Tag Archives: Conger Eel

French Gastronomy: Land & Sea/Conger Eel & Winged Bean at Pissenlit in Shizuoka City!

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Service: Excellent and very friendly.
Facilities: Great cleanliness overall. Superb washroom (mouthwash and toothpicks provided!)!
Prices: Reasonable to slightly expensive, very good value.
Strong points: Interesting wine list. Great use of local products, especially organic vegetables and Shizuoka-bred meat and caught fish. Very inventive French gastronomy.

Shizuoka Prefecture being practically “sandwiched” between sea and land in the mildest part of Japan occupies the most favorable location for a constant supply of fresh produce from the sea, the land and the mountains all year round.
It is more a question of finding new ideas to combine such products in season than to look for a rare product and try to arrange it.
Shizuoka conger eels or anago/穴子 are famed all over the country and can be sampled at many Japanese Restaurants.

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Chef Toru Arima/有馬亨さん being Japanese but first and foremost a French cuisine chef came up with the idea of preparing conger eel almost in Japanese manner by first sauteed and baking it to a crisp and seasoning with a sauce combining both traditional Japanese and French sauce ingredients (secrets, I’m afraid!) I can only guess, but the result leaves you baffled in between two traditions for your utter gustative pleasure!

Now, the wing bean (also known as the Goa bean and Asparagus pea, Four-angled bean and Winged pea) placed symmetrically atop the conger eel is actually called “Square bean/Shikaku Mame/しかく豆” in Japanese.
Would you believe it is a tropical legume plant native to Papua New Guinea?
It is a very valuable vegetable when it comes to all kinds of beneficial elements.
It has recently acquired a big reputation here in Shizuoka and is presented and eaten in all kinds of sizes.
The one used Tooru is still small and young.
Not only it is a tasty and healthy vegetable but it also offers all sorts of design idea thanks to its fresh color which helps enhance the darker colors of meat or fish!
Incidentally this winged bean was organically grown in Fujinomiya City at the foot of Mount Fuji!

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
Entirely non-smoking!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Shop with Intent by Debbie
BULA KANA in Fiji
Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

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: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

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Italian Gastronomy: Chestnuts & Ricotta Cheese Ravioli at Soloio in Shizuoka City!

Service: Pro and very friendly
Equipment & Facilities: Great overall cleanliness and superb washroom
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Fresh local ingredients whenever possible. Both traditional and inventive Italian cuisine. Good wine list at moderate prices. Open late!

Running over and over full dinners at my favorite restaurants is not always such a good idea, especially considering that most often I visit them for only a couple of drinks and one great but sole dish!

Solio serves extravagant seasonal food with a personal twist at reasonable prices and here is another typical example:

Chestnuts and Ricotta Cheese ravioli!

This is the season for fresh chestnuts in Europe and also in Japan where they are appreciated in so many forms!
The dough used for the fresh ravioli was a combination of fine wheat flour and chestnut flour
The taste was certainly more remarkable than the bland dough used for usual ravioli!
And the size made them so easier to savor!

The filling was an exquisite marriage between ground fresh chestnut and ricotta cheese seasoned with other ingredients that were unfortunately kept secret!
But the result was a sweetish kind of ravioli perfectly balanced with a very light sauce using the boiling water and a sprinkle of parmeggiano cheese!

Instead of ordering them as an appetizer, I finished my meal with them and a full-body red wine!

A must-try!

To be continued…

SOLOIO
420-0858 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenmacho, 9-7, Kita, 1
Tel./fax: 054-260-4637
Business hours: 16:00~24:00
Closed on Monday
Credit cards OK
Private parties welcome!
Happy hour: 16:00~17:00: 1,000 yen set-3 appetizers plate and 1 glass of house wine!
Smoking allowed BUT Non-smoking until 20:00 everyday!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, 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,
Susan at Arkonlite, 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), Ohayo Bento,

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!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

Italian Gastronomy: Deep-fried Conger Eel & Aubergines in Anchovy Sauce at Soloio in Shizuoka City!

Service: Pro and very friendly
Equipment & Facilities: Great overall cleanliness and superb washroom
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Fresh local ingredients whenever possible. Both traditional and inventive Italian cuisine. Good wine list at moderate prices. Open late!

Running over and over full dinners at my favorite restaurants is not always such a good idea, especially considering that most often I visit them for only a couple of drinks and one great but sole dish!

Solio serves extravagant seasonal food at reasonable prices and here is another typical example:

Deep-fried Conger Eel & Aubergines in Anchovy Sauce!

Presentation also is of a superlative quality even for the simplest dishes!
Note the three-dimensional arrangement with a long piece of conger eel supporting the aubergine slice like a beam!

The conger eel, a fish Shizuoka Prefecture is famous for, is deep-fried together with the aubergines (from the Chef’s garden!) and served with a light but very efficient anchovy sauce!

It is wicked pleasure to break up the edifice and eat it the whole with your fingers (and lick them later!) and dip each piece into some anchovy sauce for perfect pleasure!
Perfect with a solid red wine!

To be continued…

SOLOIO
420-0858 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenmacho, 9-7, Kita, 1
Tel./fax: 054-260-4637
Business hours: 16:00~24:00
Closed on Monday
Credit cards OK
Private parties welcome!
Happy hour: 16:00~17:00: 1,000 yen set-3 appetizers plate and 1 glass of house wine!
Smoking allowed BUT Non-smoking until 20:00 everyday!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, 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,
Susan at Arkonlite, 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), Ohayo Bento,

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!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

Japanese Seasonal Fish: Noresore/Conger Eel Whitebait


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Please check the new postings at:
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“Noresore” will soon appear at some select fish markets, and as it will be a very short season, you will have to keep your eyes open!
Noresore stands for very young conger eels. They are called different names depending on regions: “Berada” in Okayama Prefecture, “Tachikurage” in Misaki, “Nagatankurage” in Wakayama Prefecture
In Shizuoka, they mainly come from Hamana Lake, a seawater lake west of the Prefecture, famous for its oysters, eels and clams.

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5~6cm long, they are practically transparent, save for their eyes. They emit no smell. In our Prefecture they are available only during the first two weeks of March. They are slowly but surely becoming a rarity wherever in Japan, and people come from afar just for the experience!

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Before serving them, lightly wash them in clean salted water.
As sushi, put them on top of “gunkan”, or a rice ball if you are an expert, with freshly grated ginger and chopped thin leeks.
I like them best served as they are with a little “ponzu or “yuzu” vinegar, a dash of “momijioroshi” (freshly grated daikon and chili pepper) and some chopped thin leeks for a last touch of colour!

Eel Species

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

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Here is another fish, second only to tuna, so popular in Japan!

Anago/Conger Eel
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Anago or Conger Eel, a favourite all over Japan, does come in many varieties, some edible, some not.

The most popular conger eel in Japan is “Maanago” (“True Conger Eel”).
It is also called “Anago”, “Hakarime” and “Hamo” (although this particular kind should be treated separately)
Summer is the best season, although they are available all year round in Sushi restaurants.
They are mainly caught in Tokyo Bay, Jyowata Bay and Seto Sea.
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Most Japanese appreciate them first boiled in broth then cooked on a grill over charcoal fire and then dipped in “tare/Japanese grill sauce”.
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As for nigiri, they come in many guises: topped with “tare” (sauce) or just with a light brush of shoyu (see above pics)
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Or a bit on the crispy side, or on the very soft and melting one (see above pics)
It basically depends on the chef’s skills and preferences.
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One should not forget they also taste great as tempura, including the bones, a particular favourite of mine!

Samples with bright skin transaprent flesh are the best.
Imports from China and Korea have increased recently, although Japan is starting putting strong regulations to protect the species.
As for Shizuoka Prefecture, we do have access to fresh fish. Select your sushi restaurant accordingly!
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Unagi/Common Eel

Unagi or common eel is fish which made Hamanako/Hamana Lake famous in western Shizuoka Prefecture.
As summer approaches, the Japanese are looking forward to eat the delicacy as it is supposed to revitalize your body on very hot days.
Also called “Kayoko”, “Subera” or “Aobai”, it is farmed mainly in Shizuoka, Aichi and Gifu Prefectures.
It is only in the Edo Period that the Japanese starting it after they realized it could not be eaten raw as opposed to anago/conger eel or hamo/pike conger eel (coming soon!).
Japan presently produces more than 24,000 tonnes and still imports 14,000 tonnes whole and 71,000 tonnes cooked, most of it from China.

It is quite popular as nigiri in any part of Japan.

But the Japanese are simply crazy about “kabayaki”, which requires to grill and baste the fish at the same time, a fairly tedious process. It is a bit of an acquired taste as the connoisseurs eat the skin, which a bit oily to my liking.
In Hamamtsu, it is possible to eat the real wild fish in a very few restaurants, but you will know the difference when the bill comes!

Suehiro-Hamanako no Megumi Sushi Restaurant


The Japan Blog List

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

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No this is not the day’s laundry, but the skins of the fugu/globefish that had just been dressed yesterday by Ms. Yokota at Suehiro-Hamanako no Megumi Sushi Restaurant in Hamamatsu City!
The fish were caught in Hamano Lake in the morning, so one could not expect anything fresher!
Ms. Yokota has the government license to cut and dress fugu, and since I’m still alive this morning, I suppose it is the proof she is very proficient at her art!
Contrary to what many people think, she explained that it is not only the female fish ovaries that contain mortal poison but also the male fish liver. There are over 100 varieties of fugu/globefish in Japan and almost all of them are poisonous, so beware!
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Incidentally the skin of the fish is edible and is usually served in thin stripes either raw with grated daikon or grilled on a stick.
But I had come mainly for the nigiri I had ordered over internet, served with thin leeks strips between the shari (rice) and neta (topping) with a little momiji oroshi/grated daikon with chili pepper. Bliss!
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People tend to forget that fugu makes for a great treat deep-fried or as tempura. Just eat them with your fingers and suck on the bones!
Simply extravagant morsels with sake!
Suehiro-Hamanako no Megumi is becoming a favourite place of mine. Pity it is so far from Shizuoka City!
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Well, I had not come for the globe fish only, although an all-fugu menu is available.
Ms. Yokota also prepares some great Japanes Foie Gras/Frog Fish Liver/Ankimo, and I had also ordered beforehand.
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It came with an interesting variation as the chef, after having steamed it in sake in the traditional way, further simmers it in mirin, soy sauce and what else. The latter should be even easier to eat for expats!
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Being in Hamamatsu City and near Hamana Lake, I had to taste the local Anago/Conger Eel sushi: so sweet and melting!

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Ms. Yokoto knowing I was coming made sure I could choose from Shizuoka Prefecture sake.
She certainly did not disappoint me:
Garyubai by Sanwa Brewery, Shimizu Ku, Shizuoka City.
Kaiun by Doi Brewery in Kakegawa City.
Den-Ichiro by Kokkou Brewery in Fukuroi City.
Jizake Kobo by Morimoto Brewery In Kikugawa City.
I chose the latter, a hearty shiboritate genshu with a strong alcohol content. Perfect with grea sushi!

SUEHIRO-HAMANAKO NO MEGUMII AJI
Hamamatsu City, Naka Ku, suyama Cho, 360-6
Tel.: 053-452-6288
Business Hours: 11:30-13:30&17:00-22:00
Closed on every Wednesday and second Tuesday