Just after the cherry blossoms, at the end of March, the bamboo shoots start sprouting in April; first along the southern part of Japan, slowly trailing north chasing the signs of summer. I must be honest and admit… I am a bamboo fanatic, not just zest but more in close lines to be called ‘an addict’. The blog which will follow in a couple of series will be about ‘bamboo (shoot) cooking’ which I, personally would like to preserve in my own cooking and blog records, as to also refresh my memory come very vague and fuzzy come next season, one year from now. Fresh bamboo shoots are in season from April to May in Japan. For viewers who have not prepared fresh bamboo, the most common method of when preparing fresh bamboo is : Washed and peel the coarse outer skin In a large pan, boil for approximately 40~50 minutes adding ‘nuka’ – rice bran to remove the bitterness in the vegetable Let it simmer down to cool Next day….peel the outer skin and …
Foods prepared to go…are not easy. Perhaps I am over-sensitive and particular as to making and serving food; but not in this case as my daughter has been suffering from severe ‘migraine headache’, since late fall-early winter. The progressive winter cold certainly does not help alleviate her headache, daily housework and mothering a 3 year old child has become quite difficult for the past few months. To help her, I’ve been catering some ‘most common washoku foods-to-go’, sustaining a healthy balance diet for a 3 year old growing child. Although the prepared foods are far from being photogenic, ready to go in microwave proof Tupperware but hope will provide some insight to our (common) daily Japanese foods. Stewed potatoes with beef and konjac (Niku Jyaga), is a very common Japanese side dish, which we call ‘osozai’. All the ingredients are simmered in soy sauce flavored dashi. Konjac is probably an typical Japanese ingredient-a rubbery noodle like food made from Konjac yam, very low calorie known to cleanse the stomach and intestines. Stewed satuma age and …
Spring seems just around the corner. Early morning walk with the our little doggie becomes warmer as days pass, turning to a daily check up on the ‘cherry blossoms’ which grow along the riverbed. Day by day, one by one, each buds start to revive from hibernation, some at the verge to blossom, some yet asleep. Few more warm days will awaken everyone single bud, the entire tree transforming into to fully flowered tree, the cheery blossom tree, a one of a kind. Spring brings about seasonal foods – speciality such as the ‘wild vegetables’, ‘firefly squid’, ‘sea clams’, etc.etc. to our Japanese food table, most all of spring foods come with either a strong scent or a strong energy, a strength of life. Some below to see the authenticity of ‘Spring’ Japanese food. 春まじか。 早朝のワンコの散歩も日に日に暖かくなり、神田川沿いの散歩道は桜の開花チェックに変わっていきます。東京では開花宣言が確か23日に出されましたがここ家の周辺ではまだつぼみは堅く、まだ一週間は桜を楽しめそうな年になりそうです。桜の種類によっては開花している木もありますがソメイヨシノはまだ。地面に近いつぼみや幹のつぼみは開花をしていますが川にしだれる枝はまだ。楽しみです。 さて、春に入ると食材が変わってきました。 フキのとう、セリ、、「苦み」の多い食材が増えてきます。冬の食材から少し彩りがもどり春の食材を少しずつ楽しんでいます。 春に入ってからの我が家の食卓です。 Mix Rice with Firefly Squid and Seri (Japanese Parsley) | ほたるイカとセリの炊き込みご飯 Seafood Paella | パエリア (Linked to Recipe) a Typical Japanese Household Dinner 追伸 : ちなみにニシンは今年は豊作の年らしいです。北海道で昔のように水揚げされているらい。 保存 保存
This ceremony was first posted last year for our very first grandchild and time has come for our second grandchild, now turned over 100 days in which to celebrate her first taste of food – a traditional Japanese ritual called ‘okuisome’.
This post may come as a ‘shocking post’ but to emphasize that it is NOT a PET TURTLE as to being one of the fine delicacies in our eastern part of the world, the soft-shelled turtle (which we call it suppon in Japanese) considered equivalent to medicine from ancient Chinese history.
Rice cakes – we call it ‘mochi’ is eaten most everywhere in Japan at New Years.
Winter Osouzai (Washoku – Japanese Dishes) Since my daughter is yet busy mothering her first child born early November, the constant attention night and day is waring her out with sleepless nights.
My encounter with this hot pot dish was at Bangkok, 2 years ago; when we visited Bangkok and Samui Island for a short summer vacation. It was served at a concierge recommended Thai restaurant called ‘Tongue Thai Restaurant in Bangkok’ .
It has been an extremely hot summer this year.