Tsukune Teriyaki ~ Japanese Chicken Meatballs with a Teriyaki Glaze 鶏つくねの照り焼き

Sorry I know it's been WAY too long since my last post. I returned from my yearly Spring trip back to our Tokyo home in April and I was a little depressed. Of course I'm always happy to return to Seattle, back in our beautiful Bellevue home that I love and hugging our sweet puppy Kenshin but I'm always a little sad leaving Japan. I'm sad leaving my friends that I reunite with every time I'm back in Tokyo (who I met through social media!) and all of the fabulous food! Yes that's one of the real reasons I'm depressed. It takes me a couple months to get over it but planning my Fall trip helps. We … [Read more...]

Fried Pork Wontons with a Sweet and Sour Dipping Sauce

I really love Chinese food but I rarely eat it when I'm at our Seattle home. Chinese food in the United States is usually quick, cheap, and very greasy. Not always but most of the time. I know there are some great upscale Chinese restaurants in some cities but I really haven't found a good one in Seattle yet. In Tokyo there are the quick and cheap Chinese food places all over the city but there are many beautiful upscale ones as well with amazing food. I really miss my favorite Chinese places when I'm in Seattle. The kind of places with fine china and white tablecloths. Yes those kind of … [Read more...]

Spicy Japanese Eggplant and Pork, Mapo Nasu マーボーなす

Summer is here and I am starting to see my favorite Japanese Eggplant (Nasu in Japanese) in our local Asian Supermarket and it looks beautiful! I love eggplant and I also love spicy food so of course one of my favorite Chinese dishes is Mapo (or Mabo) Tofu. Well this recipe is like Mapo Tofu but there is eggplant in the recipe in place of the tofu. It is so good believe me. I love ordering Mapo Nasu at my favorite Chinese restaurants in Tokyo but unfortunately there are no restaurants in Seattle that make it right. Most of the Mapo Nasu here is very oily. The eggplant is deep fried first … [Read more...]

Chashu ~ Japanese Braised Pork チャーシュー 煮豚

I posted my Shio Ramen recipe last week so I wanted to master Chashu, or Nibuta (which means slowly simmered or braised pork) to go on top of it! Chashu has always been my favorite ramen topping and fried rice ingredient. Many Ramen places in Japan will have a Chashu Fried Rice on the menu and I can never pass it up. Chashu is very versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes and of course who can resist slowly cooked pork belly? The aroma alone drives me crazy. One of my favorite Ramen shops in Tokyo, Doraichi, is just a short walk away from our Azabujuban condo and makes some of the … [Read more...]

Shio (Salt) Ramen 塩ラーメン

Yes I know it has been quite a long time since my last post. I was kind of in a funk after the holidays and couldn't get into my recipe groove. I was blaming the holidays but it's already March so I don't think I can use that excuse anymore. Another problem was I couldn't decide what recipe to post next but then I was inspired by a bowl of Shio Ramen while experimenting at home. I thought this is it! I had to share this recipe with all of you. Yes this Shio Ramen brought Lovely Lanvin's groove back. I am having my first Ramen cooking class at Nikkei Horizons in Seattle this month and that … [Read more...]

Miso Chanko Nabe with Chicken Meatballs (Sumo Wrestler Hot Pot) ちゃんこ鍋

  First let me apologize for not posting since I travelled back to our Tokyo home in June. I know the people who follow me on Instagram and twitter knew what I was up to (and what I was eating) and always follow my trips back to Japan. It was a very busy Summer for me plus we had record breaking sunshine and heat in Seattle so we spent most of our time outdoors enjoying it. Hubby was also in Seattle for the entire month of August so time just flew by. Oh and another big thing happened. A new Coton de Tulear puppy named Kenshin joined our family in August and I've been busy with puppy … [Read more...]

Hiyashi Chuka (Cold Ramen) with a Sesame Miso Sauce 冷やし中華ごまみそだれ

Hiyashi Chuka is a cold Ramen dish served during the hot and humid Summer months in Japan.  When the weather starts getting warm you will see Hiyashi Chuka posters popping up on the walls of every local Ramen shop.  This is a seasonal dish that you will only see during the Summer.  Hiyashi Chuka means "cold Chinese" in Japanese and I like to describe it as a cold ramen salad.  The noodles are the same noodles used in hot ramen but Hiyashi Chuka is topped with chilled fresh vegetables, shredded chicken, ham, roasted pork (Chashu) or seafood and a drizzle of sauce just to coat the ingredients … [Read more...]

Tonjiru ~ Japanese Pork and Vegetable Miso Soup

I am finally posting a Miso Shiru (Soup) recipe.  I  can't believe I have never posted one before!  Well that's changing right now with this post.  Tonjiru is a little different than regular Miso Soup it's kind of like Miso Soup on steroids.  In Japanese Ton means pig and Jiru means soup so this is a pork Miso Soup filled with seasonal vegetables.  I like to call it a Miso Stew.  It is one of my favorite soups to make during the cold Winter months and what I crave when I'm feeling a little under the weather.  I instantly feel better after having a big bowl of comforting Tonjiru. The base of … [Read more...]

Bukkake Udon ぶっかけうどん Japanese Cold Udon Noodles with Various Toppings

We are in the middle of the nicest Summer in Seattle in over fifty years.  Summer is always very beautiful in Seattle but this year we are having the best Summer I've ever experienced. There is an abundance of sunshine (over two months straight) the temperatures are warm but not too hot and the best thing is we don't get the humidity like most places.  The humidity part is why I spend the Summer at our Seattle home.  After growing up in Tokyo and still living there part of the year I stay away from the heat and humidity they get during Summer.  Living in Seattle has turned me into a heat wimp … [Read more...]

Gyudon Japanese Beef Bowl

I'm heading back to Tokyo soon and I'm really in a Donburi mood.  My last post was Katsudon and now I'm going to tell you about another favorite Donburi (Rice Bowl) Gyudon, or Japanese Beef Bowl.  Gyudon chains are scattered throughout Japan but I have never been a fan of chain restaurants and have only eaten at the very popular Gyudon chain Yoshinoya once.  That was enough for me.  Gyudon chains are considered cheap eats in Japan and the meat they use is very low quality. When I first met hubby he was a struggling Engineering student.  He worked and went to school full time and barely had … [Read more...]

Japanese Braised Pork Belly, Buta no Kakuni

This is my favorite Japanese dish ever.  I am serious.  I still remember the first time I tried this dish.  We were at my Mom's friends' restaurant that was ten minutes away from where we lived in Japan.  They owned a traditional, Japanese restaurant that was very popular in our neighborhood and always packed with customers.  We went there often.  I was still in middle school and quite picky about Japanese food.  I preferred western style food when I was a kid so it had to be something really special for me to even try it. My father was the one who always ordered the Buta no Kakuni.  It was … [Read more...]

Gyoza, Japanese Potstickers

Valentines Day and Gyoza?  I say why not?  Nothing shows your love more than feeding someone a perfectly cooked, crispy on the bottom soft and supple on the top, Gyoza dumpling.  Doesn't that sound like a perfect Valentines Day dinner to you?  Just looking at that little package of deliciousness will make anyone smile, especially after they take that first juicy bite. There are a few different types of Gyoza fillings I like to make at home.  The recipe I'm sharing with you is my favorite combination of ingredients and one I find myself making the most.  I grew up eating a very similar style … [Read more...]

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