Today’s Lunch Box/Bento (’10/82): Cereal Rice Bento

I called today’s bento Cereal Rice Bento because the Missus steamed the rice with a special mix of 15 different cereals!

I had been busy all day yesterday being driven for 6 hours through Shizuoka Prefecture. I’m still pretty tired today, what with all the translation work I have to do for Agrigraph Japan, and I needed a solid bento!

As I said the rice was steamed with the addition of a special mix of 15 cereals including corn and many grains. It certainly made for staple!

The Missus added her speciality, soft-boiled egg sprinkled with black sesame and a salad of boiled string beas, red pimentoes, and a dressing containing burdock root chips.

The garnish box was also plentiful!

Spagheti in peperone stle with brocoli, lettuce, prawns fritters and lime for extra taste and zest.

For dessert, imported grapes and local strawberries (the season has just atrted for the latter!)

Plenty for the day and tasty!

Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box, My Bento Box, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat; Bento Lunch Blog (German); Adventures In Bento; Anna The Red’s Bento Factory; Cooking Cute; Timeless Gourmet; Bento Bug; Ideal Meal; Bentosaurus; Mr. Foodie (London/UK)

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日本語のブログ
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Food & Drinks Bloggers in Japan (updated)

The number of foreigners and Japanese nationals who write about the food and drinks in Japan in English (or at least answer comments in English) has remarkably increased lately.
I thought it was about time to start some kind of round-up to help people discover these deserving foodies and their blogs!The list below is far from exhaustive, but I’m planning to update and announce it regularly!
Of course if you know more foodies residing in Japan, do please direct them to me and I will introduce them gladly!

HOKKAIDO TRIBE
(Hokkaido Island)
Meishu no Yutaka by Carlin

TOHOKU TRIBE
(Norteastern Japan: Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi, Akita, Yamagata, Fukushima)
Slow Food From Japan by Nigel Fodgen in Miyagi Prefecture.

KANTO TRIBE
(Eastern Japan: Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma, Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa)
Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass by Melinda Joe in Tokyo
Tokyo Foodcast by Etsuko Nakamura in Tokyo
Sake World by John Gauntner in Tokyo: The inernational Reference for Japanese Sake!
Tokyo Terrace by Rachael in Tokyo
Gaijin Tonic in Tokyo and Kanagawa Prefecture
Nonjatta by Chris Bunting in Tokyo
The Soul Of Japan in Kanagawa Prefecture
Sake, kimono and Tabi In Tokyo
Tokyo Kawai, Etc… in Tokyo
Blue Lotus in Tokyo
The Japanese Food Report by Harris Salat in Tokyo
The Sake Chronicles in Tokyo
Watashi to Tokyo by Mari kanazawa in Tokyo
Japanese Food-Food Lover’s Guide by Yukari Yamamoto in Tokyo
Gaijin Life by a Canadian gentleman in Tokyo
Leo’s Japan Food Blog in Tokyo
Eating Out In Tokyo With Jon
Fugu Tabetai in Tokyo
Japan Style in Tokyo
COCO’s Oriental Kitchen by angela Cooper in Tokyo

CHUBU TRIBE
(Central Japan: Niigata, Toyama, Ishikawa, Fukui, Yamanashi, Nagano, Gifu, Shizuoka, Aichi)
Good Beer & Country Boys in Aichi Prefecture
Yellin Yakimono Gallery by Robert Yellin in Shizuoka Prefecture
Mangantayon in Shizuoka Prefecture
Shizuoka Gourmet, Shizuoka Sake, Shizuoka Sushi, Shizuoka Shochu in Shizuoka Prefecture
Bryan Baird’s Beer & Brewery in Numazu in Shizuoka Prefecture

KANSAI TRIBE
(Western Japan: Mie, Shiga, Kyoto, Osaka, Hyogo, Nara, Kyoto, Wakayama)
Colorfood Daidokoro in Osaka (Englis & French)
Dominique Corby In Osaka (in French, but can answer and read in English)
Nagaijin in Osaka
Kyoto Foodie in Kyoto
Our Adventures in Japan by K and S Minoo in Osaka
Japan Food Addict by Mai in Kyoto

CHUGOKU
(“Central Country”: Tottori, Shimane, Okayama, Hiroshima, Yamaguchi)
Get Hiroshima Blog in Hiroshima
The Wide Island Review, The JET Programme Webzine Of Hiroshima Prefecture (includes food & drink articles)

SHIKOKU
(Shikoku Island: Kagawa, Kochi, Ehime, Tokushima)
Obachan’s Kitchen & Garden Balcony in Kochi Prefecture
Still Clumsy With Chopsticks in Kochi Prfecture (Continuation of Obachan’s Kitchen & Garden Balcony)
Rocking in Hakata by Deas Richardson

KYUSHU
(Kyushu Island: Fukuoka, Nagasaki, Saga, Kumamoto, Miyazaki, Kagoshima)
Not yet!

OKINAWA
(Okinawa Archipelago)
HWN Pake in Okinawa in Chatan, Okinawa

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, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope

Please check the new postings at:
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Green Tea Processing at Marufuku Tea Factory

Mr. Bunji Itoh/伊藤文治 and his daughter Asami/麻美 at Marufuku Tea Factory/丸福造者株式j会社 were kind enough to show me twice the mechanical part of processing green tea as well as explain the various kinds of tea they make.
Bear in mind this the mechanical part of green tea which takes place after picking, steaming and massaging the fresh leaves.

The basic first step is hi-ire/火入れ/roasting which can be done with two different machines:

A comparatively small roasting drum-style machine which can roast green tea at 120~135 degrees Celsius from 10 kg in 20 minutes.

A larger and more elaborate roasting machine which can take care of 300 kg in an hour.

The second step will involve separation according to quality into 5 basic teas I will describe later.

But more than one type of machine is used to produce tea according to the demands and preferences of clients.

Some of quality tea has to be treated by hand!

But the machines certainly make the job easier!

Tea also has to go through other apparatuses to take out unwanted particles, especially metallic powder with magnets.

Finally after the tea has been processed satisfactorily it will have to be put into packs of various sizes.

The tea packs will be then put into larger boxes for delivery!

Basic types of green tea:

Arai-cha/荒い茶/ Coarse Tea

For a closer view of the same.

Boo-cha/棒茶/ Stick tea

For a closer view of the same.

Me cha/芽茶/ Bud tea, the best quality

For a closer view of the same.

Yanagi Cha/柳茶/ Willow Tea, called so because the the roasted leaves look like willow leaves. Also commonly called Ban cha/番茶/ Number Tea

For a closer view of the same.

Kona cha/粉茶/ Powder Tea

For a closer view of the same.

Marufuku Seishya Co. Ltd. (Mr. Bunji Itoh)
Shizuoka Shi, Aoi Ku, Wakamatsu Cho, 25
Tel.: 054-271-2011
Fax: 054-271-2010

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, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope

Please check the new postings at:
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Bryan Baird’s Newsletter (2010/11/20)

Baird Beer & Taproom Events Bulletin
bryan-sayuri.gif

Upcoming Taproom Events

Dear Taproom Friend & Baird Beer Enthusiast:

Thanks to all the participants in last weekend’s ‘Falling for Brew’ tasting and seminar held at our Nakameguro Taproom. The event was great fun and a tremendous success. Fortunately, we have more upcoming beer events of interest that I will detail below.

Upcoming Taproom Events:
*Beers for Books Charity Party @ Numazu Fishmarket Taproom (Saturday, Nov. 20, noon – close):

We are teaming up again with the Beers for Books organization (www.beersforbooks.org) to host a day-long event to raise money for the Room to Read charity which purchases books for poverty-stricken kids in developing countries. All day long on Saturday, November 20, the Fishmarket Tapoom will donate 100 yen per pint sold (and 14% of revenue from non-pint beer sales) to the Room to Read charity.

Gary of Beers for Books in Tokyo is chartering a bus which will be departing from the Nakameguro Taproom at 11:00 am Saturday. It is not too late to sign up and join the caravan (just send an email to Gary: gary@robertleonard.jp). In addition to offering a huge selection of terrific Baird Beer, we will be cooking up a culinary storm, offering guided brewery tours, and inviting ceramics expert Robert Yellin to display, sell (a percentage of sales also will be donated to Room to Read) and talk about Japanese yakimono. We look forward to enjoying good beer and food with you while we all contribute to a good cause.

*BBQ and Champion Homebrew Celebration @ Nakameguro Taproom (Sunday, Nov. 28, noon start):
The Wan Cup is the premier homebrew competition held annually in Japan. The past two years Baird Beer has sponsored one style category in this competition and offered the winner the chance to brew his/her champion beer at our Numazu brewery for public debut at our Nakameguro Taproom. This year we sponsored the Pale Ale category in which two champion beers were selected. One of the champion beers is Mr. Hitoshi Tanaka’s GIN’s #76 Pale Aleand Tanaka-san will be on hand to pour the maiden pint of his wonderfully citrusy Pale Ale at noon sharp on Sunday, November 28. Tanaka-san, together with Baird Beer brewers, will be on hand to talk about all things brewing. We encourage homebrewers and beer enthusiasts of all levels to join in the fun and partake of the education.

People can’t live on beer alone, however. As a special culinary treat, the pitmaster of our soon-to-be Bashamichi Taproom will be on hand serving up all kinds of wonderful and authentic American barbecue dishes (beef brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and sundry side dishes). Come learn about the culture and tradition of real American barbecue, and taste the glory of it! This will be the final Tokyo sneak preview of Bashamichi Taproom BBQ — so if you can’t wait until mid-January, this is your chance.

*10-Year Anniversary Celebration of the Debut of Baird Beer (Jan. 2-3 @ Fishmarket Taproom):
While the Numazu Fishmarket Taproom opened for business in July, 2000, it was without Baird Beer. Our brewing license had yet to be granted and the FT started out by selling other beer. The debut of Baird Beer didn’t happen until our first day of business in January, 2001. Two Baird Beers were hooked up to our British handpumps that day: Fisherman’s Wheat Ale and Kurofune Porter.

We will be celebrating the 10-year anniversary of this debut with recreations of the original recipes for Fisherman’s Wheat Ale and Kurofune Porter served via the original handpumps. In addition, we will be featuring a small-batch 10-Year Anniversary Ale, also pulled from one of our original handpumps, as well as other special celebratory beers. Sayuri and the FT staff will be cooking up a slew of fun New Year beer dishes also. Sayuri and I will be working behind the counter just like the old days.

Please mark your calendar and plan to join us for this important birthday. We will open at noon both days (Sunday & Monday, January 2-3). More details will be provided in subsequent bulletins.

Other Notes:
*Revised Baird Beer Retailer’s Manual: We have completed a comprehensive revision of our Baird Beer Retailer’s Manual which is available for download at our website (click the appropriate icon on the right-hand side of virtually any website page). There is a wealth of material contained here that will be instructive to any business interested in the proper handling/dispense of Baird Beer.

*Launch of the Official Bashamichi Taproom Blog: In anticipation of the January opening of our Bashamichi Taproom in Yokohama, we have launched the official Bashamichi Taproom blog (http://bairdbeer.com/en/blog_bashamichi/). Here, our Pitmaster/Manager, Chuck Morrow, will be documenting the construction progress at our site and, more importantly, introducing consumers to the culture and history of authentic American barbecue. Check it out when you have a moment and send a greeting to Chuck!

Cheers,

Bryan Baird

Baird Brewing Company
Numazu, Japan
HOMEPAGE


The Japan Blog List

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Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
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Please check the new postings at:
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日本語のブログ
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Food Humor: Boomerang Daikon et al!

As I going down the stairs of my apartment this morning to dispose of our rubbish I noticed our dear neighbor, Mr. Yoshizo Sugiyama, washing the daikon he had just pulled out of his big garden.
Nothing much to comment about that, except that some of the daikon were of a farout shape!

Apparently the sudden changes of temperature last summer affected the drainage forcing the daikon in “searching for water.

A “twisting ballet dancer”?

That one really tried to swim into two different directions at the same time! LOL

Looking for more!

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, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope

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

As I going down the stairs of my appartment this morning to get rid of our rubbish, I noticed my dear neighbour, Mr. Yoshizo Sugiyama, washing daikon he has jest pulled out of his graden.
Nothing to talk about in itself, bu the shapes of some daikon were a different matter!

Due to the great sudden changes of temperature this summer and drainage being consequently affected, the daikon had to “search” their water, hence the strange shapes!

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, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope

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

Italian Cuisine: Umegashima Wild Boar Ragu Pici Pasta at Il Castagno

Service: Excellent and very friendly
Facilities: clean
Prices: reasonable
Specialty: Central and south Italian-style cuisine. Home-made pasta. Very reasonables prices. Progressive wine list.
no-smoking-logo1 Non-smoking!

The other day as I cycled around to find out where I was going to have my lunch between two bouts of computer work, I noticed an interesting if not unusual dish on the menu of the day posted in front of Il Castagno:
Umegashima Wild Boar Pasta!

Umegashima is the area located near the source of the Abe River flowing across Shizuoka city.
It is nationally famous for its many hotsprings, tea culture and wasabi and shamo chicken.
But what people know less is that it is a region replete with wild game, especially deer and wild boar!
The chef at Il Castagno managed to put his hands on a wild boar leg and hind which had been shot down a few days before my visit!

He marinated the meat for 24 hours in herbs, wine and ingredients he did not really want to reveal…
He then simmered slowly with white wine into an incredible Ragu!
Themeat had been so softened that it was easily shredded into convenient bits for a pasta dish.
The present pasta are Toscana Pici, hand-made at the resataurant (all pasta there is freshly hand-made!).
Serve with Italian parsley and Parmeggiano Regiano, it made for an utterly extravagant pasta dish!

IL CASTAGNO
420-0843 Shizuoka Shi, Aoi Ku, Tomoe Cho, 48 (along Kitakaido Street)
Tel. & Fax: 054-247-0709
Business hours: 11:45~14:00, 17:30~21:00
Closed on Mondays and second Tuesdays
Lunch: 1,260 and 1,860 yen
Dinner: 4,000 and 5,000 yen
A la Carte menu and wine list available. Wine by the glass ok
Reservations recommended.
Credit Cards OK (evening only)
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope

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

French Desserts at Pissenlit

Service: excellent and very friendly
Facilities: great washroom, great cleanliness overall
Prices: reasonable, good value.
Strong points: Interesting wine list. Great use of local products.
no-smoking-logoentirely non-smoking!

I do not need to introduce Pissenlit, one of the very best French restaurants in the whole Shizuoka Prefecture.
As I often go there, alone, with the Missus or friends, I find it more practical to introduce Tooru Arima’s creations as a group!
This time I would like to introduce you to some of his recent desserts!

Let’s start with the first one (Top picture repeated!):
La France Pear Compote on Vanilla Ice-cream and Creme Brulee.
The pear had been compoted beforehand and kept in the fridge.
It was placed on a portion of home-made vanilla ice-cream.
The whole was covered and surrounded with a light creme anglaise/custard which was then “brulee” with a gas burner. Some glazing sugar and mint were added to the fear as a finishing point!
Succulent and lighter than it looks!

Coffee Creme Brulee.

The dreme/pudding contained a lot of strong mocha coffee for the perfect mariage. The creme was brulee until its srface was thick and crackling.
Served with fresh figs, it almost looked like a chocolate cream.
As usual lighter than usual and a treat you never tires of. Of course served with a high-quality coffee!

Roasted Figs with Vanilla Ice Cream and Roquefort Blue Cheese Cream.

Now, this was quite a discovery!
The sweet taste of the roasted (Shizuoka-grown) figs was counterbalanced in two gradual ways: first the vanilla ice-cream (light as usual) will bring you down a little from the sweet plane onto the salted and sweet plane formed by the Roqufort cheese mixed into a light cream!
An experience!

Caramel Flan/Pudding with Fruits and Vegetables Sorbets.

A seemingly simple dessert until you discover than sorbets are made with vegetables, spinach and tomato! The fruit are persimmon, pione grapes and two small fruits I don’t have a clue about (sorry,I’ll check during my next visit!).
Incidentally the caramel pudding is firm, sweet to the right point and the caramel sauce a beauty!

looking forward to the next ones!

PISSENLIT
420-0839 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Takajo, 2-3-4
Tel.: 054-270-8768
Fax: 054-627-3868
Business hours: 11:30~14:30; 17:00~22:00
Closed on Tuesdays and Sunday evening
Homepage (Japanese)
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, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope

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