Category Archives: Food

Video: Okinawan Desserts on Kumejima

Okinawa boasts its own variety of sweets, many based on local flavors including fruits and sugar cane. On Kumejima, you can learn how to make some of the most popular Okianwan desserts at the Kumejima Island School tours, which were organized by the local tourism association. In the video below, locals demonstrate making two classics, Chinbin, a type of crepe, and Sata Andagi, or Okinawan Doughnuts. Both are delicious and participants, not only get the recipe and practice making them,

Goya Season is Back

One of the most popular keywords that brings new visitors to my blog is Goya (aka bitter melon). One of my very first posts back in 2010 included goya in a recipe. I’m thrilled to see that goya awareness has grown so much over the past few years. If you’re looking for an in-depth article on growing or cooking with this healthy plant check out THIS POST. With 2014 well underway we’re heading into goya season, and although my current

Rice in Japan

With rice being a staple of the Japanese diet for hundreds of years, to the point where it was the basis of currency in the Tokugawa era, there is a lot of importance and variety to rice in Japan. For much of Japan’s history rice was grown by peasants for the use of upper classes. Though they grew it, they lived on lesser grains and grasses and it became a food they might only eat on special occasions or festivals.

Easy Okonomiyaki Recipe

Ingredients 1/3 Cabbage (shredded) 1/2 Carrot 3/4 Onion 1 Piman (small green pepper) 3 cups flour (same as for tempura, cake, or cookies) 1 can beer or equivalent water and 1tsp baking soda 3 large eggs 2 packets hondashi (traditional Japanese seasoning) Salt, Pepper, Garlic Olive Oil Optional: Meat (bacon, pork, or sausage), other vegetables, okonomiyaki sauce, mayonnaise, katsuobushi (bonito flakes) Recipe Okonomiyaki is a savory pancake found throughout Japan. Like many dishes here, the ingredients can change by region.

8 Winds Garden Restaurant

During my mother’s visit to Okinawa we spent a few days on the Okinawa mainland where a friend of mine showed us some of the local sites. One of those sights was on the cliffs of Nanjo city in the south-east of the island. High above the ocean sits a set of rustic buildings and an amazing view. The place our guides suggested for lunch was the Eight Winds Garden (八風畑) Restaurant and Kokuto factory. Built around the black sugar

Food of Miyazaki Prefecture

You might have noticed that there was no post last week. The reason is that I spent 5 days in Kyushu’s Miyazaki prefecture. Though I’ve been to Kyushu three times with my students on their school trips, this was my first time to the southern prefectures.  There was a lot to see and do so I’ll split the trip into a series of posts on each place I visited. This post I’ll use to share some of the interesting differences

2013 Kume Island Shrimp Festival

Just two days ago, on November 23, Kume Island held its annual Kuruma Shrimp Festival. The festival is small, but popular with visitors coming from outside of Okinawa for a unique chance to see and taste the prized shrimp (they’re actually prawns but you get the idea). The festival started off with the usual welcoming speeches by the town tourism office, mayor, and shrimp industry representatives. Workers from the four local farms and the Okinawa shrimp cooperative sent the season’s

Maccha Macadamia Cookie Recipe

At this point I should probably get a lawyer, because I’m about to get a ton of hate-mail from dietitians. As promised, I’ve cooked up a recipe involving two of my favorite things. Maccha (aka Matcha) and white chocolate macadamia cookies. If you like maccha lattes or really any snack with that wonderfully powdered green tea in it, you’ll love these. While not a traditional Japanese food item, I hope you’ll give them a try. If you do share a

Fu Chanpuru Recipe

After nearly five years living in Okinawa, my favorite food is still Fu Chanpuru.  While it might sound like part of a martial art, Fu is actually wheat gluten (so steer clear gluten intolerant people… sorry! you’re missing out).  In Okinawa, you can buy Fu in packages, either in long roles, or in more compact forms.  Fu is baked and dry, so you will have to hydrate it before use. Ingredients 72g Fu- gluten 1 carrot cut into thin slices

Easy Summer Salad Recipe with Goya

Summer is in full swing, so cool things down with a healthy summer salad featuring seasonal ingredients.  Today’s recipe is a simple salad made from goya, onion, and cucumber.  It is great as a side dish and can be scaled to feed a crowd.  I made this dish for the after party of our undokai and it went over great. Ingredients 1 Goya 1 Cucumber 1/2 onion Dressing (sesame seed dressing is suggested) salt About 1 tbsp mayonnaise Recipe Cut

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