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Everything posted by easternsun

  1. oh! dont get me started on the okanagan!
  2. boiling down umeboshi or just plain red shiso?interesting....! ← boiling the red shiso helenjp posted a divine recipe that even impressed my MIL! (thanks helen ) click here i really cant keep the stuff in the fridge. everyone loves it! and the colour....luscious fuchsia. simple, gorgeous and tasty. a fine summer beverage.
  3. Thanks, torakris, for the wonderful list. I am wondering if you know any place in Tokyo that sells decaf coffee powder or beans? totoro ← alishan / tengu sells decaf online or by fax/phone order http://www.alishan-organic-center.com/ if all else fails, you can get it at starbucks.
  4. hey folks, i was born and raised in vangroovy. i usually lurk and occasionally post over in "japan" because that is where i hang my hat these days. this site has been incredibly helpful and the vancouver and west forum is just wonderful. i know that if i went home tomorrow i could more than impress the food lovers in my life by being somewhat up-to-date on good eats. i cant believe pho bich nga is closed, how sad! the last time i was home watermark (then unnamed and not yet under construction) was the cause for a big debate one day lounging at kits beach with friends. i bet all those who said it shouldn't have been built were some of its first customers my dilemma: every august i am absolutely possessed by thoughts of home and most if not all of those thoughts revolve around food. today i took my arse for a run and all i could think about was what i would be eating if i was at my other home - VANCITY! so here is a partial list: (some of these places may not exist anymore...some might just be awful ) the hot dog vendor at english bay who seemed to have more condiments than any other vendor in town and on more than one occasion made my run "fun" by convincing me a veggie dog was the equivalent of the protein shake waiting for me at home - negating the run entirely! halibut and chips wrapped in news paper at white rock beach fish and chips in stanley park near "the big log" (well, as much as i could eat before re-enacting a scene from "the birds") drinks after work with my lady friends at cin cin. joe forte's. annual summer bbq with salmon that my dad catches in QCI 3 kick ass samosas for a dollar from the corner grocery prawn burritos from topanga on west fourth - i used to walk there and then ask someone to roll me home.... veggie burgers and turkish coffee from wreck beach. i cant even remember if they tasted good - i am guessing that everything tastes good when you are topless and boozey in the mid day sun chianti (W.4th) for take out (or eat in) pasta. the cannery - does anyone go there anymore? does it still exist? sunday brunch on commerical drive eggs benny with an ocean view! burger and a beer for five bucks at the cambie - highly entertaining and a great bang for your bucks. marios gelati....mario(((((((((((((((((((((damn fine stuff kick ass chinese food. i am up for an east hastings adventure any day! i must stop now as i am salivating all over the keyboard. before i do - i have to add one more: greek food. i dont think i have ever been to a bad greek restaurant in vancouver. there are no greek restaurants in osaka turkish yes, greek no maybe one day i will be home and meet some of you crazy kids. until then, enjoy your summer and your patios and your ocean views. you are very lucky and i envy you (until october when it starts raining everyday )
  5. yes! all the way! ps. i had no idea that okra was so controversial...
  6. sometimes it is not just about time but about availability of ingredients. - and time! i buy some thai goods already mixed up because most days i CANT get some herbs and the thai grocery is half way across town. thai green curry paste from mae ploy and chili sauce with holy basil leaves are my friends i think those bagged salads and pre-cut veggies definitely encourage consumption of greens but everytime i look at them all i can think is bacteria in a bag.
  7. Do you live somewhere that the tap water is not safe to drink without boiling? MelissaH ← I live in Osaka, Japan. They say the water is safe to drink and millions do... I think the tap water tastes terrible. If i go to the next prefecture Nara (30 minutes by train) the tap water is quite delicious. Melissa, I have been lurking in your blog may I for your professional opinion? I have read that boiling water does not remove chlorine from tap water rather it changes it into a carcinogen called trihalomethane. I assume the levels are miniscule. Can you eloborate?
  8. mducky said: "Why is "weight loss" and "slenderness" so single-mindedly the first thing that comes to many people's minds when they see the words "healthy eating?" Surely a person can be skinny but still be setting themselves up for heart disease, diabetes, and ghod knows what else through an unbalanced diet loaded with tons of over-refined carbohydrates, cholesterol and saturated fats, and devoid of anything resembling a fresh vegetable or fruit. I'm not saying that body weight *isn't* a factor--but I am saying that the myopic focus on body weight alone as the prime measure of healthy eating is IMO seriously oversimplistic." an excellent comment mizducky! I am a little late to chime in but I also wanted to suggest you look for a registered yoga therapist. We are trained to deal with problems such as gout and arthritis. I would like to suggest that you visit an ANUSARA or IYENGAR certified instructor – there will definitely be yogis of all shapes, sizes and abilities. These two types of yoga are the best fit for someone dealing with PT. IMHO, yoga CAN help people lose weight, but it's often "through the back door." Unlike other fitness regimes, the point of the yoga asana practice is to reach Samadhi, not weight loss. But, this deals with physical balance and optimal health, so it certainly reaches to the aspect of weight. The real way that yoga helps is by tuning us into our bodies. When we're tuned in to our bodies, we learn how to treat those bodies with a great deal of love and respect. We find that we tend to turn away from excess in our diets, and we also find that we want to be more active in general (beyond our yoga practice) which inspires other physical activities that may help us lose weight in addition to the particular asana practice (assuming we practice a style that encourages this). I know that you did not ask about weight loss and I absolutely agree with the obsession people seem to have with it -- here is my “yogic” take on it: Weight loss has a large body type component (cultural, image-based concept), a hormonal component, a specialization and assimilation component in regards to food, and a myriad of other factors that may be involved. The issue of body type, though, is important to mention. Currently, our culture values the pitta or ectomorphic body type for women (this is the thin, model body type). Second to this, our culture values the muscular body type--the vata or mesomorph (this is the 'ripped six pack abs' body type).Currently, our culture highly devalues the kapha or endomorphic body type. As few as 50 or 60 years ago, our culture preferred the kapha to the vata or pitta. So, what was once considered healthy (kapha) is now considered "fat" and therefore 'Unhealthy.' what was once considered unhealthy (pitta) as 'too skinny' is now considered "thin" and "fit and attractive" and "healthy.' Culturally, women still struggle with the vata body type--getting both compliments and criticism for that sort of body. So a large part of 'being fat' in our current cultural climate is about perception of what we think a body is supposed to look like. ON average, a five foot, seven inch pitta body type will weigh anywhere from 115 to 125 lbs. The vata of the same height will weigh between 130 and 140.The kapha of the same height will weigh between 145 and 155. Each have different skeletal densities, muscle shapes, muscle fiber, and fat distribution. Each person may be perfectly healthy for their body type, but look drastically different. Similarly, the girl who is 145-155 will be told that she's anywhere from 15-40 lbs overweight. The vata will be told that she's probably 'just about right' or about 5-10 lbs overweight. The pitta will be told that she's 'strong, fit' and healthy' even though she may not eat well or exercise--this would just be based on her appearance of 'thinness' which is culturally valued. Part of the 'weight loss' scheme is whether or not an individual needs to loose weight. If a pitta body type is 5 ft, 7 inches and weighs 150 lbs, it's likely that she does need to loose weight--about 25 lbs--and find the diet (caloric intake, macronutrient distribution needs, micronutrient needs) and the right kind of exercise that will keep her motivated and lead to life-long fitness. Yet, if a kapha body type is 150 lbs at the same height, this person likely doesn't need to lose any weight, even though culture, even doctors, would tell her that she should. If this young person were to try to loose weight using a pitta dietary and exercise model, it's likely that the body would go into a hormonal 'starvation' mode, which would cause her to either maintain or gain weight because her body would be striving to hold onto nutrients by creating more body fat to suspend those nutrients until the starvation mode ends. So, it is more complex than 'calories in-calories out." For those who are still dieting, the better question to ask is not 'will I lose weight with this?" but rather, 'will this behavior make me healthy and happy?" If we seek health instead of weight loss, then we will receive health--and a healthy weight.
  9. what about rice pudding made with coconut milk, raisins and nuts? you can use maple syrup instead of sugar in a lot of recipes, i do.
  10. last week i ate chocolate chip cookie dough for dinner. well, i had the cookie dough as an appetizer, followed by hot cookies for a main and broken cookie pieces in vanilla ice cream for dessert. this week i have moved on to dipping pieces of aero chocolate bars into honey roasted peanut butter.
  11. our house has recently become addicted to azuki, banana & soy milk smoothies. yum
  12. i used to drink a lot of volvic. i really like the taste. sometime last year i started feeling guilty about the number of PET bottles i was putting out on recycle day. now i boil my water and pour it through a brita water filter. i save over 1000 yen ($10) a week! i really want one of those total filtration systems but i cant justify the $2000.00. (yet ) my least favourite is without a doubt "contrex". i adore sparkling water but usually dont splurge - a bottle of pelligrino at my local import shop is about 500 yen ($5)
  13. to dumb down the conversation a little ... authentic is when i am sitting in a restaurant in barcelona eating paella or on a beach in thailand eating som tam. or it is when i head to the indian restaurant in my japanese neighbourhood and the staff are all indian
  14. currently in the pantry: coconut milk beans tomatoes (diced) no surprises there. in the fridge i have a can of fois gras (for emergencies )
  15. it seems that healthy village is no longer...does anyone have a new web address as i cant seem to find it
  16. When I worked at an Italian restaurant with a lot of a lot of Cambodian kitchen help, they all did the same thing --only with the dinner rolls - and warmed them up in the pizza oven. Maybe it's an Asian thing. ← Nah, I did the same thing but on Jewish Rye. In fact I spent a summer at sleep away camp where I had one at least once a day, but that is another thread. Chicken skin, turkey skin, duck skin. If I was really lucky I got the tush of the chicken on Friday nights (I can't remember the Yiddish word for it). ← Actually, all my other Asian friends (and non-Asian friends) think I'm off my rocker when I do my bread-butter-sugar bit. Before this forum, I've only met one other person so far (until now!) that did this and she was from Scotland! Wow, I didn't know that non-Asians enjoyed the chicken tail! My father and I love that part of the chicken. Growing up, I never liked it until one day I saw the light. I get flack from my relatives for liking it. OK, would it be strange to admit that I would like to have a meal of salt-roasted chicken tail au jus with rice? ← in my house we called the chicken tail "the pope's nose" - but i have no idea why.... my favourite snack? i didnt get any snack foods or junk foods. honestly, saturdays and sundays, we ate eggs benedict and that has to be my ultimate. i wanted to eat all those junk foods but i would not disobey mom. and mom did not make ANYTHING junk foodish or "bad" for me. i still dont know what a hostess twinkie tastes like. i grew up drinking milk and occassionally, fresca as a treat. i ate diet yoghurt until i was an adult (ok, until last year) . my weakness - the one thing that i indulge in about once or twice a month - white, squishy, soft bread and i think the only reason that i do it, is because i was never allowed to eat it! i want to be the nana who makes bacon fat sandwiches and lets you eat raw dough bits!
  17. hello and thank you! what a great blog. i had to stop after the second page and head to the shop for refreshments as i knew i was in it for the long haul. the photos are amazing. the banter is amusing. it is just a pleasure to share this week with you both. may i ask what is in the dipping sauce for the pa jun? also, if possible, i would really like the corn recipe from the first day. you are both winners in my mind.
  18. beeeeeautiful pic episure! thanks! i like the direct flame method - cook 25% - you got me ! how long is that or what am i looking for in the bread? thanks for the reply and the picture. i really think that chapati /chappati? \ chapatti is one of those practice makes perfect things..fits in quite well as that is the theme for the rest of my life one more thing...is roti the same thing? i remember when i was a kid the neighbours were from india and they called their bread roti - is that a northern thing? or a different bread?
  19. i think that everyone has a different idea of what is the BEST but i will tell you one place that i frequent. it is called tako-tako okonomi blues bar.... it is on the south side of suomachi-suji close to sakai-suji. (in the shinsaibashi area) it is a tiny place! it think they have three tables and a small counter. the menu is not in english though i am sure the ultra friendly staff will help you out there is always one staff member selling tako-yaki on the street and yelling quite loud so you should be able to find it without much effort. great okonomi, yummy tako-yaki with a choice of sauces and great teppan. hotate/aspara is delicious (scallops and aparagus). some of the other best takoyaki is from the little old ladies on the street. i am never fearful of street food in osaka. for luxury okonomi, you can always go to president chibo. i dont really think it is any better but it is a little upscale compared to some of the local shops. look for this お好み焼き sign and you will find okonomiyaki! now you have to decide how you will eat your takoyaki...ponzu, shoyu, mayo, nori, katsuo....try them all of you can and dont be afraid to ask the vendor for "hanbun/hanbun"......half with one sauce and half with another. enjoy! oh here is a link to some restaurants in kansai
  20. kristin with all the good work you do here - maybe you should be a cookbook editor in japan! happy anniversary and have a great meal at shunju (when the foot is better!)
  21. i have not seen the cookbook ...but i do love shunju! it is one of my favourite places in both osaka and tokyo. the osaka restaurant in shinsaibashi has a really extensive sake collection. that is the place that turned me off of astukan (hot sake) - now i know how much better it is cold. i always find the staff helpful and i have never had any problems. the food is always amazing and fresh. any thoughts on why the cookbook recipes dont work?
  22. does anyone remember the flaming moe episode? i just remember the girl comes in to apply for a job and says: i am here about the sign moe replies: the one that says bartenders do it til you barf she replies: no the one above it (which says helo wanted) what was the secret ingredient in a flaming moe?
  23. last night i ate a superbly simple sandwich: a baguette brushed with EVOO, marinated, grilled eggplant (honestly i prefer the term aubergine - sexy veg), plum tomatoes, rocket (arugula/rucola) and camembert cheese. yum it was the best thing in my mouth all week.
  24. my mom was born in barrie -- i cant think of one family event that didnt involve her pulling out the special deviled egg plate! it looks something like this i am glad i am not the only one who knows about the deviled eggs. i am sure that if i went home tomorrow mom or gram would have a dozen eggs on the boil for my welcome home dinner happy blogging!
  25. i have been following along...apparently in my sleep too! last night i dreamt that i won $42,000 at the kentucky derby thanks for the great blog! i hope i dont dream about that pig's head tonight and i promise i will never drink jd again - makers mark for my next julip i reckon
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