Thursday, April 20, 2017

sakura gohan

Untitled If you've ever wanted to bring home Japan with you and like the flavor of sakura (cherry blossoms), I would suggest getting some sakura hanazuke.

It is also called sakura shiozuke.

It is hard to describe the flavor, but I can tell you it isn't like sour cherries nor American cherry flavors.

Depending on which brand you buy...the size varies and I would assume the price too.

This one cost me about 400 yen (tax included) is about 40 grams and is from Kanagawa.

Untitled The sakura is packed in salt.

Be sure to wash off the salt before using.

IMG_5479 This is one I received from a friend a couple years back and is from Nara and was about 50 grams.

broccoli goma-ae, tako avo poke & sakura gohan❤︎  #broccoli #tako #avocado #poke #sakura #rice #gomaae #osaka #japan #ブロッコリー #胡麻和え #タコ #アボカド #ポケ #桜ごはん #大阪 To make sakura gohan...2 servings.

1 cup rice
4-5 sakura flowers

Soak your flowers for about ten minutes to remove some of the salt.
Cook your rice according to your rice cooker.
Drain and chop up the flowers.
After the rice is cooked, add most of the chopped flowers and mix with your shamoji (rice paddle).
With the remaining chopped flowers, garnish when serving.

NOTES: The only thing about this type of sakura is that it can only be found during Spring. Most stores do not carry it year round. This recipe is super easy and a nice way to enjoy a taste of Japan's Spring.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

prepping for summer

mixed berry compote❤︎  #strawberry #raspberry #blackberry #sourcherry #osaka #japan #苺 #木苺 #ブラックべりー #サワチェリー #大阪 #コンポート #compote Yesterday, I picked up a frozen bag of mixed berries...

After bringing the bag back home, I read the back, it said that you need to cook the berries, not to use as is.

Boo! I had intended to use it as is in smoothies...

So, I rinsed the berries, then cooked it, with a little sugar and some vinegar (didn't have lemon juice)...

I'm going to freeze most of this, but at least now I can use this in smoothies whenever I want to.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017


Untitled Sunday, the weather was beautiful...sunny & HOT!

Seriously feeling like summer...gah!

Yesterday, it started to rain at about lunchtime and didn't stop until early this morning.

I think the weather dude mentioned that we got a month's rainfall in one day...eep!

It is still quite overcast today.

Wanted to share with you the last of the sakura...

Love this season, it is just way too short and the weather just too krazy these days..

Monday, April 17, 2017

shin-tamanegi gohan

Untitled I enjoy the television shows that visit farms.

Most times, the farmer's wife has great ideas for using the veggies that they grow.

Like this one...Shin-tamanegi gohan.

In Japan, Spring veggies are tender and sweet.

Shin-tamanegi (literally "new onion") are super tender.

If you are not careful, they will bruise and rot quickly.

Anyway, the show I was watching visited a farm that grows these onions.

The wife made a rice recipe in her rice cooker and put a whole onion in before cooking.

There wasn't a recipe online to try so I ad-libbed, basing what I did for the shoyu butter corn yakionigiri recipe that I use.

Untitled When I made this, I used 1 cup of rice, 1 cup of water and 1 softball sized shintamanegi.

After cooking, the onion is so soft that you can break it up with the shamoji (rice paddle)!

NOTES: If you use a softball sized onion, cook it with 2 cups rice & 2 cups water. If you use a fist sized onion, then 1 cup rice & 1 cup water will do.

The rice gets a little softer than normal because I think the liquid from the onion adds to the cooking water.

This was nice served with steak and also with an oozy egg the next morning.

I didn't season the rice because we enjoy the flavor of the onion as is, but feel free to put salt and pepper to taste when serving.

I know you may not be able to get this type of onion where you are, but if you happen to be in Japan when shin-tamanegi are in season, I hope you will give this a try.

I'm making this again.

Friday, April 14, 2017

lunch with a view

Untitled Today, I went to Square for lunch because someone posted on social media that the cherry blossoms were in bloom in their area. (click on the photo to view the video)

Untitled From the second floor (their cafe space), you can see this.

Untitled I had their taco rice & iced coffee...1300 yen (tax included).

It was quite filling but I liked how they put the cheese under the broiler and the egg was nice and oozy.

Untitled At the mall too, everything was in full bloom.

Untitled I forgot to share this video of Sakuranomiya with you yesterday... (click on the photo)

Hopefully the weather will hold up over the weekend, so we can check out more blooms.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

sakura walks

Untitled Today was sunny...if you were in the shade it was a bit nippy, but if you were out in the sun, it was!

I walked from Umeda to Sakuranomiya.

I've been here several is an area that has cherry trees along the river.

Here is another picture from years before...

Untitled (click on this photo and I hope it will take you to Flickr to view the video)

Untitled From Sakuranomiya, I walked back towards Umeda and through Ogimachi Park.

It was a nice day to be out and about.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

sakura walks

Untitled Monday, the weather was really cloudy and since I ran some errands, I didn't really get to check out any cherry blossoms.

Tuesday, the winds were krazy (like a typhoon) and rainy. AND we had a cold snap...brr!

Today, I went to check out my "usual" spots...(If you click on the photo, it should take you to Flickr, where I hope you'll be able to view the short video.)

Most of the cherry blossoms were still intact, but there were quite a bit of petals on the ground.

Tomorrow is supposed to be better weather, so I hope to check out more cherry blossoms...