Category Archives: The Gaijin’s Garden

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

School Lunch in Okinawa Japan for July 2-6

Monday July 2 Milk, barley rice, mozuku stuffed fried egg, daikon bushii, orange Monday’s meal was on the far side of tasty, but for me it wasn’t much of a surprise since daikon was featured so heavily in the bushii.  Stewed daikon (giant white radish) isn’t something you’ll find a whole lot in the West, but its got such a unique mild flavor to it.  The bushii is essentially a light stew of pork, daikon, and other root vegetables that

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,

The Gaijin’s Garden – A Spring Start

Spring announced its presence with a wrathful storm across Japan the other day, but that just means the oceans are beginning to warm.   With the change in temperatures will come the heat and humidity of summer.  Last year I battled the heat with a green curtain.  My housing was on the first floor and I had great big sliding doors that faced the sun.  By planting summer vine vegetables, namely goya, I was able to reduce the temp inside

School Lunch February 23-29

Thursday February 23               Milk, millet rice, sautéed burdock and carrots, mayo baked salmon, ‘clear’ soup This one is definitely Japanese (ok so maybe not mayo… but then I’ve only ever seen mayo salmon in Japan).  I’ve been wondering what that root dish was for forever… I now know what my second favorite vegetable is… burdock root.  SO good. Friday February 24               Milk, white rice, Japanese style