Monthly Archives: June 2012

School Lunch in Japan for June 26-29

Tuesday June 26 Milk, barley rice, goya chanpuru, fried fish, clear soup Thanks to last week’s Dragon Boat Festival, there was no school for my junior highs on Monday.  We started off the shortened week with an Okinawan meal of fried banana fish and goya chanpuru.  The fish was covered in a light tempura batter and fried, followed up with a clear soup of komatsuna. Wednesday June 27 Milk, barley rice, shrimp and vegetable dumplings, vegetable and oyster stir fry,

2012 Kume Island Hari

This past weekend saw the celebration of Dragon Boat festivals throughout the south pacific.  The Dragon Boats, like many Olympic Sports, has its roots in war training and preparation.  In the far past, small canoe-like boats were used as transportation between islands in the Pacific.   Before the use of sail and other types of propulsion, the long canoe boats were propelled by thin, long oars.  They are often brightly painted with water dragons which is where they got their

Monday June 25

Hi! Thank you for taking the time to visit More Things Japanese and learn a little bit more about Japan.  I hope I’ve been able to share a few new bits of culture, and answer some of the questions you have.  Judging by the search traffic I get here, I think I’ve been successful. Unfortunately due to computer issues there wasn’t  a normal Monday post this week, though I’ll be back tomorrow with a great post on the Kumejima Dragon

School Lunch in Japan for June 18-22

Monday June 18 Milk, millet rice, minced meat stuffed inari, stir fry vegetables, kenchin soup, apple  This lunch was a somewhat strange mix of flavors.  Inari is a soybean product similar to tofu.  They are little pockets made from bean curd in a slightly sweet sauce.  Usually they are stuffed with sushi rice and served cold.  This version paired the same slightly sweet inari flavor with meat, which was strange for me but quite edible.  The rest of the meal

Iwatayama Monkey Park

When you think of Kyoto, the first images you conjure are likely of temples, geisha, or tea houses, yet there is far more to see around the City.  One of Kyoto’s interesting features is the beautiful green mountains that surround the city, many of which have permanent kanji designs that are lit aflame during festivals.  One of the mountains without a symbol is Arashi Mountain, just east of the city.  There, high above the urban sprawl of ancient and modern

How You Know You’ve been in Okinawa Too Long

These lists are pretty common, and a friend of mine pointed one out about Japan awhile ago.  This has been stewing around my server for a while, but I thought as summer and a “SUPER” Typhoon are heading for us, some humor might be appropriate.  Here’s my list… add yours!   You’ve seen traditional Okinawan dance Obon is accompanied by eisa and sometimes fireworks You know what goya is. You like goya. You grow your own goya. Your idea of

School Lunch in Japan June 12-15

Tuesday June 12 Milk, a-sa chanhan, fried gyoza, chingensai soup This meal hits a lot of Okinawan flavors. The chahan is a typical Okinawan fried rice flavored with dashi and garlic, but with a-sa, a local sea plant that is also often used in soups. The gyoza are originally from China but are tastily adapted in a variety of ways throughout Japan. With my island being so close to China, it’s no wonder we get unique twists between the two

Osaka Castle Grounds

Japan has many castles, but Osaka’s is perhaps one of the most well-known and most visually stunning of them all. Nestled within the sprawling and modern city, Osaka Castle is part historical monument, park, and attraction all at once. It is well worth a visit if only to explore the beautiful grounds surrounding the exterior of the castle. The towering structure is encircled by more than a moat. Trees, walkways, and parks form an amazingly interesting border between ancient and

The Heat is On

Summer is almost upon Japan.  Down in Okinawa, some places have already felt 30*C heat that humidity makes even worse.  So how does Japan cope with the heat, especially given the likelihood of power shortages due to the limitation of nuclear power since 3/11? Constructing for Cool Much of Japanese architecture still reflects the traditional Japanese method of staying cool.  Raised floors, large windows, sliding doors, and the over-all draftiness of many Japanese houses contribute to their ability to stay cool in summer,

School Lunch in Japan for June 4-8

Monday June 4 Milk, hijiki rice, sweet and sour chingensai, fatty tofu soup, almonds The main course for this meal was a type of fried rice with hijiki seaweed mixed in.  Hijiki is a small black plant.  The salad was chingensai (a leafy vegetable), ham, and other vegetables in a aemono, or sweet pickling dressing.  The soup was broken tofu and onion. Tuesday June 5 Milk, barley rice, sautéed burdock, fried kibinago, daikon clear soup, purple potato chips This meal

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