Sushi class on Jul 15th ’17

I offered a sushi cooking class for young couple from US.

I’m always happy to share all my knowledge of Japanese cooking and  food culture to people, mostly tourists who want to explore new world in Japanese cuisine.

Since I also have a license of Kiki-sake-shi, sake sommelier, it is my pressure to introduce Japanese sake to people.  People in my class sometime ask me how to choose good sake for drinking, for a gift and for bring it back to their countries.

Sake is fermented alcohol made from mainly rice, rice malt and water. Those ingredients  produce unique flavor, aroma, texture and umami in  each bottles. The  characteristics depend on the kind of rice,  process, water, and more in each brewery. Those combination create their own sake.

Today’s participants are interested in Sake. They’ve already enjoyed tasting sake during their trip in Japan.   Then I gave small “sake lecture” to them to understand sake better.

They are going to travel around Japan after the day. Hope the will enjoy sake in each region.


Sushi tends to go with dry sake since the dryness wash out fishy taste in your mouth.   Hope you try!


Many thanks,










Ramen Cooking Class on June 23rd ’17

I had a Ramen class and the  participants are wonderful couple   came from London today.



You may figure out how cooking Ramen is complicated when you take the cooking class.  The key taste of ramen is how much  UMAMI containing in the noodle bowl.

I prepare some items for the ramen the day before.  Braised pork is one of them.  I tried to complete cooking ramen in 2 hours cooking time in the class, and I’ve tried to cook braised pork in an hour. However, the result is not good enough for me. May be I need more practice, but I couldn’t satisfied the taste and texture of the pork.  So I decided to cook in advance, the night before.

Many participants at the class were impressed on this braised pork. It takes time to cook, but the seasonings are quite simple: soy sauce, sake and sugar.

Cooked pork produces Umami a lot, so I used cooked sauce for ramen soup.


I like to use pork shoulder for braised pork, but can be substitute to other part of pork.


Adding hot water to cooked pork seasonings becomes nice ramen noodle soup. My ramen cooking containing more umami into a bowl though. How profound  to know umami and ramen!

Many thanks,









そしてこのクラス、更に盛り上がるのです。アメリカ人4人グループの中で二人の女性はChristina Christine というお名前で似ている為、すでにそのお仲間の中で何故かAkiko というニックネームがついていました(笑)。クラスでは、そのアイデアを頂き、というか悪ノリして、皆さんに日本語の名前を付けて、クラスの中で呼び合うことにしました。


そして、Akiko, Shigeru, Sachiko, Yoko, Sho, Ben という昭和な名前を付け、ネームプレートもしっかりとエプロンに貼ってもらい、クラスではお互い日本の名前を呼び合いましょう、というルールにしました。この日本の名前がまた皆さんが喜んで下さり、それだけで盛り上がった、というわけです。





出来るだけ皆さんご自身で作ってみるhands on クラスにしたいので作業が同じくらいしてもらえるか気を配ります。


今までも56名のクラスがありましたが、上記のように持て余してしまう光景がちらほら、でも自分でも手を動かさないと進まない状況がよくありましたので試行錯誤を繰り返しているところです。特にこの日は の撮影取材が入りましたので、てんてこ舞いになっているところを撮って頂くよりも、少しでも整ってる方が、写真おさまりが良いですし。










Photo by Ben Beech

Japanese cooking class for Tokyo expats

I’ve welcomed 3 young expats came from Australia  today for Japanese cooking class. I had a request to cook Japanese dish with local ingredients since the guests have been in Tokyo for several month for their work.

I’m curious how does the people came from foreign country live in Tokyo.  In my experience, I’ve lived in the US for 10 years with my husband  and sometime missed  food in my country. Groceries in stores are different and didn’t figured out right away how to cook and how to eat.

Especially Japanese grocery doesn’t show the name in English on the package. I believe it is not easy for the expats to find out what to buy and how to cook the ingredients.

Youngsters are sweet and motivated so I enjoyed cooking with them and  had really good time to talk.

We cooked Salmon Nanban-zuke ( salmon marinated in soy sauce based sweet sour seasoning with veggies), cucumber with cream sesame dressing and eggplant with miso sauce.  Those menus are common dishes at home cooking and you can substitute other ingredients, that I explained.

All they enjoyed the cooking and the taste.  Thank you for the great review in TripAdvisor.



All they like the traditional Japanese dishes.


Thank you for coming my class. Hope you all have a wonderful rest of your duty in Tokyo.










 材料に関しては、名称が同じ野菜でも形や味が違うことが多いです。  例えば、茄子はどの国でも手に入るので夏から秋にかけてで教室ではよく使う食材です。 日本の茄子は一つが掌に収まるほどの大きさでへたが紫色です。しかし、アジア以外ではどっしりとして掌いっぱいに広げた大きさでへたが緑色の、いわゆる米茄子が主流です。教室では味噌の紹介とともに田楽味噌を作り、揚げ焼きにした茄子にのせるのですが、お客さんには日本独自の茄子は味が濃くてジューシーで美味しいですねと言われることが度々あります。


 また、同じようにきゅうりも手に入りやすい食材として多用します。 日本のきゅうりは細くやや短く、種があまりないのが特徴です。ピクルスに使われる短くて太いきゅうりもありますが、種が多く皮が厚いので和食を作る時には工夫が必要です。きゅうりも日本のものと比べると皮が厚く固いので、茄子の様にピーラーなどで縞状に剥き、縦半分に切り、種の部分はスプーンでくり抜くようにしてから同じように料理すると良いですよ、とお伝えしています。

 日本の長ネギもアジア以外で見かけることが少ないので、日本でいう青ネギのような(spring onion でも代用できると伝えています。




 jul 29th


Ramen class for solo travelars

There are 2 guests from US today.

It is sometime not easy to make a class who is booked by one person since the class opens for 2 participants at the least.

This class was miraculously offered by two girls who had been in different county and almost same time.  They both offered ramen cooking, wow!


I’m glad they enjoyed cooking ramen, the toppings and gyoza.  One of the girl had been in China and learned how to wrap gyoza ingredients with wrappers.  She shared how to make beautiful shaped gyoza.

Although they are early 20ish, they both often cook at their home and well done in the class as well.  Me,  “wait!  slow down, I can’t catch up for  tidy up, haha!”

They are so lovely girls. After we talked many things during lunch time,  I felt like I’m their mom in Japan, since I’m their mom’s age rather than their friend’s age.

I  wish their trip safety and great fortune in their future!


Thank you for giving me such a precious time! I appreciate your review on TripAdvisor.

Many thanks,






Japanese cooking Oyako-don and Tempura

There are two groups, one party of 4 from Florida US and the other party of 2 from Australia in the class.  All they are delightful and polite people so the class went very well, and nice socialized class.

Two women used to live in Japan for years ago, so they speak and understand some Japanese.  I’m always glad someone speak, someone tries to communicate in Japanese, that make me feel closer to them.

We cooked Oyako-don, tempura, spinach goma-ae ( spinach withcream sesame dressing), rice and miso soup.

Oyako-don is a rice bowl which is made of chicken and egg.  “oyako” in Japanese means parents and child (ren), you know, that is why this bowl is called as this name.

Pouring dissolved eggs into the pot for the finishing oyako-don cooking.


We also cooked tempura for the side dish. I had a request from a couple from Australia how to cook tempura in advance, and  they learned my easy tempura recipe and I believe they brought back to heir home kitchen.

The participants get turn one by one to cook tempura.  They did great! Also had fun!



After tided up kitchen, I participate to the lunch and having chat with the participants. Now I’ve relaxed and I really like this time!

Thank you for sharing your experience when you were in Japan.

Many thanks to write your review on TripAdvisor!!





Ramen class and seasoned eggs

I’ve welcomed a couple from Australia.

I got a reservation from the husband to cook ramen in the class. They are expecting their first baby, so the wife has some food restrictions.


As for our ramen menu, including gyoza and cucumber dish, there are no special attention expect “a seasoned egg” for ramen topping.  I usually serve soft boiled seasoned egg, but I’ve served hard boiled seasoned egg at this time.

I offer the seasoned egg  for ramen, since this is one of the indispensable  topping ingredient for ramen bowl in my class. The texture of eggs go with other ramen topping ingredients, such as crispy sautéed vegetables and moisture braised pork.  Most of  the ramen shops offer their original seasoned egg on the menu.   We,  Japanese like soft  boiled and runny-egg yolk which is seasoned with soy sauce flavor for ramen topping.

Preparing seasoned egg is quite easy.  Get ready soft or hard boiled eggs, soy sauce, sugar and mirin.  Warm up soy sauce, sugar and mirin in a small pot until sugar has just dissolved.  After cool it down as room temperature, transfer to a Ziploc.


Add cooked eggs into the back and marinated for over night in a fridge.


I usually cook it the day before the class, otherwise the egg doesn’t absorb the seasoning that enough.   It is also important to be peeled nicely whether the egg boiled as soft or hard.

Today’s guests enjoyed cooking and tasting  ramen as well as seasoned eggs.

Many thanks!






今回は奥さんがご主人の誕生日の為に料理教室をプレゼントしたい、という内容でした。言葉使いが知的で、素敵な方を想像していましたところ実際とてもチャーミングな方で、やはりご主人も同じく物腰柔らかで映画に出てくるような素敵なカップルでした。 いろんな方とお会いしているうちに、今度は人間観察にも興味がわいてきます。(笑)この方の誕生日プレゼントを成功させるために、出来る限りのことをしてあげたいと心を込めて教室を始めました。



麦茶はほとんどの方にとって初めて口にする飲み物で、気に入って飲んでくださる方が多いです。しかしここで毎回言葉の壁があり、”Barley” という発音がうまくできず、通じない時には大麦を絵にかいて説明することもあります。それでも通じない時がありますが(汗)そんな時は”Wheat family” 等の単語を並べて、皆さんにとって未知の食材ではない事だけは伝えています。





もはや当教室の定番となった南蛮漬け、胡麻和え、味噌田楽は今回も好評で、鰹のたたきも美味しい、と喜んで頂けてほっとしました。 そして最後にいつも手作りの抹茶ケーキをお出しするのですが、今回はお誕生日ということでサプライズに抹茶のカップケーキにフロスティングをして、キャンドルをともしてサーブしました。

 食事中もその後のお茶の時間も楽しい話が尽きず、イギリスでのお仕事など興味深い話を伺いました。 すっかりリラックスした後私が「毎回どんなお客さんが来られるのか、いつも最初は緊張してドキドキするんですよ」と話すと、彼らも「私たちも、異国の一般の家にお邪魔するからとっても緊張していましたよ」と仲良くお顔を見合わせながら仰いました。



An Interview about Japanese food culture by Polish writers

I had an interview by book authors; Polish lady who is a Tokyo expats and a man who came from London.

This is the second time to come for the interview  following the last September.

She’s been researching Japanese food culture and food ways since she has started to live in Tokyo about 2 years ago.   She has already studied Japanese seasonal event and  festivals through hear experiences and readings.  Honestly it is embarrassing that she understands some of the cultural events and its origin better than me. wow!

She requested some recipes we, Japanese commonly eat in summer.    Then I offered “Hiyashi-chuka” , “mackerel in nanban marinade, Japanese style escabeche” “Eggplant nebeshigi“and  “Corn rice”.

Hiyashi-chuka means “Cold ramen noodle”.  I like this noodle dish during hot season rather than hot ramen noodle.  Most ramen shop, Chinese restaurant and some Japanese restaurant begin to offer this dish at this season with like those posters in front of the shop.

“Now we offer Hiyashi-chuka”  summer feature in Japan

冷やし中華始めました に対する画像結果  冷やし中華始めました に対する画像結果

This dish consists of julienned cucumber, julienned chicken breast or ham, julienned omelets, tomato wedges and  chilled noodle with soy sauce based sesame flavored dressing.

If you like ramen, this noodle is worth to try during the season.  It is not easy to find this dish during fall to spring seasons since we don’t feel like willing to eat this noodle when those cold seasons though.



We also cooked nanban-zuke ( Japanese style eschabeche) and Egg plant nabeshigi ( cook with miso sauce), and rice cook with fresh corn.

They liked those menus as Japanese summer flavor.

Thank you very much to add my recipe to your book.


Many thanks.