Happy Friday! Since the last few (and next few) posts have been about Okinawa, I thought it would be good to introduce a condiment that’s ubiquitous to all the islands – Koregusu (pronounced: ko-ray-goo-sue). It’s a bottle of awamori – the local alcohol made from rice – mixed with lots of red hot chill peppers. You’ll find it at many of the restaurants especially okinawan soba joints. A little bit goes a long way and adds a nice, slow bite to your dishes.
What are your favorite hot sauces?
Well that didn’t take that long! You can now find cronuts in cafes around Tokyo supplied by Banderole. The craze hasn’t hit the radar of Japanese trend setters yet so don’t expect the long lines that you’d find for pancakes or brunch spots. I’m not sure if this will become a fad in Japan as even cupcakes haven’t made a big splash. But we’ll see! Sometimes these food trends take awhile to catch on here (like pancakes). Continue reading
As if we don’t get hungry enough looking at our foodie-filled Instagram and Facebook feeds, we can now smell them too.
The Japanese have come up with a little device called Scentee that attaches to your phone’s headphone jack, and using some preinstalled cartridges, it ‘blows’ foodie scents at you. You can already buy a Scentee with coffee, apples, and cinnamon roll scents (breakfast anyone?), but coming soon is the smell of Japanese beef BBQ. Continue reading
Last weekend, we were invited to our friend, Megha’s house to learn some home cooked Indian dishes – Malai Kofta and Chicken Tikka. Malai Kofta is a vegetarian dish of fried balls of fresh cheese served in a cream gravy sauce. I’m not usually one for vegetarian dishes, but I can’t wait to make this again. It was hearty and filling – perfect for this fall weather! Here’s how to make it yourself at home, in pictures!
For the kofta, you’ll need: 1 quart milk, 1.5 tbsp white vinegar, 2 medium potatoes (boiled & mashed), 2 tsp flour, 1/4 tsp cardamom powder, salt, olive oil, oil for frying
For the malai, you’ll need: 4-5 medium tomatoes, 1/4 cup cashews, 2 tbsp melon seeds, 1 tsp poppy seeds, 1 tsp chopped ginger, 2 green cardamom pods, 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1/4 cup yogurt, 1/4 tsp garam masala powder, salt to taste, 2 tbsp fresh cream
First, make the cheese:
Honmura An has long been one of my favorite restaurants in Tokyo. It’s one of the many Michelin-starred restaurants here and specializes in handmade soba. The soba here is sublime. It’s the perfect smooth and chewy texture, and you can really taste a deep buckwheat flavor. The dipping sauce is even more elegant here. They serve a wide variety of soba on their menu – from plain soba served in a bamboo box or soba topped with uni. Continue reading
I can honestly say that I have never had good pork until I came to Japan. Although Japan is famous for its beef, the pork is also high quality, marbled, juicy, full of flavor, and oh so tender. There are many ways to eat pork in Japan, but one of the popular dishes is tonkatsu – a lightly breaded, fried pork cutlet. I’ve been wanting to try Butagumi in Nishi Azabu for a long time. It’s rated as one of the best places in Tokyo for tonkatsu, and I have to agree that it’s my favorite so far!
Don’t you hate it when your pizza arrives at your house all smooshed to one side? Those pizza delivery guys can take a lesson from this guy. I spotted this delivery circus act in Akasaka Mitsuke and had to scramble to take out my camera and do a thorough inspection of his balancing act before the light changed. What he’s holding is just a flat tray without any handles or grips beneath it! At stop lights, he balances it on his shoulder (like in this photo), and while he’s riding, he balances the tray on one hand while directing his bike with the other. And to make it even crazier? There’s definitely hot soup in those bowls. He really gives a new meaning to “Look Ma! No hands!”