Vietnamese Restaurants: Annam (revisited)

Pa in seo/Japanese okonomiyaki!

Annam is probably not only the only authentic Vietnamese restaurant in Shizuoka Prefecture, but is definitely in a clss of its own.
If I listened to the Missus we would visit the place every week!LOl
Antway, the other day my best friedn, who happens to be Irish, and his Jpanese wife came to visit us after a lapse of two years.
We just couldn’t find a better reason to visit our favourite South Asian restaurant!

Here is what we ordered:

The Vietnamese have brewed beer for a long time and thier 333 is as good as any!

Artistic and very light raw spring rolls with shrimps.

Healthy green papaya and shrimp salad.

Stir-fried chicken and deep-fried rice cakes.

French influence in the steamed French bread with shrimp and peanuts topping.

As the beer and the sake (from Shizauok) has disappeared quickly, we chose a honest and reliable bottle of French Cotes du Rhone from Annam’s very decent wine list.

Home-made Vietnamese ham as a complimentary dish!

Stir-fried chicken and deep-fried imperial rolls with cold rice noodles salad.

Very light stir-fried vegetables in sweet and sour sauce.

Pa in seo/Vietnamese okonomiyaki, the specialty of the restaurant.
Enormous but as light as a feather and filled with loads of beansprouts!

No we did not have dessert, but pho soup instead!

Can’t wait for the next visit!

Shizuoka City, Aoi-Ku, Tenmacho, 17-9
Tel.: 054-2502266
Fax: 054-2502323
Lunch: 11:30~14:30
Dinner: 17:00~22:00 (last orders: 21:30)
Closed on Mondays and day after National Holidays
Homepage
Credit cards OK

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Comestilblog, Greedy Girl, Bouchon For 2, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet, Warren Bobrow, 5 Star Foodie, Frank Fariello, Oyster Culture, Warren Bobrow, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Chuck Eats, Alchemist Chef, Ochikeron, Mrs. Lavendula, The Gipsy Chef

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Robert Yellin’s Newsletter: Japanese Pottery by Fujioka Shuhei

Greetings from Mishima,

We hope this finds all well and enjoying the wonders of autumn
(here in the northern hemisphere).

As the rain falls here for the past few days, I know magical snow is falling on Mt.Fuji, what a wonder to see when rain stops and the clouds part; I hope to share that wondrous sight in a future online listing! Stay tuned, yet for now it’s Iga time.

We are excited to announce and share previews of our third Fujioka Shuhei exhibition. Iga ceramic artist Fujioka Shuhei (b.1947) possesses the power to make mountains out of clay. He then fires his bold creations in an anagama to ‘fire-brush’ on mossy green, blue and gray natural ash glazes.

These captivating colors contrast and highlight the rich clay flavor and hi-iro (fire color) that Iga is world-renowned for, as well as the koge scorch colors (Iga has three famous keshiki-landscapes of hi-iro, koge and bidoro-glass). Iga is one of those magical medieval styles that speaks volumes of the Zen-inspired ways that are to be found within Tea-pottery; Fujioka understands this. His heart is pure and he loves the earth at his feet, whether it is for his clay works, or the vegetables he grows in the fields. Like potters of old, he too is a farmer and listens to the teachings that nature whispers in his ears. In a nutshell, after graduating college Fujioka went to work for a production kiln in Seto. Yet upon seeing a Ko-Iga piece, he then knew there was no other style for him. He apprenticed with Tanimoto Kosei before establishing his own kiln in 1975.

He’s had countless solo exhibitions throughout Japan and has been featured in numerous publications. Fujioka is to Iga what Harada and Kakurezaki are to Bizen, except without all the awards. He’s a soft-spoken man, humble and deep; all these qualities are in his work as well as an awe-inspiring feel of the power of nature. Fujioka fires a small kiln for three
days and if he gets a one-third success rate for any kiln he feels it’s been a success. The high loss rate is one reason we find so few Iga potters, it’s almost loony–as Fujioka himself says—to work in Iga with all its hurdles and failures. Yet the successes are clay jewels, as you’ll see for yourself in the following links. We are extremely pleased to offer the world a chance to see Fujioka’s Iga world online or here at our Mishima gallery until December 10th.

The exhibition will go online for public viewing on Tuesday of next week, for those who have signed our guest book please see the following hidden preview links. Only minimal details are noted and any extra information or additional photos will gladly be sent upon request. We hope you enjoy the world of one of Iga’s most important ceramic artists today, Fujioka Shuhei:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23

Also, our gallery was very honored to be the feature in arecent Japan Times article, you can access that here:
http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/fl20091114a1.html

Kampai and all the best from Japan.

Cordially,

Robert Yellin
HOMEPAGE

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
5 Star Foodie
Think Twice
Frank Fariello

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Organic Delights in Kamakura

Kamakura beach and surfers

Kamakura in Kanagawa Prefecture is an internationally celebrated tourist post.

Unfortunately for all the beauty of the city, its mountains, old buildings, ancient culture and striking sea shore, the great majority of its restaurants and cafes are little more than traps for the crowds of tourists and surfers.

The perfect fried organic potatoes with anchovy and garlic savoury garnish at Magokoro!

But some locals belatedly realized that things had to change or else.
Heaps of organic food are grown or raised in Kamakura and its neighbourhood.
Just add to that the marine produce of the Pacific Ocean and you have the ideal combination to satisfy all tastes and priorities, be they omnivore, vegetarian or even vegan.

The same locals formed their own association, The Japan Vegetarian Society, in 1993 to help their fellow citizens and newcomers alike to discover restaurants, cafes and shops in accordance with their favourite food styles.

Since then they have grown into a small but extremely active non profit organization not only with their own blog/website but also a semi bilingual free pamphlet with a guide and map to no less than 51 establishments!

Blog address (Japanese)
Call 0467-25-2668 if you cannot find the map.

Organic Vegetables and fish (mackerel) Lunch tray at Magokoro

The pamphlet/map is a real little treasure as it features not only restaurants, cafes, confectioneries, fair trade goods shops, grocery stores but even “earth-conscious (ecological) shops”, temples, body-care-shop, bicycle rental shops, hiking courses, temples, cooking schools and tourist information desks!

Each establishment is represented with at least one picture with letters indicating whether it serves or sells vegan, vegetarian food. It also clearly explains through the same simple lettering system if the food contains seafood, seafood seasoning, dairy products, eggs or even if it does contain such produce as leek, Chinese chive (nira) Japanese shallot (Rakkyo), onion or garlic!

It goes as far as counseling people to double-check in some cases!
The whole literally backed up by an easy English/Japanese lexicon for tourists with special gastronomic priorities on the other side of the pamphlet!

The same very ecology-conscious association has initiated an unusual association of shops with their own currency: Beach Money and Beach Money Shops!

The all-organic vegetables lunch tray at Magokoro

One outstanding establishment among this unforeseen wealth is a café/restaurant located right in front of the main beach where surfers and wind-surfers practice their sport all year round: Magokoro/麻心!

Founded in 2001, it has become the reference to organic (for all tastes!) food in the city of Kamakura.
For lunch you can choose among trays of organic food containing only vegetables, or a combination of the same and meat or fish. They will make sure not to include any dairy products, egg or mayonnaise for vegans upon request.
Vegetarians and omnivores will want to sample the restaurant organic creations featuring pizzas, curry dishes, macrobiotic cakes, organic coffees and teas, hemp beer according to the seasons and times of the year.
Keep in mind you might have to wait as it is extremely popular!

In the afternoon it will be easier to enjoy the sea view from their bay window counter seats or relax surrounded by a décor all of wood, painted walls and charming artistic bric-a-brac, the more for it as the whole establishment is non-smoking!

Live music and events are organized in the evenings (also in daytime occasionally), including Colour Therapy Sessions.
Better check in advance!

The Organic & Hemp Style Café & Bar, Magokoro
2-8-11, Hase, Kamakura, 248-0016 (within walking distance fromHase Station)
Tel. & Fax: 0467-25-1414
Homepage (Japanese, but including pics of their food!)

Kamakura Welcome Guide Association
Tel.: 0467-22-3516
Homepage (English, French, Japanese, Chinese plus services provided in Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian)

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Comestilblog, Greedy Girl, Bouchon For 2, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet, Warren Bobrow, 5 Star Foodie, Frank Fariello, Oyster Culture

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi, <a

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Ramen with Komatsuna and Minced Meat

All ramen lovers, please check Ramendo’s great Ramen Poll!

Ramen make for excellently balanced meals when properly combined with green vegetables and meat.
Here is a simple recipe combining ramen with minced pork and bee and komatsu leaves:

Ramen with Komatsuna and Minced Meat!

Komatsuna (Brassica rapa var. perviridis or var. komatsuna, コマツナ/小松菜、冬菜、鶯菜) is a type of leaf vegetable. It is a variant of the same species as the common turnip. It is grown in Japan, Taiwan and Korea. It is also known as Japanese Mustard Spinach and can be stir-fried, pickled, boiled and added to soups or used fresh in salads. It is an excellent source of calcium. It is also used for fodder in some Asian countries. The leaves of komatsuna can be eaten at any stage of growth. In a mature plant they are dark green with slender light green stalks, around 30 cm long and 18 cm wide. It is most often grown in the spring and autumn, as it cannot endure extreme heat or cold for more than a short time.

INGREDIENTS: For 2 persons

-Non-fry instant ramen (sold with shoyu/soy sauce taste stock soup powder): 2 packs
-Minced meat (half beef, half pork. Can be replaced with chicken): 180 g
-Komatsuna (or spinach): 1 bouquet (as much as you want, actually!)
-Ginger: 1 fresh piece (2×2 cm)
-Garlic (little smell variety if you can find it): 1 large clove
-Sesame oil: 1 teaspoon
-Chicken Bouillon powder (to taste): 1 cube~ crushed into powder

-Cornstarch: to taste (depends on how thick you like your soup)
-Water: 50 ml

RECIPE:

-Cut the komatsuna/spinach into 2 or 3 easy to eat lengths. Chop the ginger fine. Slice the garlic.

-Mix the cornstarch with a water in small cup (don’t forget to stir it again before using it!)

-Prepare the soup by heating water added with the soup bought together with the instant ramen.

-Boil the ramen in salted water to the consistence of your liking.

-While the ramen are boiling, In a frypan fry the ginger and garlic in sesame oil over a small fire so as to bring out flavour.

-Once the aroma of the fried chopped condiments come out add the minced meat and fry over a medium high fire.

-Once the meat is well cooked, throw in the komatusna, lower stems irst for a few seconds and then all the rest, over a strong fire.

-Add the chicken bouillon powder and mix well.

-Reduce the fire to low. sprinkle over with all the starch mixed with water. Turn the fire to high and stir until the sauce around the meat and veg has thickened to your liking. Switch off fire.

-In a bowl (two bowls for 2 in this case), drop the boiled and drained ramen. Cover with soup and top with fried komatsuna and minced meat.

Simple!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Comestilblog, Greedy Girl, Bouchon For 2, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet, Warren Bobrow, 5 Star Foodie, Frank Fariello, Oyster Culture
href=”http://ramendo.wordpress.com/”>Ramendo, Ramendo

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Non-Wheat Kabosu Cupcakes

Here is a tasty Japanese inspired cupcake for wheat allergics!

Non-wheat kabosu cupcakes!

Kabosu (カボス or 臭橙) is a juicy green citrus fruit (Latin name: Citrus sphaerocarpa) closely related to the yuzu/Japanese lime with the sharpness of lemon, used instead of vinegar in some Japanese dishes. It grows on a flowering plant with sharp thorns, and the fruit is harvested when still green but ripens to yellow. Kabosu was brought over from China in the Edo Period and became a popular fruit in Japan. It is produced in most areas of Ōita Prefecture (Kyushu Island) but particularly in Taketa and Usuki. The actual fruit is regarded as a delicacy in other parts of Japan, as it is often expensive outside of Ōita Prefecture. It improves the taste of many dishes, especially baked fish, sashimi and hot pot dishes.

INGREDIENTS: for 6~7 cupcakes

-Kabosu 1 (if notavailable, use lime, yuzu or lemon or your choice!)
-Eggs: 2
-Rice powder: 80 g
-Sugar: 50 g
-Butter: 50 g
-Sugar for icing

RECIPE:

-Cut out six thin slices from the kabosu/lime. Press the juice out of the rest (15 ml). Cut the skin into thin strips (later cut them again into small pieces according to your preference).

-Melt the butter inside a microwave oven (500~600W) for 40~50 seconds. Keep aside.
Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

-In a bowl beat the eggs with half of the sugar over a bain-marie (a larger bowl containing hot water (about 60 degrees Celsius). When smooth add the rest of the sugar.

-When the mixture has reached a temperature equivalent to a human body temperature take bowl off the bain-marie. Keep beating until the mixture attains a whitish colour. Then beat at low speed for 3 more minutes.

-Add the rice powder and fold/mix it in with a spatula.

-Add melted butter, Kabosu/lime juice and chopped Kabosu/lime skin/zest. Mix them in gently.

-Grease mold with butter or olive oil if you use a mold instead of cupcake paper cups. Fill in mold/cups with mixture.

-Place one slice of Kabosu/lime on top of each cake. Sprinkle sugar over the top.
Bake in oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 minute.

-Take out and let cool down completely before taking cakes out of their molds.

-If you do not serve them immediately, wrap them in cellophane paper and preserve them inside fridge.

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, One Frugal Foodie, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet

——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Tofu Pound Cake

Tofu has the great quality that it makes all things lighter, especially cakes.
Have you ever thought of making a pound cake with it (with a twist added!)?

Tofu Pound Cake!

INGREDIENTS: For a cake 16.5 cm long and a square cut of 7 cm sides

-Egg whites: 2
-Egg yolks: 2
-Sugar: 30 g
-Tofu (after taking some of its water off): 120 g
-Honey (liquid): 2 tablespoons
-All-purpose flour: 50 g
-Baking powder: half a teaspoon
-Soy sauce: 1 teaspoon
-Mirin/sweet sake: 1 tablespoon
-Milk: 2 tablespoons

RECIPE:

-Mix flour and baking powder well.
-Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius

-In a bowl drop the egg whites with half of the sugar. Beat until solid. Beat 30 more times with a whisk.

-In a separate bowl drop in the tofu, rest of the sugar and egg yolks. Beat with a whisker until smooth. Do not mix too much!

-Add honey, soy sauce, mirin and milk in that order to the egg yols mixture and mix in one each at a time.

-Add and mix in the flour and baking powder mixture little by little with a spatula.

-Add the meringue (beaten egg whites) by folding them in with a spatula in 2 or three sessions.

-Line the mold with baking paper and pour in the whole mixture.
Bake for 40 minutes (the picture above shows the cake baked after 10 minutes)

-Leave the cake inside the oven for 10 more minutes after the oven has switched off after the 40 minutes of cooking. Open the oven, but leave the cake inside for an extra 10 minutes before taking it out.

-Let cool down completely.
Leave inside the fridge for half a day before serving.

NOTE:

You can replace the soy sauce and mirin with cocoa powder (1 tablespoon)!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, One Frugal Foodie, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet

——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Ramen: Simple Recipe with Beansprouts, Butter and Miso!

The Basic and Complete Ramen Recipe, I must admit, was complicated and a bit hard for friends to follow, but ramen can also be made simple and tasty.
Here is an example:
Ramen with beansprouts, butter and miso!

INGREDIENTS: For 2 servings

-Beansprouts (“moyashi”/もやし): one pack or a very large handful. Fresh, please!
-Onion: one half
-Bacon: 2 rashers
-Ramen: enough for 2 persons
-Butter: 1 tablespoon
-Miso: to taste

RECIPE:

-While you boil the ramen, cut the onion and bacon into thin slices and fry. Boil some very lightly salted water for the soup (if you have bought the ramen with their soup, add it to the water, although it might become a bit heavy)

After the onion have become translucent and started taking in the bacon juices throw in the beansprouts and butter. Add just enough soup water as to obtain a thick enough soup. Add miso and stir.

In a bowl drop the boiled and drained ramen and top it with the beansprouts, bacon and onion soup!
Easy, isn’t it?

NOTE:
If you wish to make your ramen spicy add spices and chili when you fry the onion and bacon.
Don’t be afraid of using a lot of beansprouts (and other thinly cut veg if you wish)!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Comestilblog, Greedy Girl, Bouchon For 2, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet, Warren Bobrow, 5 Star Foodie, Frank Fariello, Oyster Culture, Ramendo

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Bryan Baird’s Newsletter (2009/11/16)

Baird Beer & Taproom Events Bulletin
bryan-sayuri.gif

Dear Taproom Friend & Baird Beer Enthusiast:

After several months of conditioning, the 2009 version of Yabai-Yabai Strong Scotch Ale is at last ready for release. The draught version will be pouring from our Taproom taps as well as the taps of other Baird Beer retailing pubs and restaurants beginning Thursday, November 19. 633 ml bottles will be available for purchase beginning the same day at fine craft beer retailing liquor stores throughout Japan.

Yabai-Yabai Strong Scotch Ale (ABV 7.7%):

Scotland, an historically important center of beer brewing, has a cool climate that favors cultivation of the hardy barley plant. Scottish Ales, thus, tend to feature the rich and robust flavor of malted barley. Baird Yabai-Yabai Strong Scotch Ale is, in a word, opulent! The color is a deep mahogany brown and the head is dense, creamy and tan. The aroma is one of soft fruit esters and warm fusel alcohols. The body is chewy and the flavor exhibits notes of molasses, caramel apples, rum cake and pit fruit. One hearty pint is enough to take the bite out of the late autumn chill. Two pints will leave you toasty, and blissfully, warm. Three pints and…. YABAI!

Beers for Books Charity Event @ Numazu Fishmarket Taproom (Sunday, November 22):

The Numazu Fishmarket Taproom is joining hands with the Beers for Books organization (www.beersforbooks.org) to raise money for the Room to Read charity which purchases books for poverty-stricken kids in third world countries. All day long on Sunday, November 22, the Fishmarket Taproom will donate 100 yen per Baird Beer pint sold (and 10% of revenue generated from other drink sales) to the Room to Read charity. In conjunction, the Baird Brewery will be conducting charity-supporting brewery tours for interested attendees at 1:00, 3:00 and 5:00 pm. A charity beer quiz and guess the # of hops in the Jar contest also will be held and prizes awarded. We even are trying to organize a catch the biggest fish competition hopefully to be held in the fish market inner harbor across from the Taproom. This is a terrific cause and the event promises to be as enjoyable as it is constructive. Please plan on joining us.

Cheers!

Bryan Baird
Baird Brewing Company
Numazu, Japan
HOMEPAGE


The Japan Blog List

———————————
Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Ramen: A Basic Complete Recipe

The following ramen recipe is complete but basic and can be improved on with many variations and other ingredients. It originally comes from Saitama prefecture, just morth of Tokyo.

INGREDIENTS: For 14~15 servings

SOUP/STOCK
-Pork bone: 1~2
-Pig feet/trotter: 1
-Chicken frame/chicken carcass: 1 whole chicken
-Pork belly (for chashu): 1.3 kg
-Onion, carrot, potato: 1/2 of each
-Cabbage: 1/8
-Leeks (green part): 2
-Figs: 2
-Fresh ginger root: 3 slices
-Garlic: 1 whole
-Chili pepper: 1 whole

JAPANESE BASE SOUP/STOCK:
-Water: 2.5 liters
-Konbu/dry seaweed: 6
-Iriko (small dry fish): 50g
-Dried shiitake mushroom: 2
-Kongoukezuribushi or Niboshi dashi/dry sardines shavings for stock: 1 pack

CHASHU/CHAR SIU SAUCE
-Water: 1000 ml
-Soy sauce: 500 ml
-Japanese sake: 200 ml
-Mirin/Sweet sake: 50 ml
-Sugar: 110 g
-Fresh ginger and garlic: 2 each
-Chicken breasts: 2 (optional)

SHOYU DARE/SOY SAUCE SAUCE:
-Japanese base stock soup: 300 ml
-Konbu/dried shiitake: 1 each
-Japanese sake: 100 ml
-Mirin/sweet sake: 1 tablespoon
-Iriko/small dry fish: 30 g
-Kongoukezuribushi or Niboshi dashi/dry sardines shavings for stock: 80 g
-Soy sauce: 500 ml
-Salt: 1 tablespoon
-Hana katsuo/large bonito shavings: 150 g
-Chashu/Char siu sauce: 150 ml

MEN/NOODLES:
-Bread flour: 1 kg
-Cookie flour: 500 g
-Salt: 23 g
-Eggs: 11~12/580 g
-Butter: 90g

MENMA/ (メンマ or 麺麻 or 麺碼), a Japanese condiment made from lactate-fermented bamboo shoots
-Packed boiled menma: 1 kg
-Sesame oil: 1~2 tablespoons
-Chili pepper: 1 whole
-Mirin/sweet sake: 2 tablespoons
-Japanese sake: 2 tablespoons
-Soy sauce: 6 tablespoons
-Chashyu/Char siu soup: 4 tablespoons

OTHERS:
-Boiled egg, chopped leeks, nori seaweed, etc.

RECIPE:

Konbu and dashi sold in Japanese supermarkets.

Packed boiled menma sold in Jpanese supermarkets.

FIRST DAY:

Keep in mind that such ramen take two day to prepare!

JAPANESE STOCK:
Pour all the ingredients for the Japanese soup stock in a large bowl and let rest a whole night (inside the fridge in summer!)

Wash the blood off the chicken carcass and pork bones with clear cold water.
Break the pork bones in two.

Holding the pork feet with tongs, burn the hair away over a gas flame.
Clean with clear cold water.

Roll thepork belly cut with the thinner part inside. Secure it by binding it tightly in cooking rope/thread. Do the same with the chicken breast if you use them.

Wash vegetables and cut roughly.
Do not peel them!

In a large enough (7~10 l) pot, pour plenty of water and boil the pork bones inside over a strong fire.
Skim off the water regularly of all unwanted matters.

When unwanted matters have stopped appearing, add chicken carcass, pork belly, pig feet/trotters and boil over a medium high fire, skimming off all unwanted matters regularly until they stop appearing.

Add vegetables and seasoning and simmer over a medium high fire for 2 hours.
Switch off fire.

Chashyu/Char siu
Take out pork abelly (and chicken if used) out of the pot and simmer it in the Chashyu/Char siu sauce for 2 hours.

———-

SECOND DAY

SHOYU DARE/SOY SAUCE SOUP
Take out all solid ingredients out of the Japanese base soup stock pan.
Take 300 ml out of it into a separate bowl.
Add the other ingredients (-Konbu, dried shiitake, Japanese sake, Mirin/sweet sake, iriko/small dry fish, Kongoukezuribushi or Niboshi dashi/dry sardines shavings for stock, Soy sauce, Salt, Hana katsuo/large bonito shavings) and 150 ml of the Chashyu/Char siu sauce.

SOUP
Bring the soup left after cooking the chashyu/Cahar siu to boil.
Discard vegetables.

Add the rest of the Japanese base soup stock and cook over a low fire for 2 hours. This will be your basic soup.

NOODLES

Prepare noodles bymixin the ingredients as you would do with pasta.
Cut the noodles with a pasta machine to 2×2 mm and let rest inside fridge.

MENMA

Bring water to boil in a pot.
Boil the menma for a little while.
Drain completely.

Pour the sesame oil in a frying pan. Lightly fry menma and chili pepper. Add other ingredients. Keep frying until juices have reduced to about 2 tablespoons. Transfer into a bowl. Let cool completely. Keep in fridge.

The proportions for the soup and shoyu dare should be of 360~400 ml of soup for 35~50 ml of shoyu dare. Adjust to taste.

After having chilled the chashyu/char siu well cut ino slices of the thickness of your preference.
Chop the leeks.

Heat large serving bowl in hot water.
Boil the noodles in a large pot for 4~5 minutes.

While you boil the noodles, throw hot water out of the serving bowl.
Pour shoyu dare then the soup.
Drain the noodles and drop them in the soup.
Place chashyu/char siu, boiled eggs, chopped leeks and nori on top and serve!

NOTE:

The noodles according to this recipe should have enough “bite” to them while blending well with the soup!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Comestilblog, Greedy Girl, Bouchon For 2, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet, Warren Bobrow, 5 Star Foodie, Frank Fariello, Ramendo

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Ramen: The Basics

Shoyu-Ramen/Ramen with soy sauce

Ramen (ラーメン, らーめん, 拉麺) is a Japanese noodle dish that originated in China. It is served in a meat- or fish-based broth, often flavored with soy sauce or miso, and uses toppings such as sliced pork (チャーシュー, chāshū), dried seaweed (海苔, nori), kamaboko (Fish paste), green onions and even corn. Almost every locality or prefecture in Japan has its own variation of ramen, from the tonkotsu (pork bone stock) ramen of Kyūshū to the miso (fermented bean paste) ramen of Hokkaidō.

Tonkotsu Ramen/Pork Bone Stock Soup

Though of Chinese origin, it is unclear when ramen was introduced to Japan. Even the etymology of the word ramen is a topic of debate. One hypothesis is that ramen is the Japanese pronunciation of the Chinese: 拉麺 (la mian), meaning “hand-pulled noodles.” A second hypothesis proposes 老麺 (laomian, “old noodles”) as the original form, while another states that ramen was initially 鹵麺 (lǔmiàn), “noodles cooked in a thick, starchy sauce”. A fourth hypothesis is 撈麵 (lāomiàn, “lo mein”): 撈 means to “dredge up” and refers to the method of cooking these noodles by immersing them in boiling water before dredging them up with a wire basket.

Butter Corn ramen in Hokkaido

Until the 1950s, ramen was called shina soba (支那そば, literally “Chinese soba”) but today chūka soba (中華そば, also meaning “Chinese soba”) is more common. Ramen should not confused with Japanese soba or buckwheat noodles.
By 1900, restaurants serving Chinese cuisine from Canton and Shanghai offered a simple ramen dish of noodles (cut rather than hand pulled), a few toppings, and a broth flavored with salt and pork bones.

Hakata-style ramen (Northern Kyushu)

Many Chinese also pulled portable food stalls, selling ramen and gyōza dumplings to workers. By the mid 1900s, these stalls used a type of a musical horn called a charumera (チャルメラ, from the Portuguese charamela) to advertise their presence, a practice some vendors still retain via a loudspeaker and a looped recording. By the early Shōwa period (1030~), ramen had become a popular dish when eating out.

Hiyashi ramen/cold ramen

After World War II, cheap flour imported from the U.S. swept the Japanese market. At the same time, millions of Japanese troops had returned from China and continental East Asia. Many of these returnees had become familiar with Chinese cuisine and subsequently set up Chinese restaurants across Japan. Eating ramen, while popular, was still a special occasion that required going out.

In 1958, instant noodles were invented by the late Momofuku Ando, the Taiwanese-Japanese founder and chairman of Nissin Foods. Named the greatest Japanese invention of the 20th century in a Japanese poll, instant ramen allowed anyone to make this dish simply by adding boiling water.

Miso ramen/ramen with fermented bean paste

Beginning in the 1980s, ramen became a Japanese cultural icon and was studied from many perspectives. At the same time, local varieties of ramen were hitting the national market and could even be ordered by their regional names. A ramen museum opened in Yokohama in 1994.

Tantanmen sryle ramen.

A wide variety of ramen exists in Japan, with geographical and vendor-specific differences even in varieties that share the same name. Ramen can be broadly categorized by its two main ingredients: noodles and soup.

Noodles

Fresh ramen: Most noodles are made from five basic ingredients: wheat flour, salt, water, and kansui which is essentially a type of alkaline mineral water. Originally, kansui was named after the water from Inner Mongolia’s Lake Kan which contained large amounts of minerals and was said to be perfect for making these noodles. Making noodles with kansui lends them a yellowish hue as well as a firm texture. Eggs may also be substituted for kansui.

Ramen comes in various shapes and lengths. They may be fat, thin, or even ribbon-like, as well as straight or wrinkled.

Tokyo-style ramen

Soup

Ramen vending machine: Ramen soup is generally made from stock based on chicken or pork, combined with a variety of ingredients such as kombu (kelp), katsuobushi (skipjack tuna flakes), niboshi (dried baby sardines), beef bones, shiitake, and onions, and then flavored with salt, miso, or soy sauce.

The resulting combination is generally divided into four categories (although new and original variations often make this categorisation less clear-cut):

Shio (“salt”) ramen
Shōyu (soy sauce) ramen
Tonkotsu (“pork bone”) ramen
Miso (fernented beans paste) ramen.

While standard versions of ramen are available throughout Japan for the last 100 years, the last few decades have shown a proliferation of regional variations. Some of these which have gone on to national prominence are:

Sapporo, where ramen are topped with sweetcorn, butter, beansprouts, finely chopped pork, and garlic, and sometimes local seafood such as scallop, squid, and crab.

Kitakata ramen in northern Honshū is known for its rather thick, flat, curly noodles served in a pork-and-niboshi broth.

What is known as Tokyo style ramen consists of slightly thin, curly noodles served in a soy-flavoured chicken broth. Standard toppings on top of chopped scallion, menma, and sliced pork are kamaboko, egg, nori, and spinach. Ikebukuro, Ogikubo and Ebisu are three areas in Tokyo known for their ramen.

Ie-kei (家系) ramen is from Yokohama and consists of thick, straight-ish noodles served in a soy-pork broth.

Hakata-men ramen originate from Hakata district of Fukuoka city. It has a rich, milky, pork-bone tonkotsu broth and rather thin, non-curly and resilient noodles. Often, distinctive toppings such as beni shoga (pickled ginger), sesame seeds, and pickled greens are left on tables for customers to serve themselves.

NOTE:
Many Japanese people also believe that ramen soup contains a high amount of fat and also that pre-fried fat from the noodles seeps into the soup. However, a typical serving of ramen, even when drinking all of the soup, has less food energy than a fast-food menu consisting of a hamburger, soda, and fries!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter, Comestilblog, Greedy Girl, Bouchon For 2, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles, Lexi, Culinary Musings, Eats and Everything, Bite Me New England, Heather Sweet, Warren Bobrow, 5 Star Foodie, Frank Fariello

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Baked Tofu Yoghurt Cake

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-1

Tofu and yoghurt are two very healthy ingredients that can be easily magicked into a cake for the delight o children and calories conscious adults:

Baked Tofu Yoghurt Cake!

INGREDIENTS: For an 18cm-diameter mold

-Plain yoghurst:500g
-Tofu (kinu tofu or soft tofu): 300 g
-Eggs: 2
-Sugar: 80 g
-Flour: 30 g
-Lemon juice: 1 tablespoon

RECIPE:

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-2

-Place a sieve over a bowl. Pour the yoghurt in. Let it drain naturally in the refrigerator for a day.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-3

-Place the tofu in a bowl (no need to cover it). Leave it in a microwave oven (500 W) for 3 minutes.
Place a sieve over a bowl. Pour the tofu inside the sieve. Let it drain naturally in the refrigerator for a day.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-4

-Next day, pre-heat oven to to 180 degrees Ceslius.
Throw the yoghurt and tofu water away.
Drop all the ingredients inside a food processor.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-5

-Blend until smooth. Switch off halfway and stir with a spatula to even up the mixture.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-6

-Pour the mixture inside a mold lined upwith cooking paper. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-7

-Take mold and cake out. Let it cool completely. Chill it inside the refrigerator together.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-8

-Take the cake out of of its mold only when it has chilled well.

TOFU-YOGHURT-CAKE-9

-Cut, serve and enjoy!
You can of course serve it with jam and other toppings.
You can also add liqueurs, fruits and so on to the recipe!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter
Zoy Zhang
Hungry Neko
Mangantayon
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Maison de Christina
Chrys Niles
Lexi
Culinary Musings
Eats and Everything
One Frugal Foodie
Bite Me New England
Heather Sweet

——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Tofu Lemon Cupcakes

TOFU-LEMON-CUPCAKE

Here is another simple Japanese style cupcake recipe made with tofu!

Tofu lemon Cupcakes!

INGREDIENTS: For about 16

-Tofu (kinu tofu or soft tofu): 100 g
-Sugar: 70 g
-Egg: 1
-Grated lemon pel: 1 lemon
-Flour: 160 g
-Baking powder: 1 and a half teaspoons
-Milk (or soy milk): 3 tablespoons
-Lemon juice: 1 tablespoon
-Olive oil: 2 tablespoons

RECIPE:

-Mix flour with baking powder. Mix grated lemon juice and milk in a separate bowl.

-In another bowl drop tofu and sugar. Mix thoroughly into a smooth paste. Add egg and mix well with a wisker.

-Add lemon juice and milk and mix well until smooth. But don’t mix too long!

-Mix in flour and baking powder with a spatula until the floury look has disappeared but don’t overmix.

-Fill cups (previously oiled) and bake at 190 degrees Celsius for 16 minutes. If the cups are really small 12 minutes should be enough.

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter
Zoy Zhang
Hungry Neko
Mangantayon
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Maison de Christina
Chrys Niles
Lexi
Culinary Musings
Eats and Everything
One Frugal Foodie
Bite Me New England
Heather Sweet

——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Matcha Bavarois Cake

MATCHA-CAKE-1

Matcha/抹茶, an ingredient readily available here in Shizuoka, opens the door to so many ideas as it can included in almost all cakes.
Moreover its green colour is an extra attraction that is difficult to resist!
Here is the recipe of a cake that marries western and eastern traditions!

Matcha Bavarois Cake!

INGREDIENTS: For a 21 cm diameter mold (can be adapted to square molds or individual molds)

-Sponge Cake:
Eggs: 3 large
Sugar: 70 g
All purpose flour: 40 g
Matcha powder: 1 tablespoon
Butter (unsalted): 25 g

-Bavarois:
Milk: 200ml
Fresh cream (vegetal): 200 ml
Egg whites: 3
Sugar: 50 g
Gelatin: 5 g
Matcha powder: 1 tablespoon
Water (to dissolve matcha powder): 5 tablespoons
Matcha liqueur (optional, but try and find it or replace with something else according to taste!): a little

-Decoration jelly (nappage):
Matcha powder: 2 tablespoons
Gelatin: 5 g
Sugar: 40 g
Water: 250 ml

Supplementary decoration (optional):
Chestnuts (cooked)
Black beans (cooked)
Candied mint leaves

RECIPE:

-Sponge Cake:
Separate the whites and yolks of the eggs, beat the yolks until thick and lemon colored, add the sugar gradually.
Mix matcha powder and sifted flour. Mix in butter by hand (with the tips of your fingers). Add egg yolks and sugar and mix well. Cut and fold in the stiffly beaten egg white.
Bake in an ungreased pan in a very moderate oven.
Bake until the cake is puffed, has lost its shine, and springs back when gently pressed.
Let cool completely and trim off to shape of the cake mold.
Line the cake mold with a layer of sponge cake.

-Bavarois:
Soften jelly in cold water or dissolve it depending on type.
Whisk the the egg whites thick and hard with sugar.
Bring the milk and fresh cream to boil.
Switch off fire.
Add matcha powder and matcha liqueur and mix well.
Let cool completely. Add and mix in gelatin.
Fold in egg whites.
Pour the bavarois over the sponge cake and leave in refrigerator overnight.

-Decoration jelly:
Soften gelatin or dissolve in a little water.
In a pan pour in water, matcha powder, sugar and heat to dissolve sugar. Switch off fire and add gelatin. Mix weel.
Wait until it has cooled off completely.
Take cake out of refigeraor and pour jelly all over.
Put back in refrigerator and leave it until it has properly settled.

Decorate further with chestnuts, candied mint leaves and black beans.

MATCHA-CAKE-3

That is how it would look once cut.

MATCHA-CAKE-2

The same as an individual cake!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter
Zoy Zhang
Hungry Neko
Mangantayon
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Maison de Christina
Chrys Niles
Lexi
Culinary Musings
Eats and Everything
One Frugal Foodie
Bite Me New England
Heather Sweet

——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Bryan Baird’s Newsletter (2009/11/11)

Baird Beer & Taproom Events Bulletin
bryan-sayuri.gif

Dear Taproom Friend & Baird Beer Enthusiast:

New Baird Beer Website Unveiling:

We are extremely pleased to announce the unveiling of our new Baird Beer website. The site has been designed by our friends at LINC Media who not only are first-class professionals but also top tier human beings. It is a privilege to work in cooperation with them.

The new site, in addition to crisply attractive design, simplicity of navigation and revamped content, sports several new features which include: individual Taproom blogs (including one in English for our Numazu Fishmarket Taproom), a photo gallery where you can view and also upload beer related pictures, and an E-shop where you can order Baird Beer and accessories delivered direct from the brewery (the E-shop will begin handling and processing orders sometime in early December). The site, including the E-shop, is fully bilingual. Please check us out at www.bairdbeer.com and let us know what you think.

Suruga Bay Imperial IPA Debuts as the Eighth Member of the Year-Round Baird Beer Lineup:

Imperial, or Double, IPAs are a stylistic creature of the American craft beer movement. Compared to a standard IPA, an Imperial IPA is higher in original gravity, higher in bittering units (IBUs), higher in alcohol strength and even more profound in the impact of its hop character (flavor, bitterness, and aroma). Origination of this monster IPA style is generally credited to Vinnie Cilurzo, the brilliant Brewmaster/Owner of Russian River Brewing (www.russianriverbrewing.com) in Northern California and former brewer at the now defunct Blind Pig Brewery. His wonderful beer, Pliny the Elder, is the best in this genre that we have ever tasted and it has served as our muse in the creation of Suruga Bay Imperial IPA.

Suruga Bay Imperial IPA (ABV 7.5%; IBU 90):

The first key to a great Double IPA is dryness of character despite the high original gravity. This is accomplished, foremost, through high attenuation by the yeast during fermentation. We aim for an apparent attenuation around 85% which yields relative dryness and alcohol strength. The second key is a fantastic and powerful hop aroma. This we achieve by dry hopping Suruga Bay Imperial IPA with several varieties of pungently strong American hops. We conduct this dry hopping not once but twice, in two separate tanks. Then, at packaging, to ensue a vigorous secondary fermentation and natural carbonation, we krauesen Suruga Bay with a percentage of peak fermentation beer from a different batch.

Suruga Bay Imperial IPA is a wickedly compelling flavor experience. Its hop character is as rich as Japan’s Suruga Bay is deep (it is Japan’s deepest bay and Baird Brewing is located on its inner shore). The greatness of Suruga Bay Imperial IPA resides in a supreme drinkability that pervades in spite of the potency.

Great pubs and restaurants (including all of our Taprooms), as well as fine craft beer retailing liquor shops, all over Japan are now carrying Suruga Bay Imperial IPA. The bottles for this first batch are of the large 633 ml kind but subsequent batches will be bottled in our standard 360 ml size.

Cheers!

Bryan Baird
Baird Brewing Company
Numazu, Japan
HOMEPAGE


The Japan Blog List

———————————
Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Sweet Potato Cupcakes

SWEET-POTATO-CUPCAKES

I need no say how cupcakes are popular all over the world.
That is the main reason why I from now and then feature a cupcake recipe.
Japanese-style cupcakes seem to be still new. They naturally come with different ingredients. Have you ever thought of making one with sweet potato.
Sweet potato is satsuma imo/薩摩芋 in Japanese and they originally came from Central America.
The recipe below is very simple and should be easily expanded:

Sweet Potato Cupcakes!

INGREDIENTS: For 2 large 10×10 cm cupcakes (can of course be divided into smaller ones)

-Sweet potato: 200 g
-Sugar: 30 g
-Dry raisins: 30 g
-All purpose flour: 50 g
-Butter: 60 g
-Egg: 1
-Baking powder: half a teaspoon
-Powdered sugar: a little

RECIPE:

-Set a microwave oven on “vegetables cooking” and heat the sweet potatoes. Peel their skins off. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

-In a food processor drop in flour, sugar, butter, egg and baking powder. Blend. Add sweet potato and blend.

-Add raisins and mix roughly. Pour into cups. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 25~30 minutes.

-Once baked sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Easy, ain’t it?

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Bread + Butter
Zoy Zhang
Hungry Neko
Think Twice
Mangantayon
Hapabento
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Tokyo Terrace
Maison de Christina
Chrys Niles
Lexi
Culinary Musings
Eats and Everything
One Frugal Foodie
Bite Me New England

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-