Agedashi Tofu, Okonomiyaki pancake & more

This was a private class with 2 main dishes & more; Agedashi Tofu (deepfried Tofu dipped in Dashi sauce), Tenpura with prawns and mushrooms, and savory Okonomiyaki pancake with pork, cabbage etc.

My guest are from Chicago, USA. A talented couple of architect and doctor wishing to try some Japanese home made dishes.  I felt very close to her from the beginning, then we found out that we are both mothers of twin kids! meaning you have gone thru a lot and somehow survived until today…

There were a lot of chopping and slicing and frying to do, but we made it beautifully!  Plenty of food and fun chatting over lunch table.

Many thanks for coming!

Akiko

 

 

 

Private Class for Vegetarian Dishes with Autumn harvests

 

The main dish was chosen as Vegetarian Ramen for a guest lady from Israel who has been vegetarian for many years. Side dishes include cold fresh cabbage with Konbu marinade, Gyoza dumplings with lotus root, Kaki (persimmon) & greens dressed with creamy Tofu sauce etc.

My guest was very interested in Japanese Dashi soup stock with dried Shiitake mushrooms & Kombu kelp. Both are essential products for Umami in our cooking.

Kombu is very rich in glutamate or glutamic acid, which is contained in most vegetables but by far the most in dried Kombu. Another ingredient known for richness in glutamate is dried tomato.

Dried shiitake is known for its richness in guanylic acid or GMP, like many kinds of mushrooms around the world including dried porcini. This may be explaining why many Japanese people are deeply in love with Italian food!?

My guest lady was a medicinal food professional with a vast knowledge about Chinese herbal medicine & dietary, so it was very inspiring to share some time with her in the kitchen cooking and talking about various vegetables and foods!

Many thanks for coming!
Akiko

Tempura and Pork Ginger class!

Today was the Private class.

The 2 main dishes are Tempura and Pork Ginger.

The point of Tempura preparation is remove water from and keeping ingredients cool.

Deep frying time! We put the ingredients a little by each in to the oil then we can keep oil temperatures.

We also made Pork Ginger, Japanese sesame spinach salad and Green pepper stir fry with young fish.

It was really fun class! Thank you for coming.

Sushi platter class for a private class

I had a request for a private sushi cooking class which includes making  Nigiri-sushi, temari-sushi, sushi roll and inari-zushi  from a girl from Taiwan. She loves Japanese food and wanted to learn how to make those various kinds of sushi.

She made  an egg omelet for sushi roll and an egg  sheet for temari-zushi successfully.

Also she got how to make  good shape of nigiri-zushi  right away.

Her plating presentation is perfect!

Although she is very busy for her work during the stay in Tokyo, she came over  for learning Japanese cooking.

Thank you for choosing our Musubi Cooking Class!

Menus

A sushi platter

Salmon aburi-zushi, Inari-zushi, temari-zushi and sushi roll

spinach with roasted sesame and tofu cream sauce

Cooked Egg plant  miso-dengaku, sweet miso sauce

Miso soup

Kisshy

 

 

Ramen class for mother and daughter a private class

I’ve welcomed close mom and daughter from Indonesia this morning for ramen class.

They requested a fish dish besides the ramen course, and we cooked additional swordfish dish.  I’m glad they liked all the food, and hope they cook them back in their kitchen.

 

Making Gyoza, they made great shape of gyoza!

Miso ramen with Char-shiu, pork miso, runny egg,  sauteed vegetables, corn.

Thank you for coming ramen class!

 

Kisshy

 

 

Private Seafood Class with Japanese wine ~February 2018~

The menu was;
Swordfish and salmon with Nanban-zuke sauce
Lotus with Mentaiko(salted Cod roe with red chili)
Eggplant with sweet & savory Miso sauce
Mis soup with clams
Rice, Pickled vegetables (Nuka zuke)

My guest for this class was a foodie lady from Boston, USA, who was interested in trying some Japanese wine (not Sake but wine produced at vineyards here) with Japanese home-cooking meals.

That was a very rare request as we usually choose Sake along with Japanese cooking. Some typical Japanese favorite like Siokara (salted squid) are so yummy with our Sake, but it will be a nightmare to pair it with wine.

On the other hand, there are various seafood dishes in our traditional meals and I love drinking wines from various parts of the world, so why not?

Here we are two happy girls being adventurous and we tried a few pairing! (I am very sorry our food were almost gone in this picture but please kindly think of this as a good sign!?)

I picked up a bottle from Yamanashi prefecture and another from Nagano pref. My guest told me that she has been studying not just wine tasting but also wine making at wineries! It was a perfect opportunity for me to get an authority’s opinion about pairing Japanese dishes with our domestic wines, how she like or not-like each pairing, how she would describe each taste, etc.

The words my guest chose to express her feelings, various aromas and tastes were truly impressive but all I remember now is that it was just a very happy few hours. Next time she is here, I swear I take notes.

Many thanks for coming!
Akiko

Passionate Japanese food lovers honeymooning from Israel, Oct 2017

Many of my guests are really passionate about Japanese food and it is always a great honor to get a chance to meet up with such people. This honeymoon couple  from Israel was definitely one of them.  They were fascinated to try a Japanese style vegetarian meal, including Tofu.

So the main dish was Sushi rolls with green vegetables, pickles and sesame. The couple chose a private lesson so we also did a few vegetable side dishes with three different sauces; sesame sauce, sweet miso sauce and creamy tofu sauce, as well as miso soup with vegetable stock.

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They were also very knowledgeable about Japanese history and interested in some antique plates and traditional  earthenwares, too.

One of my favorite Japanese earthenware is Oribe-yaki, old potteries in Gifu prefecture and known for its dark green colored glaze. I used my Oribe plates for our eggplant dish at this class and my guests kindly told me that they liked them  as well as various food we prepared together.

The next day, the couple surprised me with a news that they bought a rice cooker to take home after my class!

I hope they are now enjoying cooking Japanese food at their sweet home…

Many thanks for coming!

Akiko

Heard about Nuka-Zuke? -Private class on October 2017

Sometimes my experience with visiting guests reminds me of good old day’s memory with my grandmother, who was always busy in her kitchen.

Prior to this class in early October, I received a very interesting request from  a Canadian lady, who is keen to learn about fermented vegetables, if I can show her an active Nuka bed for Nuka-Zuke.

Nuka is the rice bran, looks and smells like wheat. After rice harvest, the bran is taken away from rice and we eat only the white core part of rice. But this rice bran can be used for fermented vegetables, or Japanese pickles, called Nuka-Zuke.

We add a little salt and some water to rice bran powder, which makes a perfect bed to culture lactic acid bacteria.  Once the condition is settled, you may add your favorite vegetables like cucumbers, carrots, radish etc.

The problem with this fermented pickles making is that you need to stir the Nuka bed at least once every day, or the good bacteria die out and bad ones become more active, in other words your vegetables would get rotten. My grandmother used to do all these works for her family and I enjoyed eating her beautiful works as a kid.

Yet it was so much work in modern days when you have a job outside your house, so my mother did not keep it going, nor did I, util I received this inquiry from my guest lady.

Suddenly I remembered what I used to be eating and wondered if I can do something. Thanks to our internet age, I found a Japanese pickles company who sells Nuka-bed for fridge!  You don’t need to take care of your Nuka every single day but once in a week with this product.

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So here we are at the class, with my Nuka-Zuke works of carrots and cucumbers, as well as mackerel with Miso sauce.  As is well known, Miso is  one of our traditional seasonings and it is made by fermenting steamed soy beans with salt.

I hope my guest liked my home made Nuka-Zuke.

Many thanks for coming!

Akiko

 

A private class on August 7th

I welcomed a lady from UK this morning.  She requested salmon-nanban marinade as a main dish.

During our cooking, she asked me how to cook tempura, so I decided to cook vegetable tempura as a side dish. She liked shiso leaves tempura, crispy green leaves, as you see in the middle of tempura plate.

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She said she will use fresh sage leaves in her garden instead of shiso leaves.  That is such a great idea!

Many people from outside of japan  keen to cook this shiso tempra at their home, but it is not easy to find except Japan unfortunately.  Then her advise reminds me for cooking school in NY, I learned the crispy fried sage garnish, which is slimier to tempura.  I’ll let the people that sage leave is good substitution  from now on!

 

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She liked the food we prepared very much. We have time to talk about her life in London and her trip in Japan.  It was really interesting and time flied.

Hope you cook fresh sage tempura to your loving grand children!

Many thanks!

Kisshy