Thursday, June 08, 2017

Food Photos - May

Making Ume Plum Infused Syrup

Well, I once called this "Ume Juice" but I wasn't happy with that name. Now I think it's more like syrup.

Anyway, I did this again, just like I did in previous years. Hope it turns out alright.

I had several opportunities to eat out in May, 2017. These are from a potluck party.

And one day, at our buckwheat noodle making class, we ended up making ramen noodles! :D
It was so much fun and very interesting to compare the process with that of buckwheat noodle making. It was amazing how hard it was to roll out ramen noodle dough!!
And after eating the homemade ramen noodles, we had a great time enjoying the cakes one of the members made at home and brought to the class.

Towards the end of the month, I had a chance to try this lunch buffet at one of the restaurants in our hometown.
Too bad I was full before I could try everything. There were just too many kinds of food! :D


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Friday, June 02, 2017

Food Photos - April

 Matcha Soba (Buckwheat Noodles flavored with powdered green tea)

Remember I made beautiful green buckwheat noodles by adding some powdered green tea in February?  I froze some of them so that I can use them in cherry blossom season. Yes. I really, really wanted to take a photo like this one for years. And the dream came true in mid April.

To be perfectly honest, the noodles did not taste as good as they did in April. Well, that's the way it is with homemade buckwheat noodles... They are meant to be eaten ASA they're made. But I was happy to be able to take these photos. A feast to my eyes. ;)

BTW, I started practicing Koto (a traditional Japanese musical instrument) when I broke my left foot last year. And here's a video of me playing a music with a theme related to cherry blossom. Let me try if I can post it here.

I wonder if any of you know this song...  Sorry, this is not a classic. ;)
(Original music:

One day I got lucky and was given a huge Japanese amberjack for free. It was a little damaged so not for sale. Since dad didn't want to gut it, I gutted and filleted this huge (about 10 kg?) Japanese amberjack all by myself! Phew!!

And, as long-term readers of my blog know, April is the beginning of our abalone season. Hence, these photos:

Cooking chewy type abalone in a pressure cooker

Mmmm... looks like I didn't take many food photos in April, 2017...

Monday, May 22, 2017

Food Photos - March

Buri (Japanese Amberjack) Nigirizushi

Japanese Amberjack is a valuable fish that sustains the life in this small fishing village. But it's valuable only in its season from Feb to early Mar. If they come after that when it's warm, like late Mar. or Apr., their price goes unbelievably down... because they lose good fat and may have some parasitic worms.
Nevertheless, we were thrilled when there was a big catch in late Mar. this year! Last year was a bad year, and this year we were so worried at the end of Feb. Having almost no catch of this fish for two years in a row meant devastating.
So, on Mar. 21st, the whole neighborhood jumped in joy early in the morning with the news of a big catch.
Actually we had a bigger catch later in Apr. but the price was miserably low, they said.

Anyway, it's a relief to know that nature's blessing is still abundant. Here's the blessing in mountainous areas. Bracken fern shoots were abundant this year as in last year and the year before. ;)
After ponkan orange season was over, there came hassaku and other type of citrus fruits.

And Mar. 25th was my birthday! I baked Ponkan orange pound cake this year. :)

It was also the day that we celebrated the official establishment of our local revitalization project team... well, sort of.
The core members had an informal gathering one night and enjoyed great food like this. :)

Meanwhile, my buckwheat noodle making skill was in progress. Teammates often bring in their homemade dishes/sweets and turn the class into a small party. ;)

And I AM making a progress.
You may be impressed if you know that these noodles were hand-cut, not with a pasta machine.
Well, I'm going to post about buckwheat noodle making more in detail and tell you everything about it someday, so stay tuned.  ;)

Monday, February 27, 2017

Food Photos - February

 Matcha (Pawdered Green Tea) Buckwheat Noodles I Made

I tried out this flavored buckwheat noodles, which turned out to be quite OK.
The scent of matcha was so delightful. But the dipping sauce was a bit too strong and hid the matcha flavor. So that's what I need to work on next time...

And I came up with a buckwheat cookie recipe to use up leftover buckwheat noodles. :)

Another thing I tried out... ponkan orange marmalade and cream cheese on Ritz crackers.
Pretty good!  :D

In Feb. some early-blooming cherry trees are already in full bloom. Here's some pics from our Cherry Blossom Festival.
Steamed (and slightly sweetened) sticky rice flavored with cherry blossom and leaves, maybe?
And jelly in cherry blossom color.

And my left foot was cured enough to start some exercise this month.  :)


Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Food Photos - January Part2

Ponkan Oranges from Dad's Orchard

I guess I wrote about dad's orchard before... He couldn't take care of it himself any more, so we said OK to a young guy who wanted to take over. And it was still in his trial period without a formal contract when this happened...

What happened? Deers ate barks of all the ponkan orange trees there!
I mean, not just dad's orchard. The neighbors' and our relative's also suffered damage. We thought the trees would eventually die. But ironically, this was an "on-year"for oranges and the damaged trees and obviously they needed to get rid of heavy fruits so that they can use nutrition for their survival. 
So, though my left foot was not completely cured, I picked oranges day after day with the help of my friends.
Sometimes we had lunch at the orchard like this one.

Uh... Did I say "food photos?" Oh well. These aren't, obviously. But just to let you know what I was up to around that time.

Since my left foot was cured enough to walk up to the orchard, I re-started my morning walk. Here's one of my photos of omega sunrise mirage. Impressive, ha?
But still I was spending plenty of time at home instead of taking photos here and there or joining fun events. So I started practicing Koto, traditional Japanese musical instrument which I practiced when I was a child (and quit within a year or so). ;)
Then I wanted to make a cover for it, and soon it became my fun project. See the result? I made this with used Obi belt that I bought online for about $15! (This was an incredibly good buy. The original price must have been more than $500 or so.)

And it was also this month that I discovered a couple of new places to eat at. One was an okonomiyaki (Japanese savory pancakes with minced cabbage and chopped meat and/or seafood mixed in) place.

And a new diner opened at the location not too far from my house. This is their "Morning set (breakfast plate?)"
Yep. I was recovering steadily. ;)


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