Mangosteens and the Allergy Hipster

“Are those plums? Wait, what’s a マンゴ…ス..チ…ン?” “Oh, mangosteens!”  “Do you think it’s safe for me to eat?” Ask me about my various strange allergies and I will give you a Cyrano-esque list of jokes I’ve thought up to make myself feel better. One of these is that I am a food allergy hipster–I was…

A Taste of Summer: Konatsu

柑橘類 (kankitsurui): citrus fruit When I go grocery shopping, I always check the discounted produce cart for deals. Sometimes the fruit there is overripe or about to expire; sometimes it’s just a bit bruised. Last week, I found a few bags of 小夏 (konatsu; literally little summer) that seemed to be in great shape but just…

Spring is Here: Na no Hana (Brassica napus)

緑黄色野菜 (ryokuôshoku yasai): leafy greens, yellow-green vegetables high in beta-carotene After a cold winter that was only matched in length by the irritatingly hot summer that preceded it, spring has finally come to Hokuriku. The supermarket is filled with spring vegetables, but the easiest and perhaps most inoffensive one (least bitter) to prepare is na…

Fiddleheads

深緑 (shinryoku): deep green Springtime is prime season for going to the grocery store and having no idea what on earth is on the displays in the produce section. One item I did recognize was kogomi (こごみ) or kakuma (かくま),  fiddlehead ferns, but only because I tried them last spring in a soba shop in…