X

Articles

An Evening of Umami and Shokuiku

Hills Learning 0 691 Article rating: No rating

Last night I had the opportunity to interpret for Chef Kiyomi Mikuni at an event at Japan Society entitled “Umami and Other Japanese Culinary Secrets.” Mikuni is an entertaining speaker whose wide-ranging presentation covered everything from how important it is to develop taste buds at a young age to working with Japanese children on 食育 (shokuiku, or dietary education). Mikuni runs the gourmet French restaurant Hotel de Mikuni in Tokyo, but his culinary journey started in a fishing village ...

和食

Hills Learning 0 349 Article rating: No rating

This weekend I had the chance to check out the documentary Washoku at Cinema Village, where it will be playing through the end of the month.  It features interviews with sushi chefs and other Japanese food proprietors, and asks them about their philosophy, preparation and overall view of Japanese food.  Many of them in talk in detail about the sacrifices they make for their craft, and how much pride they have in their work.  This film is truly a must see for all washoku lovers. One of the ...

Food Culture - Ramen

Hills Learning 0 424 Article rating: No rating

One of the best ways to learn about a culture is through food. It's a way for you to eat delicious meal while also learning about the country from which the dish originates. Ramen (ラーメン or らーめん) is a perfect example of this food culture. It's one of Japan's most well-known foods, aside from sushi. The Brief History of Ramen Types of Ramen Where to Get Ramen? How to Make Your Own Ramen! The Brief History of Ramen Though ramen is most associated with Japan, it actually came ...

Japan Town in New York? Why, it's St. Marks Place

Hills Learning 1 407 Article rating: No rating

A lot of our readers and students of the Japanese language have all been to "Japan Town" in New York City. However, if you look on a map or read a guidebook, there's no official listing of Japan Town in New York. There's definitely a Chinatown and Koreatown (Koreatown is actually written on 32nd street) so where's the Japan Town? And why has it been called that? The "where" is easy to explain. St. Marks Place is actually another term for East 8th Street. The "Japan Town" location is ...

Sakura Mochi, Tokyo Style

Hills Learning 0 567 Article rating: No rating

Hi All, I promised to have this entry ready a few weeks ago. I'm so sorry for the delay. You know how some things don't go as planned. But, without further ado... Sakura (桜), cherry blossom trees, are the true sign of spring in Japan and their beauty has been revered by the Japanese for centuries. Each year, when the trees blossom, millions sit under their shade to eat, drink and make merry. The blossoms and leaves themselves are edible and are used in some traditional Japanese ...

Asian Food Blog: Springtime Sweets

Hills Learning 0 398 Article rating: No rating

The newest addition to the Hills Learning blog - Asian Food Blog A section devoted to introducing Asian dishes and giving step by step instruction for fool-proof Asian cooking. Since the weather is warming up and signs of spring are popping up all around, I thought it would nice to introduce some deliciously light sweets from China, Japan and Korea. This entry will quickly introduce each of the desserts, and over the next three weeks, the recipe for each dish will be explained. So if you ...

Konbini – Convenience Stores in Japan

Hills Learning 0 971 Article rating: 5.0

Oh, how I love the konbini (コンビニ: it’s short for “convenience store” in English). Whether it’s Lawson, 7 Eleven, AM/PM, or Family Mart, they’re a reliable place in Japan for late night snacks, booze, and even a full meal. Plus you can also pay your bills there! Items are packed just so, and potentially embarasing hygiene items are double and even triple-bagged using opaque brown paper so that no one will be the wiser. I now present to you a brief rundown of some of my favorite konbini ...

Osechi – New Year’s Food in Japan

Hills Learning 0 504 Article rating: No rating

Special dishes known as osechi-ryouri (御節料理 or お節料理) are served on New Year’s in Japan. Large stackable boxes known as juubako (重箱) hold the food, and the dishes can stay good for several days since osechi are traditionally eaten through January 3rd. Cooking was finished by New Year’s Eve since long ago it was forbidden to cook during the first three days of the new year. These days, many people purchase osechi in stores since the cooking process is long and difficult, and waiting ...

American Fast Food In Japan

Hills Learning 0 820 Article rating: No rating

Okay, I’ll admit it, I’m a sucker for junk food. Since living in New York, my consumption of fast food has gone up dramatically, despite the wide array of quality food here. Now I’m not advocating that you visit McDonald’s or any of these other restaurants while in Japan, but sometimes you just gotta eat. Here is a list of some of the major differences you’ll find between your US fast food place and that same burger joint in Japan. McDonald’s – マクドナルド One of the most obvious differences ...

Fugu: A (Sometimes) Deadly Delicacy

Hills Learning 0 537 Article rating: No rating

After 11 people were poisoned by pufferfish in Toyama last week, I thought I would take some time to talk about the full fugu (河豚 – blowfish, pufferfish) dinner in Japan. My host mother just recently returned from such a meal, thankfully unharmed. What can you expect at such a pricey dinner? The full fugu experience can cost upwards of $200, so here is a guide to make sure you know what you’re getting into. Tessa (てっさ): Fugu sashimi Raw fugu sashimi (刺身) is a delicacy, and ...

Ryouri o tsukurimashou! Sweet Potatoes

Hills Learning 0 509 Article rating: No rating

(For more information on where these recipes came from and more Japanese cooking vocabulary, check out my previous posts for Yellowtail Teriyaki, Cashew Chicken, Roast Chinjao, and Tonkatsu!) Did you read about Fall foods in Japan yet? If you have, you’ll notice that the first food listed is sweet potatoes. Have you ever wondered how to make them into a dessert, Japanese style? Read on and learn how! スイートポテト – Sweet Potatoes Yield: 4 ...

Ryouri o tsukurimashou! Tonkatsu

Hills Learning 0 541 Article rating: No rating

Here is another recipe from the Nintendo cooking game しゃべる!DSお料理ナビ. To catch up on Japanese cooking vocabulary, be sure to check out my previous recipes (Yellowtail Teriyaki, Cashew Chicken, and Roast Chinjao). This time, it’s a popular dish found at many Japanese restaurants all over the world. It’s tonkatsu, which is a thin, deep-fried cutlet of pork. Also, the vocabulary section is a little different than usual. After our hiragana lessons, you should be able to read hiragana, so no ...

Ryouri o tsukurimashou! Roast Chinjao

Hills Learning 0 431 Article rating: No rating

(Note: Please check out the recipes for Yellowtail Teriyaki and Cashew Chicken for more useful Japanese cooking vocabulary!) More Nintendo cooking, and once again we have a rather Chinese dish, but it’s very well-known in Japan. Next time I will feature something more traditionally Japanese. Any requests? We’ve gotten through a lot of cooking words with the past two recipes, so if you see words here you don’t recognize, check back in the links posted above. With that said, let’s get ...

Fall Foods in Japan

Hills Learning 1 539 Article rating: No rating

America has some favorite fall foods like pumpkins and candy apples, and Japan is no different with certain dishes and ingredients strongly associated with autumn. How many have you tried? Satsuma-imo (薩摩芋): Sweet potato These are very similar to yams, though the flesh is softer and the inside is more yellow than orange. The outside is often purplish in color, and satsuma-imo are often used in tempura or candied as a dessert (pictured). In Kyoto, I often heard the loud, ...

Ryouri o tsukurimashou! Cashew Chicken

Hills Learning 3 431 Article rating: No rating

It’s time for another edition of Nintendo cooking! Be sure to check out this post for background about where this recipe came from, and more useful cooking vocabulary which will be built upon in this post. This is technically a Chinese dish, but this is a Japanese version of it complete with ingredients like red miso paste. Just as Chinese, Japanese, Italian, etc. food has been Americanized in many places here in the US, so foreign recipes are “Japanified” to appeal to local palates in ...

Japanese Grocery Stores in New York

Hills Learning 0 386 Article rating: No rating

How can you make Japanese or other Asian recipes without the right ingredients? Large US grocery chains often have an “international” aisle, but the pickings are usually slim. But there are many small Japanese grocery stores in Manhattan and the other boroughs, as well as several online resources available for those who don’t feel like traveling to a brick-and-mortar store. Many Chinese or Korean markets also have a lot of common Japanese ingredients for cheaper prices, so it’s probably best ...

RSS

Categories