Saturday, May 28, 2011

Mock Gyudon Bento and Baked Goods

Good mornin!! A fun weekend has just started. Today it's a bit gloomy outside though. Oh well, I'm glad to get to write something to share today also. Yeah I like writing. But as I mentioned earlier, I have a lot of stuff to do lately. I think I'm going to have to slow down my blogging. I actually have tons of articles, recipes and something that I'd love to share with everyone though... In fact I decided I'd spend time for my family as much as possible. But you can find what I'm making for fun everyday on twitter.

Well I made many eats Yesterday! This is... I call it *mock gyudon bento*. Do you know *Yoshinoya no Gyudon*? Gyudon is a bowl of rice topped with simmered beef slices, which is a kind of savory dombri (rice and dish in a bowl). However I rarely eat beef. So you can hardly find beef dishes in my bentos. So I used pork slices for this one instead of beef. Are you aware yet? That this gyudon looks pretty much the same as Sukiyaki. But gyudon only has beef and onion unlike sukiyaki. I added shirataki to them this time because I love it! Since I only prepared the mock gyudon, this bento turned out too simple and bland. Okay, one store bought looking gyudon bento is done up aha!
mock gyudon #bento #lunch

I made some syoyu tamago the other day. Syoyu tamago (soy-soaked boiled eggs) are also called *aji tama* (flavored eggs). I guess some of you have seen it in ramen before. You know, egg goes well with gyudon and sukiyaki besides noodles. There are a lot of syoyu egg recipes out there. I like to only use syoyu, but you can make your eggs as you like. It's okay to add dashi or chicken stock, sugar, mirin, spices etc.. according to your taste. I added 1 tablespoon shoyu to 5 boiled eggs, then allowed it to soak well for more than 20 minutes, flipping or rolling them in the polybag several times to soak overall (in this way, you don't need to waste a lot of syoyu). Syoyu tamago can keep for a few days in the fridge.
syoyu tamago

I baked whole wheat breads yesterday. They turned out so good.
whole wheat bread

Also I baked some cupcakes. I'm into cupcakes lately. Trying to come up with a nice fluffy cupcake recipe. This is decorated with morron whipped cream.
marron whipped cream #cupcake

Though I only took two pictures Yuppi and I made some kinds of creams this time. Yuppi decorated all of them. You know what, this cream is supper nice in particular!! So I have to write, and you have to try! Don't you wanna know?? We added some cherry jam to unsweetened heavy cream, then whipped. Without an electric mixer, you could make whipped cream pretty damn quick because of the pectine that's included in jam. And I think cherry jam is the best for a berry cream, ummm YUMMooo.
cherry whipped cream #cupcake

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Kima Curry and Yaki Udon and Last Sakura

Hey there! How are you doing up? Actually I've made few bentos lately because I've been busy. Plus It seems like I've been out of luck! I dropped a heavy pan on my toe the other day. The kitchen drain pipe overflowed and the floor was flooded about a week ago. And I fell over in front of the house holding laundry a couple of days ago. My right toe and ribs still a bit hurt. Aaahh poor me! What unfortunate days... I'm still alive though hehe!

In the meantime I feel so sorry for the losses by the tornado that struck Joplin, MO. That really  reminds me of the sights of Tohoku, Japan (hit by the hugest tsunami). So I feel so sad. It's our turn to pray for them. I've heard a lot of sad news recently... But looking at everyone's bentos always makes me feel good! I really love and enjoy seeing bentos my buddies made even if I don't have time to leave a comment to them. Thank you all!

So I thought I had to post something so that I would pick myself up even more. Post something? Yes of course I do bento!! Today I assembled scraps and made a quick kima curry, seasoned it with a piece of Japanese curry cube, tomato puree, syoyu, usuta sauce, garam masala, and salt. This bento also has turmeric rice, a syoyu tamago, purple potato salad, pickled turnip, turnip leaf stir-fry, and a cup of orange yogurt for a perfect-curry-dessert. I'll write my simple syoyu tamago recipe next time! Oh I forgot to say that this one was the store-bought-looking bento series part 3!! Or I should call it *deli style bento series*?... I guess.

This one is a yakiudon bento, consists of udon, pork slices, shrimps, cabbage, seasoned with yakisoba sauce. I put an aonori omelet on it. Omelet goes great with yakiudon and yakisoba. Apple/dekopon yogurt for dessert.

Late-blossoming sakura are still bursting around my area. Since they are double-flowered the petals look fluffy, and the color is so pretty pink!



Have a happy Thursdee!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Teriyaki Chicken Patty Bento

It looks like spring has totally come around here! Various kinds of sakura are blossoming now everywhere. I feel sort of excited for no reason. How is it going in the middle of the week?

Today's post is featuring a teriyaki chicken tofu patty recipe! The rest of this bento are a grilled salmon fillet, syoyu tamago halves, purple potato salad, and noriben. Bummer, I forgot to prepare dessert!

Purple potato salad: Boil diced potato, then toss with diced cucumber, chopped onion, vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt.
Syoyu tamago: Soak boiled eggs in some syoyu for a while.


babykins Healthy Tofu Chicken Patty Recipe
Chicken patties (*tsukune* in Japanese) are one of good bento dishes, which go well with both rice and bread. Especially tofu patty is soft and tasty even cold. I usually use astuage for patty because it's not watery. So you wouldn't need draining. (If you use a lot of soft tofu for patty mixture it would turn out too soft or watery.) But if you can't get atsuage you could use well-drained normal firm tofu instead. This patty is so simple but you could add whatever you like which is not watery according your tastes -- such as onion, scallion, carrot, bell pepper, beans, sesame seed and so on. By the way *teriyaki* means glossy-sauteing with sauce that includes sugar. Although this time I made teriyaki patties, fresh-sauteed plain ones are tasty with salt & pepper as well. Give it a try!
== Patty ingredients ==
1 chicken breast, skinless
1 atsuage (fried firm tofu) or drained firm tofu
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
(Some flour for dredging)

== Teriyaki sauce ingredients ==
1 part sugar
2 parts shoyu (soy sauce)
2 parts mirin (sweet rice wine)

1) Process together all the patty ingredients until ground. Be careful not to over-grind.

2) Shape it into small rounds, then dredge with flour lightly. Brown both sides of them in a greased frying pan over medium heat, then cover the pan and cook over low heat until cooked through (for about a few minutes).

3) Add some teriyaki sauce and dress well, medium-heating. Done!

This is for Yuppi. Take a look at this cute cloth. One of my dear friends sent it to me! Thanks so much dear!

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Sakura Picnic

Happy Golden Week, May Day, Star Wars Day, Children's Day and Cinco De Mayo (all are belated though) haha!! Well, MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU!! I'm so wishing all kids all over the world their happiness, especially those who've lost their both parents by all the recent disasters.


I finally got to go see sakura for the first time this year. We had this lunch viewing beautiful sakura trees. This one has mayo-shrimp, dashimaki-tamago (a kind of tamagoyaki), butter-sauteed purple potato, curry flavored shimeji and chicken, four kani-mayo norimaki, and rare cheesecakes with strawberry sauce for a treat after lunch.



This type of norimaki is very easy to make even without a sushi mat because it doesn't need to be rolled tightly or sliced. You could gobble it down nom nom. Kanimayo is crab meat tossed with mayonnaise. It's okay to use any foods you like as filling -- cut cucumber, scrambled egg, cut tamagoyaki, sauteed spam or hotdog, meat or chicken soboro, umeboshi, canned tuna, sliced avocado.... mmm any suggestions?

babykins Kanimayo Norimaki Recipe
Crab meat or crab kamaboko
Sushi rice or plain rice
Lemon juice
Plastic wrap

1) Prepare kanimayo. Toss crab meat with mayo, a little lemon juice and salt.
2) Place a nori on plastic wrap, and then spread rice thinly and evenly over the nori, leaving an even border of uncovered nori along the top edge. If you use plain rice, sprinkle a little salt over nori at this point.
3) Place some of the kanimayo on the rice, and then roll it up like a roll cake. Decorate and wrap as you like.

babykins Sushi Vinegar Recipe
5 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Put the ingredients in a jam jar or something, and shake it.
Add it to steaming rice and mix well. --- 1 - 2 teaspoons sushi vinegar per cup of cooked rice.

Adjust the sugar and salt to taste.
Fresh-cooked rice is preferable, but you can use microwaved leftover rice as well.
In order not to make your sushi rice gooey, cook rice with somewhat less water than usual.


Actually we went to the public library I can enjoy all kinds of books, and feel so refreshed and comfortable each time. So I love to visit there so much. These pictures are of the park right beside the library. Fortunately, the day we went, the sakura trees were just in full blossom! Although it was still windy and chilly, we were ever so excited and impressed with the beautiful and spectacular sight.




The park is a historic place where there used to be a Bugyosyo (magistrate's office of the samurai period) until 140 or so years ago. A part of the bugyosyo was duplicated in the center of the park two years ago. We were able to look around inside of it as well. It looked like a gorgeous mansion of the highest samurai.



You can hardly see the way this moat is a huge star shape, but you could check it out from the top of this tower. Tooons of sukura trees are planted along the edges of the moat! The moat was made around the magistrate's office in order to prevent enemy invasions.




Don't stare at meee! Bye!




We're having another holiday left. Fabulous weekend everyone!!