Strawberry sponge cake (so-called “shortcake”) is one of the most popular and classic desserts among Japanese sweets influenced by western culture. This cake is simple enough to be homemade at home and is a must for Christmas dinners and birthdays. The combination of the fluffy sponge cake texture and sweet whipped cream is very addictive.
Gyoza no Kawa (餃子の皮) is a thin skin made from wheat flour and strong flour. In Japan, commercial gyoza dough is usually used, but in the case of homemade gyoza, the thickness of the skin can be adjusted as desired.
Ajitama (味玉) is one of the most important toppings for ramen. The longer it is soaked in the marinade, the more flavor it will be added. The half-boiled egg is also a key flavor enhancer. There are a variety of recipes available, but this time I will introduce ajitama, which can be made with only four ingredients.
Cooking Japanese rice is one of the essential technique in Japanese cooking. However, in Japan, it is common to use a rice cooker. Therefore, I will show you how to cook delicious Japanese rice even if you do not have a rice cooker. The key points are to sharpen rice without water and not to wash it too much.
Anko(あんこ) is sweetened azuki beans. It is used in many wagashi, such as daifuku, taiyaki, anmitsu, and oshiruko, and is essential for making wagashi. There are two types of anko: Tsubu-an (つぶあん), which retains the texture of the azuki bean grains, and koshi-an(こしあん), which is strained smooth. If you feel that store-bought anko is too sweet, why not try making homemade anko? And if you do, don’t forget to use azuki beans called dainago(大納言)!
Zundamochi (ずんだ餅) is a typical Japanese confectionery of Yamagata and Miyagi prefectures. It is a dumpling made by mashing boiled edamame (soybeans) and topping it with edamame-an (sweet red bean paste) with sugar. The balance between the sweetness of the edamame-an and the dumplings mixed with tofu makes it an addictive dish. Read More
Recipe : Nasu Dengaku (Eggplant Steak with Miso Sauce)
Dengaku (田楽) is a grilled dish of skewered tofu or konnyaku with miso paste. It is also called “dengaku-yaki” or “miso dengaku” and is one of the dishes that have been eaten in various parts of Japan since ancient times. The name “Dengaku” is said to have originated from the Heian period (794-1185) custom of praying for a good harvest in farming villages called “Dengaku-mai”.
In this “Dengaku-mai” dance, the dancers wear white hakama and jump on a single stick. The name “dengaku-mai” comes from the resemblance of the tofu skewered on a stick in this costume.
“Dengaku-mai” declined during the Muromachi period (1333-1573), and is now performed as a folk art at shrines in some areas.
Originally, dengaku was a dish of tofu with miso paste, but gradually variations have been added, such as using vegetables or river fish as ingredients.
Cucumber and Shiso Pickles (きゅうりとしその漬物) is an easy to prepare and tasty side dish. This pickle is a dish that can be eaten even by those who do not like vinegar, since it is a lightly pickled dish made with salt. Eggplant is also included in the dish, so you can enjoy a variety of textures along with the aroma of shiso.
Goma-dofu (ごま豆腐) is a simple side dish made with starch from a plant called kuzu(kudzu) and sesame paste. It is usually served in kaiseki cuisine. Since it has a very plain taste, I will also show you how to arrange it to enjoy as a dessert.