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What Japanese dishes would you like to see


torakris
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I just had a very interesting discussion with a reader of these forums and she suggested writing a cookbook on the dishes that the Japanese really eat.

Pick up any Japanese cookbook and you are likely to see the same recipes over and over. Teriyaki, tempura, yakitori, miso soup, etc.

I can't recall seeing recipes in English language books for things like omuraisu. curry rice, anpan, takoyaki, even karaage and the Japanese hambagu. Yet these are the kinds of foods the Japanese eat everyday but if you have never traveled to the country you may never have heard of.

What dishes have you never seen in a cookbook that you would love to have a recipe for?

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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Are you thinking of writing a Japanese cookbook, Kristin?

What I'd really like to see in English is one on Japanese snacks and desserts -- anpan, melon pan, Japanese cheesecake, yatsuhashi senbei (fresh and baked), some of the more common wagashi items. I'd write it myself, but I don't have the wherewithal to live in Japan to do the research.

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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I had been thinking about it for a good 2 years now... I was thinking of using the Daily Nihongo thread as a base and writing something of an encyclopedia of Japanese foods with a couple recipes, but I think I like this idea better. :biggrin:

I have already thought about dividing the book up into sections.

1. Dishes the Japanese really eat (including discussions/rankings of most popular dinner meals and kyushoku meals)

-curry

-mapodofu

-karage

-nikujyaga

(this maybe divided into yoshoku-western foods, chuuka-Chinese foods and washoku-Japanese foods)

2. Local specialities that have become popular all over Japan

-goya champuru

-miso katsu

3. "Classic" dishes that the Japanese love but are forgetting how to make, these are the popular sozai (prepared dishes) that everyone picks up in the department store basement or supermarket

-goma-ae

-shira-ae

-various seaweed dishes

4. Snacks and desserts

- basically everything Suzy just mentioned :biggrin:

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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I just had a very interesting discussion with a reader of these forums and she suggested  writing a cookbook on the dishes that the Japanese really eat.

Pick up any Japanese cookbook and you are likely to see the same recipes over and over. Teriyaki, tempura, yakitori, miso soup, etc.

I can't recall seeing recipes in English language books for things like omuraisu. curry rice, anpan, takoyaki, even karaage and the Japanese hambagu. Yet these are the kinds of foods the Japanese eat everyday but if you have never traveled to the country you may never have heard of.

What dishes have you never seen in a cookbook that you would love to have a recipe for?

And add some nice stuff like chawan mushi and good curry dishes.

Best regards

Gilbert

Food blog - www.otal.dk

Best regards,

Gilbert

Food blog - www.floss.dk

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I would love to buy this type of book. Like OnigiriFB, I too am frustated by the fact recipes only list umeboshi as a filling. I would love lots of seaweed recipes, served both hot and cold. Also, I think it would be great to have a pickle section. I love Japanese pickled vegetables. I also think it would be great to include an overview of how the Japanese construct a well-rounded meal, I.e. the starch, soup, protein, etc.

Preach not to others what they should eat, but eat as becomes you and be silent. Epicetus

Amanda Newton

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how the Japanese construct a well-rounded meal, I.e. the starch, soup, protein, etc.

Of course, that should be described early in the book.

Staple (starch)

Soup (usually miso soup)

protein (shusai)

and vitamins and others (fukusai)

that is, ichiju sansai! :biggrin:

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oh dear, the book is getting bigger and bigger...

I am not a pickle person, though I may add some really quick and easy versions that I do at home quite a bit.

I will save the pickle book for Helen. :biggrin:

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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This is the list that one member sent to me on recipes she would like to see in a cookbook:

Mabodofu and other popular Japanese School Lunches

Oden

MORE Nabes

Kushi Dango and other mochis

Nikujaga

Okonomiyaki

An-pan

Yuba and other Tofu things

Those interesting Strawberry Omelets

The Omelet thingy with the Ketchup Rice

The chicken salad with the cucumber and jellyfish

Burdock, Crysanthemum, Shiso, and Kabocha

Goma-Ae

A section on how to learn to love Natto

Hijiki Salad (the carrot and Hijiki one)

Konnyaku Steak

Tonnkatsu

Warabi Mochi

Japanese Kimchi Nabe

A section on the joys of Konnyaku

Japanese Sweet Potato Recipes

Seaweed Salads

Okinawan Cooking (especially Goya Chanpuru)

Curry Rice

Wafu Dressing

Spaghetti Naporitan

New Years recipes! Especially those with Mochis.

All traditional Japanese Holiday foods

Chestnut rice

Ohagi

Sweet Red Bean Soup with Mochi

Red and White bean pastes

All the different PANs in Japan, IE Melon and Curry Pan etc

Takoyaki

ANYTHING that is daily family and fun and easy to grab...

I really love the idea on a whole section of how to love natto!

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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Hmmmm.... I can't think of much in particular that hasn't been mentioned so far.

I think I'd just want a guide on how to use Japanese ingredients to give anything a Japanese flavour - making miso based sauces for frying vegetables or making soup out of anything. Tips on how to use sake, mirin, shouyu (like not buring it!).

I can easily make Japanese dishes if I follow the recipe, but my Japanese flatmate can just take whatever we have in fridge and make something that "tastes Japanese".

I'd probably also like to things like Japanese spaghetti (shellfish sauces, nattou spaghetti etc.)

Also like to see some cheating methods. I have a Japanese book for cooking cheap and easy meals for 365 days. It's really good, it has things like easy ways to make buta no kakuni, mixing katakuriko into the water when frying gyouza so they all come off the pan together, and various ways to cheat on dishes.

Torakris, if you do make a book, you definately have to include your nikujyaga recipe. That's the recipe that really got me started in Japanese cooking. It always comes out great and I always get "Oh! It tastes just like my mum's!" from Japanese friends.

A lot of Japanese books are just nice to look at, but focus too much on presentation. Most people would only ever make a couple of dishes out of them. This book sounds like a really good idea.

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This is a brilliant idea. Especially the suggestion above about how to put together a regular meal - what soup, side dishes, etc. should be served. I especially like the idea of having recipes for salads and side dishes.

Also, how about a recipe for tonkatsu sauce? I'd love to be able to make that from scratch.

Maybe some photos in the books of typical ingredients, with captions? I'd love to make Japanese food here in Vietnam, but all of the ingredients available are labeled only in Japanese, so I have no idea what kind of tofu is which, what mirin looks like, what a yuzu looks like...(is it a citron?), and so on.

This would be useful for foreigners moving to Japan, too, I think. I remember being so frustrated when I moved to Korea, because there I was surrounded by Korean ingredients for Korean everyday foods, but I couldn't put any together, because I didn't know how to do it, how to organize panchan, etc., and had to waste a lot of money buying expensive imported foods because it was all I knew how to cook with. And then I'd ask a Korean friend, "You know, how do I make dweonjang-jigae?" and they'd look at me much like I imagine an American would look at someone who asked them, "How do I make a peanut butter sandwich?"

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Kristen,

Were you thinking of self-publishing this? Everyone sounds real excited about this but (to me) it looks like it might be hard to sell to an editor. Once you get things figured out a little more, a good exercise is to make a mock-up of pages or an excel file and rough out what will go on every page and figure out just how you want the book to be, then figure out how you can simply explain the book so that anyone can easily imagine what it will be like, that will give you a more solid base to stand on if you are trying to sell the idea to a publisher. Please ignore this advice if you've already got someone interested or if you are going to publish it yourself. Good luck and if you really want to do it, don't let anything stand in your way.

Edited by ogkodansha (log)
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Personally I would love to see a cookbook of just izakaya dishes. Some basic ones, and maybe even going to izakayas and getting recipes for signature dishes. It seems like there are so many different possibilites there, and unique dishes that aren't even made at home a lot.

I think an even larger undertaking, but something that would GREATLY interest me is if someone did English versions of Japanese food magazines. I always see them at a bookstore that's connected to a Japanese market in Seattle, and I have no idea what the recicpes are but I'm so curious. They all seem like the dishes you were talking about Kristin, just everyday Japanese things.

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Personally I would love to see a cookbook of just izakaya dishes. Some basic ones, and maybe even going to izakayas and getting recipes for signature dishes. It seems like there are so many different possibilites there, and unique dishes that aren't even made at home a lot.

Just a couple hours ago I made a memo to myself to include some of the popular izakaya style dishes. :biggrin:

I have been jotting stuff down as it comes to me and I read here and I think I am looking at least at 3 books. :biggrin: That is if this first one ever comes to anything. I am going to take these ideas a little farther and see what I can do with it.

Ogkodansha,

Thank you for your words of wisdom. I have yet to really decide if this is something I am willing to put this much time into. I know nothing about the publishing business and hadn't even gotten that far in my thinking yet but I like the idea of mock up pages as an introduction to what the book will be.

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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No americain influenced japanese dishes please every Asian cook book I get is either th same thing or Americain influced =( plus I would like to see tradtional recipes and fisherman and wild game recipes. Sence I'm a a avid fisherman and hunter I'd love to know some of them and some stuff I could fix while camping in the woods nothing better then a fresh trout over a nice wood fire yum! ^^.

Edited by JasonWV (log)
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I think a lot of the dishes mentioned have been seen in numerous other cookbooks. I think it's important to clarify your focus. Are you interested in writing a cookbook that contains recipes for dishes not usually seen in cookbooks? Or are you thinking about writing an all-encompassing Japanese cookbook--something like a more up-to-date version of Tsuji's Art of Japanese Cooking?

I, personally, would love to see more Japanese baking recipes. My mother once found a beautiful Japanese baking cookbook at the library, but someone checked it out and never returned it. Even recipes for something like shokupan would be welcome.

Edited by prasantrin (log)
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I like the idea of a book that is for the foods that people eat every day as opposed to anything fancy. I don't cook restaurant food at home (very often), I cook home style cooking.

I'm sure that the average person in Japan doesn't serve the elaborate meals so often pictured, as in The Foods of the World book. It does have some excellent recipes but many are outside anything I would feel like making.

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