Kimchi Meat Balls in Sweet & Sour Sauce

I found a whole series of meat balls rcipes in my notes that I will have the pleasure to introduce. I’m sure you will be able to expand on them.
As for today: Kimchi Meat Balls in Sweet & Sour Sauce

INGREDIENTS: for 2 people

Meat balls:

-Dried Daikon Kimchi: 100g
-Minced pork: 200 g
-Panko, Breadcrumbs: 2 tablespoons
-leek (finely chopped): 2 tablespoons
-Egg: 1
-Japanese sake: 1 tablespoon
-Pepper: a pinch
-Sesame oil: 1 and half tablespoons
-Cornstarch: 1 and a half tablespoons

Sweet & Sour Sauce:
-Japanese sake: 2 tablespoons
-Sugar: 2 tablespoons
-Soy sauce: 1 and half tablespoons
-Rice vinegar: 1 tablespoon
-Ketchup: 3 tablespoons
-Chicken bouillon powder: 1 teaspoon
-Cornstarch: 2 teaspoons
–Water (lukewarm): 1 and a half tablespoons

RECIPE:

-Separate the dried kimchi Daikon and chop finely

-Mix all the meat balls ingredients in a large ball and mix well until you obtain a smooth mixture. Shape balls small enough.

-Deep-fry meat balls on low (150 degrees Celsius) fire for 14~16 minutes until you obtain a nice colour and well cooked core.

-In a fry pan drop the sweet & sour sauce, except cornstarch and water. Bring to boil first, then lower fire. Add the corntarch dissolved in the lukewarm water. Drop in all themeat balls and stir until all are well-covered with the sauce.

Serve over a bed of lettuce and brocoli boiled in salted water.

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Japanese Seasonal Fish: Kisu/Shirogisu-Sillago

SILLAGO-SHIROGISU

Shirogisu, or Sillago in English probably has as many Japanese names as English names.
The Sillago found along the Japanese shores is also called sillago japonica, Whiting or Smelt-Whiting in english, Shirogisu, Kisu, Magisu and Kisugo in Japanese.

The best specimen in Japan are caught in Fukuoka (Kyushu) and Ehime (Shikoku) prefectures from Spring to Summer.
It is also a sport angler’s favourite as they come in all sizes, although the everage will not measure much more than 10 cm.

Standard Shirogisu Sashimi

As a sahimi/raw fish it van be prepared in many manners:
Standard sashimi as above.

Shirogisu Konbujime Sashimi.
As konbujime, it will be matured between two sheets of wet konbu/seaweed to attain a sweet taste.

Shirogisu Aburi Sashimi

As aburi/lightly seared, one can enjoy two different textures and tastes at the same time.
Mind you, it is not easy to sear properly as the fillets are very thin!

The greatest part of the sillago catch comes from Indonesia, Korea, Thailand, China and other Asian countries.
Fortunately, here in Shizuoka, we do catch a sizeable amount in Suruga Bay guaranting freshness in season.

Shirogisu Sushi Nigiri.

If absolutely fresh, shirohisu/sillago makes for an interesting morsel, the more for it as it is quite rare in this sushi nigiri form.

Anglers will certainly appreciate it grilled on the stick at a BBQ on the beach with a nice pint of beer!

But the most popular way of savouring it is arguably as tempura or breaded and deep-fried, although the fish taste will vary greatly with freshness!
But if absolutely fresh, don’t forget to deep-fry its bones and head!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Social Culinaire, Sushi Nomads, Cook, Eat & Share, Gourmet Fury, 5 Star Foodie, Easy Does It Recipes, Oyster Culture, Once A Chef, All In Good Food, Cooking Stuff, Cheese Monger, Palate To Pen, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Citron Et Vanille

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Gastronomic Cycling in Shizuoka (7)

I did follow the Koya-Machi street in a previous posting.
The problem is that in Japan cities are not clearly divided into streets or districts. Very often names were given to main streets (only main for that matter) only recently as an indication of the main thoroughfar going through a district of the same name.
Acoordingly I had to cycle around and away from the same Koya-Machi street to give a good indication of the area.

In daytime, the entry to the other street belonging to Koyama-machi has nothing particular about it, but keep an eye open even in daytime (whereas at night, you will need both!LOL).

Gyudon/bowl of rice topped with shredded beef is making for brisk business, especially at lunch time for restricted budgets. As for the taste, I wonder….

Now, this is THE important spot: the oldest wasabi store in the world: Tamaruya since the middle of the 17th Century!

Just in front is the local shrine.

A place you must visit on the second Sunday every month as a big flea-market is staged there!

Beware the guardian lion!

Kani-Tei is the only restaurant in town specializing in crab although it has a conveyor-belt sushi restaurant annex just next door.

In daytime, the crab is moving its legs!

But at night it will stay quescient, unless struck by an earthquake!

Check the plastic displays!

Pity it’s all plastic!

Next door they serve Oma Honmaguro/Blue Fin Tuna from Aomori Prefecture!

Check their susuhi displays!

Sushi set displays!

Next door is an invitation to hell. At least you will know how to read it in Japanese. Not bad as an art pic, though!

Toraya, the oldest bag store in town. Ladies should definitely pay it a visit!

Parco, which took over the defunct Seibu Store.
Not a bad place as far as department stores come.

It does have a great merit, though, at it includes an all-organic food stand in the basement run by Mr. Matsuki of Bio Farm in Fujinomiys City!

Organic vegetables grown by the same!

Great organic bentoes!

Parco’s pizza restaurant used to serve good enough pizzas. That is, until the Italian chain owner went back to Tokyo to open more diners….

Parco has its own restaurants to compete with the cheap shops in the area.

If you stretch your neck, you will discover izakayas at all levels. “Ikkyu” means “Take a little rest”!

All nationalities seem to have their massage parlour. This one is Chinese…

Judging from the rates, it seems good business!

The area is replete with relatively cheap izakayas. I can’t say anything about their food, but they make for good pics!

A Cafe bringing up memories of the past….

Some fashion clothes store are definitely worth a pause!

Great spot for taxi-drivers to take a rest!

Not many signboards, but you still find them!

At first sight, this new ramen restaurant look much like those everywhere in the country.

The originality resides in the fact they show their menu through a hi-tec computer display screen!

The only place harbouring the Basque flag. A Tapas restaurant, naturally! Sorry for the fuzzy pic, but not that easy to take on a windy night!LOL

A cheap yakitori.

Nakajimaya Hotel, one of the better hotels in town. Its particular location makes very practucal for night owls!

The interesting thing about this cheap izakaya is the old sign board advertizing insectiside! Ought to be clean inside!

Cheap and garish diner.

Now, what do they mean by “Paris care”? Notwithstanding the mistakes!

Cheap chain izakaya do make for good pics, though…

This place has just closed. They must not have had enough of them…

One more reason for me to avoid the place…

Don’t be fooled by that sign!
They only mean that you can drink all the wine you want for a determined time and price!

Wedding companies are BIG business in Japan!

Couldn’t find the entrance of that bar…serious!

That shop exclusively sells junk sweets!

As for this one, it sells only socks!

Interesting shoes…

This shop specializesin “kamaboko”.

Kamaboko (蒲鉾) is a type of cured surimi, a Japanese processed seafood product, in which various white fish are pureed, combined with additives such as MSG, formed into distinctive loaves, and then steamed until fully cooked and firm.

I was about to finish with this fruit parlour,

but I noticed the sign of that “convenience stire. “Cosme” stands for “cosmetics”…

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Social Culinaire, Sushi Nomads, Cook, Eat & Share, Gourmet Fury, 5 Star Foodie, Easy Does It Recipes, Oyster Culture, Once A Chef, All In Good Food, Cooking Stuff, Cheese Monger, Palate To Pen, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Citron Et Vanille

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Cheese Plate and Wine Tasting at Gentil

Cheese Tray of the day (2010/02/26):
-Top row: Brie de Meaux (4 months, France), Gorgonzola Dolce (Italy), Bleu D’Auvergne (France), Raclette (6 months, Hokkaido, Japan).
-Bottom row: Chevre Noir (2 years, Goat Milk, Canada), Mont D’or (France), Petit Agour Basque (Ewe, France), Cream cheese and Rum Raisins creation by Gentil.

It was about grand time I paid a visit to Gentil, the oldest French restaurant (1964) in Shizuoka City.
It is a great and accordingly expensive restaurant, but if you confine yourself to a plate of cheese and a glass of good wine, it is actually great value.
Ms. Keiko Kubota is THE authority on any cheese in Japan and actually helps mature cheese she acquires all year long in season only.

As for wines, the pairings are just sublime.

As I had oredered the full tray and requested a white wine, I was offered the following:

A white from my country!

Alsace, France, Riesling by Jean Ginglinger, 2008.

Very clear and clean. Bright golden colour
Aroma: Fruity and sweetish, very natural, green grass, Muscat and apples.
Taste: Soft attack, fruity at first with muscat, but quickly taking a very tangy turn with green grass, green apples and peach memories.
Very pleasant and great pairing with cheese. Kept it own all the time in spite of the strong cheese.

Now for the plate!
All the cheeses represented on the tray at the top of this article are feature except one!
Can you guess them all?

The raclette came on toasts!
I will not bore you with the tasting of the cheeses. They are just all top in their own categories and seasonal. The only thing I will say is that start chasing them around wherever you live!LOL

You do need some sugar to balance all the salt ingested with the cheese!
Chocolate cake, Mikan/Orange jelly and Creme brulee (and sorbets!)

Instead of coffee, I opted for the sorbet/sherbet farandole:
Camomille & Milk, Rum Raisins, Maro-Blue/Usubeni Aoi Herb.
The little mignardise is a snow ball bicuit made with chocolate and caraway seeds.

Need I comment more?

Restaurant Gentil
Address:420-0031 Shizuoka Shi, Gofuku-cho, 2-9-1, Gennan Kairaku building, 2F
Tel.: 054-2547655 (Reservations advisable)
Fax: 054-2210509
Opening hours: 12:00~14:00, 18:00~last orders for meals at 21:30. Bar time 18:00~23:30. Closed on Mondays.
Credit cards OK
Homepage (Japanese)

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Avocado & Crab Gratin (Japanese style?)

There is little to say again how tasty and healthy avocadoes are.
Since we can find them all year round, try and find some crab meat, and you will able to reproduce this easy Japanese cuisine-inspired recipe:. I’m sure you will expand on it!

Avocado & Crab Gratin!

INGREDIENTS: For two people

-Avocado: 1 large and just ripe
-Crab meat: a standard small tin (about a quarter of a cup/50 CC)
-Onion (finely chopped): 1 and half tablespoons
-Lemon juice: to taste
-Mayonnaise (make your own!): 4 tablespoons
-Mozzarella cheese: 1/4 ~1/2 ball
-Wasabi (try to real one. If not available, horseradish should be ok!): 2 teaspoons (grated)
-Salt: to taste
-Pepper: to taste

RECIPE:

-Cut the mozzarella cheese into 1 cm cubes
-Take crab meat out of tin with its water (will add taste!) and drop it in a bowl with mozzarella cheese, onion, mayonnaise, lemon juice, grated wasabi, salt and pepper. Try to experiment with quantities!. Mix well.

-Cut avocado in half(ves) and discard the seed.
Fill each half of the avocado with half of the crabmeat sauce.

-Bake in oven at 200 dgrees Celsius for 15 minutes.

-Eat it hot! Hot avocado is suprisingly tasty, so have this appetizer in cold weather!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Hapabento, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Tokyo Terrace, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Social Culinaire, Sushi Nomads, Cook, Eat & Share, Gourmet Fury, 5 Star Foodie, Easy Does It Recipes, Oyster Culture, Once A Chef, All In Good Food, Cooking Stuff

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Sashimi Plate at Uzu (’10/02/25)

Service: excellent, easy-going and very friendly
Facilities: great washroom, great cleanliness overall
Prices: very reasonable, good value.
Strong points: Very fresh local ingredients especially organic vegetables extensively used.

Just had our regular visit, the Missus and I last night at Uzu, the talk of the town (on TV nest Sunday!) as far as Izakayas arec ocncerned in this city.

Apart of supremely extravagant vegatables and meat, one can expect the best quality sashimi there, too. And most of it local!

From right to left:
-Isaki/Chicken Grunt (what a name!), both as sashimi and seared sashimi/aburi sashimi (Suruga Bay).
-Kihada Magura/Albacore Tuna
-Madako/True Octopus
-Grated fresh wasabi from up the Abe River, Shizuoka City.
-Benimasu/Salmon Trout from Fijnomya City.

A real treat!

UZU
Shizuoka City, Otowa-cho, 3-18
Tel.: 054-249-6262
Business hours: 17:00=23:00
Closed on Mondays and first Tuesday
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Hapabento, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Tokyo Terrace, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Social Culinaire, Sushi Nomads, Cook, Eat & Share, Gourmet Fury, 5 Star Foodie, Easy Does It Recipes, Oyster Culture, Once A Chef

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Vegan Caprese-Style Tomato & Tofu Salad

I’ve already introduced vegan tofu salads for my friends.
This is another one with a lttle twist!

INGREDIENTS: For 1~2 persons

-Tofu (kinu tofu): 1/2 block: 200g
-Tomato: a large whole one
-Basil leaves: 10 (large and fresh!)

Dressing:
-Wine vinegar: 1/4 cup: 50 cc/ml
-Salt: 1/3 teaspoon
-Whole black peppers: 3 seeds, ground (use a bottle!)
-Garlic: 1/2 clove (fresh!)
-Red chili pepper: 1/2 (fresh if possible) (Chopped finely)
-Olive oil (EV): 1.1/4~ tablespoon
-Onion: 15 g (Fresh and new if possible!)

RECIPE:

-Cut the tofu in 1 cm-thick slices.

-Cut out the stem end off the tomato and cut into half-moon slices.

-Crush the garlic and throw it into a small pan with the wine vinegar, Salt, black pepper, and red chili pepper and heat it until reduced to half.

-Transfer the dressing into a bowl floating on a larger bowl half-filled with water and ice and leave until chilled.

-Take out unsightly pieces out of the dressing. Grate the onion over it and mix. Add the oil oil and mix.

-On a serving dish place the slices of tofu and tomatoes and the basil leaves alternatively as shown on picture above. Season with dressing and serve!

-Very low in calories!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES
Not-Just-Recipes, Bengal cuisine, Cooking Vegetarian, Frank Fariello, Gluten-free Vegan Family, Meatless Mama, Warren Bobrow, Wheeling Gourmet, Le Petit Cuisinier, Vegan Epicurean, Miss V’s Vegan Cookbook, Comestiblog, To Cheese or not To Cheese, The Lacquer Spoon, Russell 3, Octopuspie, Bread + Butter, Pegasus Legend, Think Twice, The French Market Maven

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