Overnight Cold-Brewed Coffee

Now that we’ve got our summer breakfast situation sorted with overnight oats, let’s move on to that other temperature-challenged staple of breakfast: coffee. I know that hot drinks can help you cool down, but when the mere thought of pouring boiling water from my electric kettle to my French press makes me break out in…

Pasta Pomodoro: The Easiest Pasta

Perhaps “The Easiest Pasta” is a misnomer. Perhaps boiled soba in dipping sauce is actually easier, but when you want a new flavor profile on easy summer pasta–i.e., when you spend all summer eating cold Japanese noodles–this is your recipe. The ingredients are easy to find in Japan: fresh basil was in the produce section of…

Tomato Challenge: ALL the Tomato Recipes

I couldn’t resist buying a box of 10 large (230 g), gorgeous tomatoes for only 598 yen at the grocery store a few weeks ago. Tomatoes in Japan can be quite expensive, and although the price drops in the summer when they are in season, 600 yen might get you 5 if you are lucky….

Whole-Wheat Pita (Bread Revolution Series)

More Bread Revolution and Guide to Flour. “Pita pockets” didn’t excite me as a kid. Toted as a kid-friendly food, the charm of stuffing sandwich fillings into a bread with a pocket was lost on me. I rediscovered pita–fresh pita–in university at Middle-Eastern diners and as (store-bought) hummus became more mainstream. In Japan, I sometimes…

My Favorite Bamboo-Shoot (Takenoko) Recipes

Early May means fresh bamboo shoots are in season again here in Ishikawa, and I received not one but three lovely shoots from my friends and coworkers this year! 2012 is apparently a bumper year for bamboo in the forests and in my kitchen. Whether you purchased or received fresh bamboo, one large shoot can…

Flour Tortillas (Bread Revolution Series)

More Bread Revolution and Guide to Flour. TexMex/Southwestern/Mexican foods were something I purchased from the grocery or at restaurants in the US, missed sorely in Japan, and was convinced I couldn’t make it myself. If I found salsa in a jar, I couldn’t find chips, so what was the point? Avocados weren’t something I could…

Easy Whole-Wheat Pizza Dough (Bread Revolution Series)

More Bread Revolution and Guide to Flour. One thing that always amazes me when I return to the US is the sheer amount of choice one has about food. Order a pizza in the US and you can usually choose whole-wheat or white crust (sometimes even gluten-free); thick or thin crust; marinara sauce or white…

Roasted Vegetables and My Obsession with 安納芋

Orange sweet potatoes, ubiquitous in the US, are often nowhere to be found in Ishikawa. Depending on where you are in the prefecture, you can usually locate some in one brief part of late winter in the local-vegetable section of the grocery store with the Noto- and Kaga Yasai (heirloom vegetables from Noto  [northern Ishikawa]…

ベーガル革命: Whole-Wheat Bagels

もちもち (mochimochi): springy (texture) Back in my language-school days at Midd, a New-Yorker foodie friend got on my case for eating the dining-hall bagels, telling me, “That’s not a bagel. That’s a piece of bread shaped like a bagel.” It’s probably for the best that he doesn’t find out what sort of things pass for…

Aka-Zuiki Quick Pickles (Red-Taro-Stem Vinegar Pickles)

Japanese food traditionally includes a lot of tsukemono (漬け物), or pickles. The first thing most Americans will think of when you say pickles is dill (cucumber) pickles that go with sandwiches; however, pickles are any vegetable that has been preserved with brining. Japanese pickles cover a wide range of base ingredients, including carrots, cucumbers, ginger,…

Café Proverbs 15:17, Kyoto

Better is a dish of vegetables where love is than a fattened ox and hatred with it. -Proverbs 15:17 Whenever I go to Kansai, I always have dinner with one of my good friends who is a vegetarian and a fellow lover of cafes. This time, we went to Café Proverbs 15:17  near Hyakumanben (百万遍)…