Tasting the Sweetness and Lightening of Homemade Meat Gyoza


A fair warning to those of you who decide to venture into the delicious world of homemade gyoza: You will be forever ruined once you make or taste homemade gyoza. All other store bought, commercial gyoza will no longer satisfy you. That’s how good homemade gyoza is. You have been warned. Continue reading

Upping Your Yakitori Game with Skewers of Tsukune (Seasoned Ground Chicken on a Stick)

Izakaya - Usagi Drop 04It’s always a fun time going to a yakitori restaurant or izakaya and trying out a ton of interesting little dishes. I mean, meat on a stick is usually a good sign a meal is going to be delicious. And, while grilled chicken skin, barbecued liver, and pieces of cartilage might be fun to sample, what I really love to eat is a little known dish called tsukune.

Tsukune is basically seasoned ground chicken that is coated in a sweet soy sauce-based sauce, grilled, and served hot with a raw egg yolk. It’s tender, flavorful, and, when paired with the egg yolk, rich as well. Did I mention it’s also meat on a stick?? Continue reading

Welcoming Spring with a Helping of Bamboo Rice!

Bamboo rice - Koufuku Graffiti 03 - 03After a long, cold winter, spring has finally sprung where I live, so I really wanted to make a spring-inspired dish to celebrate the change in the weather… but, I wasn’t exactly sure what to cook – that is until I saw episode 3 of Koufuku Graffiti that features a dish called takenoko gohan, or bamboo rice!

When the bamboo plants sends up tender young shoots in the spring, they are harvested, making this dish a springtime favorite… Lightly seasoned and deliciously fragrant, bamboo rice is a simple way to flavor your rice, elevating it from a plain side dish to practically a meal all unto itself. With thin strips of soft aburaage (unseasoned deep fried tofu pouches), tiny fragments of sweet carrot, and the slight crunch of the refreshing and earthy bamboo pieces, eating bamboo rice is a veritable treat. Continue reading

Kabocha Nimono: Another Delicious Staple to Add to Your Bento Recipe Repertoire

Bento kabocha - Shirobako 09

In a previous post, we looked at the Japanese cooking technique referred to as nimono, where vegetables, seafood, tofu, and meats (together or separately) are simmered in a stock flavored with soy sauce, sake, and some sweetening. The resulting dish is light, moist, and succulent, highlighting the flavor of the ingredients rather than smothering them with sauce. So, here we are again, returning to this cooking technique once again, this time with a simple but delicious recipe for kabocha nimono.

In anime, kabocha-ni (the ni is short for nimono) is seen every now and then, usually tucked into a corner of a bento. Some anime that have featured kabocha-ni include Shirobako, Garden of Words (movie), and Koufuku Graffiti! Continue reading

Chicken Karaage: Because Deep Fried Chicken is Awesome!

Karaage fried chicken - Glasslip 02Deep fried to perfection, with a crispy outside and a succulently juicy inside, today I’ll be sharing a recipe for one of my favorite things to eat as an appetizer in a Japanese restaurant: chicken karaage

Karaage refers to a deep frying method where items are seasoned with soy sauce, ginger, and garlic, and then coated in a flour and potato starch mixture. Lightly battered and packed with plenty of flavor, this chicken dish makes for not only a great side dish, but is also a perfect addition to a bento!

Continue reading

Warming the Heart and Body with the Deliciously Robust Tonjiru

Tonjiru with fish - Nagi no Asukara 09Fall has arrived, and with it colder, crisper days await…. And, what better to share with you than a heartwarming, hearty soup recipe?

Soups are an integral part of many Japanese meals, and while the most commonly known soup is the standard but delicious miso soup, there’s more than just one way to prepare a miso-based soup… Today we’ll  be looking at a soup inspired by the anime Nagi no Asukara: tonjiru! Continue reading

Switching up an Old Summertime Favourite with Grilled Miso Butter Corn on the Cob

Roasted Corn - K-On 13 - 02Summertime comes with a host of wonderful things, including warmer weather, beachside barbecues, and a wealth of farm-fresh produce that entices the palate. One of my favourite things to eat at this time of year is corn on the cob, which is delectably sweet and juicy. Usually I just boil it up and eat it with a bit of butter, but lately I’ve been wanting something a bit different… Enter grilled miso butter corn! Continue reading