Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Golden Week

Now I'm in Golden Week, it means I have 1-week-dayoff. And my husband also has 1-week-dayoff. So we can have dinner together. (Usualy he has dinner at his office, and I have it at home alone--- since April)

So we enjoy "foods".

This Monday I had a meeting. The theme was "strawberry".
A friend of mine brought a big straberry plant pot. While we were seeing it, we reading books, listening to music, discussing, and "eating". I prepared some dishes and sweets for this meeting.
Strawberry dumplihgs, Strawberry madeleine, Strawberry gratin, and Straberry noodle. and I baked Strawberry bread.
The other day my neighbor brought bamboo shoots. My husband I love them. It is really seasonal food. Some of them I cooked, and the others I sent to my daughters and my mother with other spring vegetables produced in this area.
And, do you remember what is our (my husband and my) new hobby. "eating strange food".
This time I got this brown thing. Can you guess what it is? It is a pupa of silkworm. Of corse it is a strange food". IT is boiled down with soy sauce ( We call the food cooked by this way "tsukudani"Taste? strange. I'm sorry it is enough for a bite. And my husband is too,Fortunately my neigor loves them, he ate them --munch, munch.
The day after tomorrow we'll go to TOKYO to meet our daughters and our mothers.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

go driving

Yesterday my husband and I went out to drive almost all the day.

We left home at 8:40, and at first we went to the dentist.

(We go to the dentist once a month to keep our tooth healthy.)

And -- start our driving for--

looking for seasonal food, and searching golf park (recently my husband started playing golf, and this area seems to be one of them that have most numbers of golf parks in Japan.)

We went northward, we found a small local vegetable stall, and I bouhgt FUKINOTOU (butterbur scapes.) At night I made TEMPURA and this FUKI-paste. TEMPURA was of course yummy, and eating hog rice topping with FUKI-paste, was also yummy.

We went southward to dropp by his favorite golf shop. While he was browsing in the shop, I was in a rice-craker shop. They served coffee free, so I was waiting for him drinking coffee & eating a rice crakker. There I bouhgt this WASABI-crackers. At night these crackers got a good snack.

Next we went eastward to my favorite big local vegetable shop. There I bouhgt fresh SHITAKI mashroom. At night we grilled them on the "heater". (Yesterday and also today, it is cold and windy) And I found the strange brown things. Can you guess what it is.

They are kind of grasshopeers. In Japan this thing which is roasted and seasoned with soy sauce and suger is said to be a delicacy. So we bought it, though it is mainly sold from fall to winter.

Looks bad, but the taste was not so bad. "much" is a suitable word when we eat them.

He searched 3 golf parks, and we bouhgt lots of intereseting ingredients.

Monday, April 14, 2008

make, cook, and eat

Last Saturday and Sunday, I really enjoyed "my " time.

Do you remember I made marquetry of SAKURA last month? Last month I knew one craft small school, and I'm a little bit into marquetry. So this month I went to make another thing again. This time I made hand mirror of turlip. Do you see a wood turlip in the photo? There is small mirror on the back. And I also made a small turip charm.
Well, as I told you, strawberries are now in the season. And this area it is famous for planintg strawberris. Probably the output is the higest in Japan. I often make strawberry jam. And yesterday I put some jam into the dough of bread directly and I baked. Looks is a little bit pink. and the taste is a little bit sour, sweet and great. I gave half of them to my friend who visited me yesterday.
And when I went to a library, I found an intreseting book. In the book about 70 strange foods (most are Japanese food) are introduced. To be surrprised I knew of most of them. My father didn't drink, but he loved food. So I have seen them. (BUT I don't remember the taste, probably most of them were expensive, so he didn't give me, or if I have had it, it must have been bad for the young MIEKO.) I showed the book to my husband. He really showed interest. And we decided to taste all of them in this year for our common plaesure.
What we tried first was "smoked and oiled oyster with flakes of SAKURA tree". He was really saitsfied. Me? It was strange.
But we enjoyed with SAKE. What shall we try next?

Friday, April 11, 2008

My new recipe

Do you know GOBOU? It is burdock. Now burdock is in season.
The other day a friend sent a bag of spcie as a suvenior of her trip to Indonesia. So I tried to use them. Today I used whole clove. Usualy I use clove powder for pork dishes, but it is the first time to use whole clove. I quick sauted them with olive oil and simmered chiken and burdock pouring red wine.. Adding balsamico vinegar made them really soft. And I seasoned them with whole clove, salt &pepper and more olive oil. I wanted to add some garic, but the smell seems to cause trouble for others to eat them for breakfast, so I didn't add it. To make the color clear I added some leek.
Tastes "great".

Today's menus is that;
black:simmered sea weed with vegetables seasoned by say souce.
brown;quick sauted and simmered chicken and burdock seasoned with clove
orange; marinated lettcue and carrots.

I'm looking forward to using other spice.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Spring meals

These days there are lots of spring meals around me. I'm really happy.

My friend sent homemade Japanese apricot jam. So I baked cookies with it. It tastes a little bit sour, I love the taste and smell.

And yesterday I went to the cafe "KARAKU" to play the piano. They served horsetail quiche, and I took it. It is the brown round thing in the middle photo. Do you know or remember what horsetails are. They are sort of field grass. They come out in this season. The master and his wife picked them up and baked them. They really bring "spring" on the table.

And now I'm making oragne peels using Chinese oragnes (in Japanese we called them NATSU MIKAN--summer orange), which were sent from another my friend.

I'm really happy surrounding such spring meals, and having good friends.

What spring foods are you enjoying now?

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


This is the Rhubarb.
Did you remember? Last year when I visited my friend, I was into Rhubarb. And she gave me some seedlings.
Now they came out.
Can I get some good stalks of them?
I heard, to get good stalks we should wait for 2 years.
Anwway, though I'm a lazy person I'm beging into gardening little by little.
Today it is raining badly, but not so cold.
This afternoon I'l go to a usual cafe to play the piano. Today I'm a pianist.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

cherry blossoms

Now we are in spring, we enjoy cherry blossoms, here and there this weekend cherry blossom festivals are held.
Last night I went to a park near here with my young friend. We enjoyed seeing illuminated cherry blossomes. Can you see somthing pink? It's a tower. There is a small tower in the park. The power is also illuminated by light, and I heard the color changes everyday. Last night it was pink.
This morning my husand and I went to another park. Before opeing stand stalls there were not many people. We enjoyed cherry blossomes having coffee ( I bought a thermos with coffee.)
We used to go there every spring since our daughters were born. Today many kids were playing with equipments my daughters loved. When my younger daughter was little, she was too scared of them to play with them, and cried. --- We talked about our kids' memory. --- We are really a senior couple.
Anyway we couled enjoy short-lived cherry blossoms. Probably next week they will get into green leaves.
I'll introduce a Japanese typcil song about cherry blossoms (SAKURA), though it is a part of it.
Sakura, Sakura
have you seen the old cherry tree blossoming so breathtakingly?
It's a very glorious thing
fragrant flowers seem to sing
Come and see, come and see
see what joy they bring

Friday, April 04, 2008

Itarian pickles???

The other day I was taught specail "Japanese" pickle sauce, using soy sauce MIRIN, vineger and Japanese sugar. As soon as I wanted try, but some seasonings lacked. though there is a fresh big Japanese radish (Daikoy) in front of me.

So I used balsamco-vineger instead of usual Japanese rice vineger,

I used wine instead of MIRIN.

I made Itarian Japanese pickles.

Tastes? not bad.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

cherry blossoms cookies

Yesterday I baked these cherry blossoms cookies. It is easy, just I put cherry blossoms preserved with wine for a while, and ressons as topping.

Today I have a lesson with some adults. It is the first lesson of this term. The theme of this year is "enjoying and eating English", though I just decided it.

So at first we'll listen to SAKURA (it is a really typical Japanese song) and tranlate them into English, and eat them.

If you know some "easy" English picture book or song or just book related with some sweets , please tell me with the recipe.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

April first

Today , yes , it is April first. It is April Fool's Day. Unfortunately I don't have any kids I enjoy the day with. Well, I may delights in teasing my students who come today.

BUT, suddenly a few minutes ago I got a bouquet of flower. From where? From my husband's company.

He has worked at the company for "25" years in this term. (In Japan April is also the first term for office workers.) So they sent it to me with a message "Thank you for your helping for 25 years. Thanks of you Mr.**** (my husband) is able to work with us."

Is it a Japanese thinking way? I don't know single people who has also worked for 25 years got this present. Anyway 25 years passed.

This year is a turnining point for me and my husband.

Well, can you guess what it is.

This morning I sent a photo of today's breakfast to my daughters, and my younger daughter sent back this photo to me. Today she made this breakfast. The menu ( I didn't know the menu from the photo, so I called her) is pancake and boiled spinich seasoned with sesame. They have only a few spring vacaion days, but they seem to relax "together".