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Everything posted by jeniac42

  1. I've been wanting to make one of the pictorial dishes for a long time, and last night I finally tried this one because I had everything on hand. It was really good. I used brown sugar because I don't have a microwave and didn't feel like dealing with maltose... Eric really loved it but I thought it was a little too sweet for me. I think next time I will add a little bit of soy sauce to it, or maybe use less sugar. I put the leftovers (with steamed jasmine rice) in my bento for today's lunch:
  2. I finally made the Orange Page pork and kimchi donburi last night. ( 豚キムチ丼) I think it was worth the time it took to translate it and I would recommend it to anyone. Thanks to everyone for their help!
  3. I finally made the pork and kimchi donburi (豚キムチ丼) from Orange Page. It was really delicious and I will definitely be making it again, although I don't think I used enough kimchi.
  4. I don't want to generalize here, because I've certainly not spoken with every employee of the fish and meat sections at the WF near my house but.... They have been completely unwilling to do special orders, and fairly unknowledgeable about anything I've tried to ask after. I bought fish there once; it was the same farm-raised Atlantic salmon available at my local megasupermarket, only $3 more/lb, and they didn't even know how to cut it properly. I will give them credit for having good beef, but I rarely shop there. Also, shrinkwrapped cheese? What the hell. Seriously.
  5. OK, so it's been a long while since I had anything better than a point-and-shoot camera. This week Amazon was having a sale, so I got a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ20 to play with. Since I'm at my office, the most interesting thing available to photograph was a steak and potato pizza in its delivery box. Like I said, it's been a long time since I did any real photography, so I'd be interested in any comments on this photo. I used aperture priority at f/2.8 to try to achieve some depth of field. It proved extremely difficult; this might partially have been due to the fact that I'm just learning to use the camera. Focal length was, apparently, 19.4mm; I used the flash to try to compensate for the fluorescent lighting and let the camera auto-focus on the large piece of, um, steak on the right before framing the shot. I wanted to crop out the back, where you can see the pizza box edge, but if I'd done that I'd have lost what little DOF I did have. I'm hoping to get more into food photography; at any rate, here's my contribution to keeping this thread hoppin' for now:
  6. Yes it does. Natsukashii is one of my favorite Japanese words and I wish we had a good equivalent in English. ← Does it have a different feeling than the English "nostalgic"? To keep this vaguely on topic, I will admit that I have yet to ever buy a bottle of Kewpie mayo - something I will remedy this weekend when I again visit/bother my favorite Japanese shopkeepers. Also, I want one of those マヨマニアTシャツ!!
  7. Thank you. That was very helpful and made it a lot less overwhelming when considering my options. Since chopstick rests are only used for formal dining... what do you normally do with your chopsticks if you need to set them down while eating? I usually balance mine across the top of my donburi-sized bowl. I like those. I have also been looking on eBay and here are some examples of chawan I think are nice: Iga or Shigaraki style Irabo style Hagi style I think they are quite expensive but since I will be buying pieces slowly I feel I don't mind that too much. By lacquerware chopsticks I think I meant what you said, Hiroyuki. For example: these seem quite nice but again quite expensive. I also think it must cost more to buy these items here than it would in Japan, but I'm not likely to be able to afford a trip to Japan for another year at least, and I'm too impatient! But thank you all for your advice so far. It's really helpful and of course I will certainly be posting pictures of whatever I do end up buying, with food in them of course! I also got a new cookbook last night, called Harumi's Japanese Cooking by Harumi Kurihara, and she spends a couple of pages discussing plates as well.
  8. Bastardized? It's simply a different food and should be considered on its own merits. If there we laws againt "bastardizing" foods, then there would little incentive to be creative. Homogeneity in food is not necessarily a good thing. ← I fully endorse what your saying, however, there are certain dishes that should be 'ring fenced' from these alleged 'creators', the noble pizza being one of them. Creativity in food is a highly subjective issue and it's different stokes etc, nevertheless the 'art' of pizza creation is no more now than slopping on any topping that comes to mind on to bases of wildly varying quality with a few crust tricks from the corporate players. The simple pizza is a beautiful thing - LEAVE IT ALONE ← Maybe it would help if we called it ピザ instead, which would be pronounced pee-zah, thus circumventing the argument over whether it is Admissible as Pizza. To stay on topic, I am presently eating a piece of ピザ that might go over well in Japan - garlic butter, shrimp, imitation crab meat, mushrooms, onions, and tomatoes - all it needs is mayo and salmon roe, don't you think? It came from the Turkish pizza place downtown, and it's delicious.
  9. I started the this thread with the above post and now yesterday (almost 3 years later) I am in possesion of Pizza Hut's latest flyer. They have taken the sausage stuffed crust to a new level! Now the sausage in the crust is left partly exposed that that it gets "crunchier", and if that wasn't enough they have also added a layer of cheese and bacon under the sausage! Check it out here! ← Oh. My. It's like Extreme Cocktail Wieners masquerading as pizza crust. At least Japanese pizzas tend to be on the small side (or so I hear)... so you wouldn't do so much damage to your arteries....
  10. No, I didn't! I forgot to buy the beni shouga while I was at the store. I'll be making gyudon again soon (I still have two slices of beef in my freezer) and I'll be sure to buy the beni shouga before I do.
  11. They sell durian at one of the grocery stores around here. I am afraid to try it, although I did once have a pastry from a Chinese bakery with a durian filling, and found it to be OK though slightly... hm. Gasoline-tasting? It had a strange aroma that got up into the back of my sinuses and made me think it wasn't something I should be eating.
  12. I would like to build a small collection of Japanese dishes. I'm interesting in buying nice things that are fairly nice. The only plates I own at the present time are Noritake bone china, if that gives you any idea of how concerned I am about dishwasher-safe and microwaveable (That is to say, I own neither a dishwasher nor a microwave, so it doesn't matter.) The Japanese grocery store near my house only has a small selection of items; the one in Columbus has a larger selection, although last time I was there, I don't remember seeing anything that seemed really nice. By "nice", I'm not sure what I mean. I guess I am looking for things that are handmade in traditional ways. The problem is, I don't know what to look for. I have tried to find some basic information but everything seems so detailed and overwhelming! For example, I would like to get a nice pair of chopsticks. Is lacquerware the best? Also, I don't understand all the different types of pottery or what I should look for. I know there is no easy answer to this question, but any guidance is appreciated. Also, if anyone knows where to get such nice things in the US, pointers are welcome. Jason, the items you have are gorgeous but unfortunately slightly more than I am able to spend at the present. In the interests of full disclosure, I posted this same question on my blog, but since it's in (bad) Japanese I thought I would ask here as well. Oh, and another question: Are chawan used as rice bowls? Or are they only used for tea?
  13. Yes, I have a pair of saibashi that I bought for US $0.99... they're 45cm long! It's still hard for me to use them, so I have to practice more! Is the "One Point"/ワンポイント a popular theme in Japanese magazines and web sites? Now that I've noticed it on that site, I have seen it in the Orange Page several times as well.
  14. Hm, I am not sure. Those don't look quite right. This salad doesn't have any cucumber in it. I found a picture by searching for chuka wakame (中華 若布) but the page it is on is no longer there, so there is no recipe! Maybe the picture will help, though. Here is a link to the picture. The seaweed does look more like the kiri kombu type, but I'm still not sure. This is a very common dish in Japanese restaurants in my area of the US, so you would think it would be easier to find a recipe!
  15. Thanks, Kris. The beef was really good quality. I think it was probably ribeye, but the taste was excellent. I only made two servings and used about 100g of beef but it still added so much flavor to the dish. Even my picky boyfriend thought it tasted really good. Tonight I think I am going to make the buta-kimuchi donburi I found in the Orange Page (finally)....
  16. I really love the bright green seaweed salad with sesame seeds and sometimes chili peppers added to it. However, I have been totally unable to find a recipe for it - just a lot of sites selling it already made. I am not sure of the name; I have seen goma wakame, chuka wakame, hiyashi wakame.... The Japanese grocery store sells it already-made, but I would prefer to make it myself. Does anyone have a recipe for it? The thing is, the wakame in the salad does not seem similar at all to the wakame in, for example, miso soup. Instead it has an almost crunchy texture and is bright green instead of the muddy dark green. Edited to add that a recipe in Japanese is fine, as well.
  17. Kim, I can understand where you're coming from, wanting to try a career in the food industry, and I can also understand rjwong's concern that it might be a "grass is greener" situation. I made a post some time ago at the point when I was probably most embittered about my career change. I have since left the restaurant industry; too many frustrations and too much tendonitis. I was 25 at the time. In retrospect, I think it really wasn't for me. I was (and still am) too much of an idealist; I guess I expected to work in some magical place where everyone felt as passionate about food as I did. The conclusion I reached is that it's better for me to pursue food as a hobby, where I can have control over the quality of the product. If I had worked in different restaurants/bakeries, it may have been different. On one hand, I feel like a quitter and like maybe I should've stuck it out. On the other, I've sort of realized that I am more cut out for the academic career path I'm currently pursuing. Unfortunately, as I'm sure you know, work is work, and as other folks have pointed out, there's always going to be at least one part of it that sucks. I am concerned because you said you don't want to sell things - a big part of being a server is selling to the customers. All that said, if you feel it's something you really want to do, give it a try.
  18. I tried natto for the first time last night. I bought some individual-sized cups on Friday but it took me a while to work up the courage to actually eat it. It came with small packets of soy sauce and mustard. I stirred it up and took a bite and... I think it tastes kind of like coffee. I couldn't finish the whole serving. The slimy texture and strange taste were just too weird for me. But I have two more servings left. Maybe I'll get used to it...
  19. I made gyudon for dinner on Friday night, following a recipe from one of the sites Hiroyuki linked in the cooking video thread. It was very simple to make and very delicious. I am not sure I translated the recipe exactly right, but here is my translation in case anyone else would like to make it. It's probably easier just to watch the video, though! When I say tablespoons below, I mean the Japanese 15ml tablespoons. Ingredients for 4 servings. Cooked rice, 800g Sliced beef, 280g Onion (yellow bulb type), 1 medium Green onions, 2 pieces Seasoning broth: Dashi, 1 cup Soy sauce, 3 1/2 tablespoons Mirin, 2 tablespoons Sake, 2 tablespoons Sugar, 1 tablespoon Cut the onion in half and slice thinly. Cut the root off of the green onions and slice into 3-4cm lengths. Cut the beef into 3-4cm wide pieces. Put the mirin and sake into a pot and put on a burner. Once it reaches a boil, add the sugar, soy sauce, and dashi. When the mixture is boiling, add the onion. Once the onion has softened, add the beef.  Cook, separating the beef slices with chopsticks(?). Once the beef is cooked, add the green onions and cook. Put the cooked rice in a bowl. Place the beef and onion mixture on top. Here is a picture of the finished dish. My camera is going bad, so the picture isn't very good.
  20. Chocolate. And cheese. (Please, someone else make the Ween reference.)
  21. You're right; expensive bottled water is certainly the best complement to any pastry course.
  22. I have been putting the numbers into Excel for my own comparison purposes (it's very difficult for me to keep track of numbers in my head). It's not a very good spreadsheet, and in some cases I have been unsure of measurements or how to make the data fit; basically I have rows for each category, with all beef together, all bacon together, etc; the columns are for country/currency/measurement; city or region; source (store name and type); USD/unit; local currency/unit; notes (organic, type of beef, type of apple, etc); and the eGullet member name of the person who posted the information. I am not a statistician or even anyone who uses Excel in a scientific or competent fashion, but if anyone would like a copy I have it. I am also planning to enter information about food cost from other threads as I run across it. Also, if anyone who IS competent has any suggestion for how I might improve my data collection (or a better spreadsheet), please let me know. Obviously this is a very fascinating topic for me...
  23. Thanks, Hiroyuki. I believe it had an "ama-kara" flavor. I'm sorry I wasn't more clear. It's been a few years since I even ate this dish, so I can't remember all the details! I'll give that a try next weekend. If I prepare it in the way Hiroyuki mentioned, would it be called "kyara-warabi"? Also, should I use baking soda to reduce bitterness in reconstituted warabi, or is that only necessary for fresh warabi?
  24. Some of you may remember that I was trying to identify a vegetable in a salad I had been served. I posted about it but can no longer find the thread. It turns out that it was, actually, dried warabi (hoshi warabi). Does anyone know of a recipe for this? I believe it had sugar in it, and was probably just a vinegar-dressed salad. I saw the hoshi warabi today at the Korean grocery store and I plan to buy it soon. I don't think I can get fresh warabi here.
  25. I also have the Zojirushi 5-cup neuro fuzzy rice cooker. I use it more often for just myself than I do for myself and my boyfriend, but it works well either way. I do find that I need to make at least 2 cups (rice-cooker cups, aka gou, aka 180ml) for best results. But the keep warm function works very well, and I take rice for lunch each day so it's not too much of a problem to eat that much.
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