture or pattern. So, I removed the hoodie, replaced it with a blue ribbon and attached a button (there weren’t any – such a shame, ’cause they are really helpful) to the neck part to keep the smiley shape in place. I like it better now!
Such a discrete clasp
Detailed view of the button and bight
After a month and a half of involuntary fasting – I HATED EVERY MINUTE OF IT – I begun eating again. First choice ? Junk food. Here are some pictures of food. No specific reason. Food is nice and I like to see nice stuff.
Tsiknopempti is the best day: Meat-eating day!
Preparation: Chopped veggies and agavita tequila
Completion: Pennes with peppers, mushrooms, tomato, chilly seasoning and salty mizithra cheese
Burger’s w white Jack Daniel’s sauce @ Bullhouse in Peristeri
Until next time! (Sketching and drinking on a late night evening)