Kinpira Gobo

Kinpira Gobo

Kinpira gobo is a traditional Japanese side dish made of gobo (burdock root) and carrots. It’s both savory and sweet and sometimes has a hint of red chili spice, depending on the cook. While gobo is considered a mainstream vegetable as far as Japanese and other Asian cuisines are concerned, it is less common in Western cuisine, although in recent years it has gained more visibility. Growing up in a traditional Japanese home (albeit in Los...

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Barley and Spinach Salad & Mothers Day 2014

Barley and Spinach Salad & Mothers Day 2014

I hope everyone had a beautiful Mother’s Day weekend! We enjoyed a nice weekend spent with family and we also took Bebe to her first Dodgers game. Of course, she had more fun looking through the binoculars at the outfielders and eating frozen yogurt while playing with our family, but she was a good cheerleader and had a blast. Here are some photos of our family at the game. Or skip down to the salad recipe at the bottom of the post. Me...

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Kyuri Su Shoyuzuke (Soy Sauce & Vinegar Pickled Cucumbers)

Kyuri Su Shoyuzuke (Soy Sauce & Vinegar Pickled Cucumbers)

  Su shoyuzuke Japanese style tsukemono, or pickles, marinated in a vinegar (su) and soy sauce (shoyuzuke) mixture is one of Bebe’s favorites. She wouldn’t complain if all she found on our dinner table were a huge bowl of these pickled cucumbers for a one-dish (unbalanced) meal. Whenever we visit my parents, my Mom is certain to make a batch of these delicious kyuri (cucumber) tsukemono a day ahead of our arrival, or on the morning...

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2014 Osechi Ryori, Japanese New Years Good Luck Food

2014 Osechi Ryori, Japanese New Years Good Luck Food

Happy New Year! 明けましておめでとう! 2014 is the Year of The Horse and true to family tradition, on January 1st my parents lined-up in front of their local Japanese market to get their free New Year’s zodiac ceramic. My Mom takes my Dad along with her so that he can get an extra ceramic to ensure that both my brother and I get one. Our ceramic horse is proudly decorated in our home as I write! (Photo Credit: Hideki Ueha) This...

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Hiyashi Chyuka (Cold Ramen Noodle Salad) with Black Sesame Vinaigrette

Hiyashi Chyuka (Cold Ramen Noodle Salad) with Black Sesame Vinaigrette

There’s really no great English translation for “hiyashi chyuka” that would embody the true deliciousness of one of my favorite summer-time Japanese dishes. The dish is essentially cold aldente ramen noodles served on a plate and garnished with fresh vegetables and proteins. It might be difficult not to conjure up an image in one’s head of instant ramen noodles served cold on a plate. The noodles are not similar to that...

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Red Cabbage Ramen Noodle Salad

Red Cabbage Ramen Noodle Salad

In my culture, there are certain Asian-fusion dishes that usually make an appearance at potlucks. One such dish is the ramen salad. If you didn’t grow-up going to Japanese-American boy scout jamborees and Eagle Scout ceremonies, or Japanese-Hawaiian family potlucks where there are always jello cheesecake squares (recipe available here) and soy sauce chicken (recipe available here) next to the ramen salad, it wouldn’t be uncommon...

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My Moms Salted Japanese Cucumbers with Shichimi (chili pepper)

My Moms Salted Japanese Cucumbers with Shichimi (chili pepper)

I have a black thumb. Unfortunately, I didn’t inherit my paternal grandfather’s amazing green thumb and ability to grow gorgeous rose gardens, tall beautiful sunflowers, wisteria nor every vegetable imaginable. My grandparents grew everything from fig trees, strawberries, avocado, lettuce, edamame, corn, potatoes, brown onions, green onions, peas, and of course Japanese cucumbers, to name a few. Me? An occasional container of basil,...

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Kale, Sprout & Avocado Salad

Kale, Sprout & Avocado Salad

A few months ago I was inspired to expand my culinary horizons by exploring the world of raw foods. While I am no where close to becoming a vegetarian, I decided that I could certainly benefit by incorporating more raw vegetables and fruit into my diet. You might recall my post about green smoothies and how I fell madly in love with this powerful drink that essentially replaced my breakfast. It’s still a breakfast that I enjoy practically...

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