Or Homer Simpson: "I've discovered a new meal between breakfast and brunch".
I like the way you think. I am pretty sure I need a pre-breakfast as well. Reminds me of that quote from Lord of the Rings: "I don't think he's heard of second breakfast, Pip."
Smallworld, thank you for sharing your week of food-related activities. I also appreciate the detailed biography - it sure helps tell the story. (BTW I went to Brampton Centennial Secondary School for five years - there were five grades of high school back then).
I often find myself wishing there were more meals in a day. I think Homer and the Hobbits have it right.
There were still 5 years when I went too. The four year system was brand-new and I was the only one of my friends to finish quickly, which I regret. They stayed on and had fun and I was plunged into the real world, which wasn't as fun as I'd imagined. I went to Central Peel by the way.
Wow, the color in that food is amazing! Maybe it's because it is still very much winter here (we got six inches of snow yesterday), but I find it very cheerful. I can't ever recall eating anything that had quite that kind of neon glow to it.
The store-bought chirashi-zushi certainly did have a neon glow! I think the fish roe was its natural colour but I find the bright pink of the sakura dembu to be a bit gross. I do think that in general there is a lot of importance placed on colour in Japanese cuisine, although it is usually a bit more subtle than that sushi.
I'm curious to know what the reason is for avoiding imports, if you care to share. Is it something most people in Japan would try to do?
I try to avoid imports as much as I can, which can be expensive. Stuff like lemons and kabocha squash are easily grown in Japan but the imports are usually more widely available and are sold for half the price--or better--of their domestic counterparts.
It's just sensible to buy local: there's less pollution from shipping, it's usually fresher and tastier, and it supports the local economy. I've always thought that way about certain things, like bottled water (I'd never buy Evian unless I was actually in France, for example) but since getting used to Japanese cooking I've really noticed the difference in quality between domestics and imports. Not that non-Japanese produce is inferior, it's just that it loses so much on the journey here.
I have an environmental streak which I will discussing soon, I hope.
Great blog so far! so do you speak Japanese fluently? Also, are you working in Japan? Looking forward to where the week takes us.
Ah geez, I wrote that long introduction and still managed to forget stuff! Yes, I work part-time teaching English, mostly from home. This week I have a very light schedule, luckily.
I'm not fluent, even after all these years. I'm terrible with languages-- after 6 years of studying French (grades 4 to 10) I couldn't even remember how to answer "Comment ca va?" the last time I went to Quebec. I've never formally studied Japanese, so I'm just learning as I'm going. I know enough to get by and can survive most simple conversations, but anything complicated and I'm lost.
Since getting married my biggest Japanese language input has been from my husband. So naturally I pick things up from him, but because men and women speak a bit differently here it's a bit of a problem. I go around saying "dekai" (big) instead of the proper "ookii", or "umai" (delicious) instead of "oishii" until someone corrects me. I'm sure foreign spouses of both genders can relate to this.
I can read as well as I can speak, which is a bit unusual because the written language here far more difficult than the spoken language (I've met plenty of non-Japanese who are fluent or near fluent speakers but completely illiterate). I learned to read at first by going to karaoke with friends (I hate karaoke, so I'd just sit there and watch the words on the screen), and then with Japanese cookbooks and cooking magazines. Now I'm fine with most recipes, I can understand most of the stuff on food packages, and menus are mostly no problem. But I still run into problems occasionally, and there's no way I can understand a newspaper or anything not food (or karaoke) related.
I'm going to a pho place tomorrow in Fujisawa that I've gotten a strong recommendation from some co-workers about. I'm a pretty harsh critic, having lived in Vietnam, so I'll let you know how it turns out. Are you the sort of person who'll make a field trip for good noodles?
Without eGullet, I don't think I could have survived my first few months in Japan financially! What resources have you used to learn Japanese techniques and recipes?
I wouldn't go all the way to Fujisawa just for pho, but I'd make a detour if I was already out that way. Let me know how it is.
The most useful resource has been NHK's "Kyo no Ryouri". Watching the shows while following along in the monthly magazines helped me both learn to read and learn to cook. It is the best cooking show and food magazine and they really do everything right. EGullet has also been helpful, but I didn't discover it until I'd already learned the basics.
Btw, I'd never heard of a panzarotti until I moved here. I was very familar with calzone's though. I think the difference is that a calzone has ricotta( at least mine do as does every calzone I've ever had at a restaurant) and a panzarotti doesnt.
where we would eat panzarotti (which doesn’t seem to exist in the rest of the world—is it the same thing as calzone?)
To me, a panzarotti is like a folded pizza.
Thanks! So maybe panzarottis are a Canadian thing. I wonder if both panzarotti and calzone derived from the same dish in Italy, or if they are based on separate foods, or if one or both are just completely made up?
*Oh my, none of the quotes are working and I can't seem to fix it. I hope this isn't too hard to read...
Edited by smallworld, 03 March 2008 - 04:47 PM.