Welcome to my blog.

After a few random posts I've decided to dedicate this blog to my life long project of Japanese food
and culture (and my life in general, especially my travels).

Since my first taste of sushi back in 1997 I've been interested in, and frequently been making
Japanese food.
My interest in the country and culture started long before and continues to evolve.
I was lucky to finally visit Japan in October 2008 and hope to be back soon.
In July 2012 I visited Japantown in San Fransisco, the next best thing!
I was lucky to be back in 2015, 2016 and 2017 thanks to the fact that we now have family living in California.
Both small and big adventures will from now on, as time permits, be shared with you.

I will post other recipes and pictures too, mainly cooking projects, plants and art projects
(including my new love - making kumihimo braided objects).

I hope you'll find it interesting, and feel free to leave a comment or ask questions!

I write mainly in English, but there will be some Norwegian too, especially posts about things
that mainly have Norwegian interest. Tutorials are bi-lingual.

Sunday, 29 March 2009

Growing shiso (perilla)

Good news... the first shiso shots have surfaced! I guess it's about 30-40 sprouts that have surfaced now. It looks really good, just like last year.

Soon I'll replant them in individual pots and they'll grow nice and big. Happy times for me and the other 3 that are waiting for their plants.

If the nice weather continues and spring really is here, I'll try to plant daikon next week.

Hang in there for exciting updates!!

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Various cooking this week, bento and lotus root

Yum! Lotus root chips.....

This week has included two days of bento at work, tonkatsu and making lotus root chips. My daughter went crazy for thoose chips! Will do them again now that I've found fresh lotus root here in Oslo. It wasn't so large, but it made great chips!

Bento with rice, tamago, pickles, chicken, carrots and cabbage.
The day after I had rice, pickles, bok choy, chicken and some aloe vera segments as well.

All wrapped up in my furoshiki and ready to go!

Slicing lotus root on my newly bought mandoline. I peeled the root and left it in water with some vinegar to prevent it from colouring.

Cooking lotus root chips in sunflower oil.

Monday, 16 March 2009

Green tea ice cream

Ok, this is my first attempt making this ice cream. I thought I'd start a new post with the pictures.

Here's my ingredients all lined up. Organic milk and eggs. Matcha from Japan. Very few ingredients and a quite simple recipe.

I whipped the eggs with sugar and milk over a pan of boiling water. I stirred quite a while. Then cooled it down in a bowl of cold water and added the dissolved matcha.
Amazing colors!

The final whipped cream goes in, gave it a stir and off to be frozen in a plastic container.

This is how it looked after the second stirring. It's very creamy already. Maybe it'll be done tonight?

And here's our dinner by the way... maki with shrimps and california rolls + inari (my favorite). Very lavish on a Monday, but hey...

The result: (It was good, good! I've stopped myself from eating it all...)

Sunday, 15 March 2009

Trip to Japan, oct 08

Long overdue... posting a few pictures from my trip to Japan in October 2008.
We landed at Kansai airport and spent time in Osaka and Kyoto before heading for 2 days in Naoshima island. A wonderful, wonderful place filled with art, architecture, good food and peace... Sadly, we had to leave, and finished our trip in Tokyo, which was exiting as well. But not that peaceful...

Here's our hotel in Naoshima, design Tadao Ando. One of his few wooden buildings. And the beach....

View from my veranda. Our first day was sunny, but the next was overcast and pretty windy. Still, it was very pleasant weather for October! In Norway it was rain and +5 degrees...

One of the many art pieces around the island. A Shinto shrine in a new interpretation.

In Naoshima Ferry terminal I found this interesting display of local seafood.. I didn't get any of this, but I got some really nice nori, locally made. Even my 3 year-old loves that nori....

Japanese cooking, part 1

After reading a blog called Tess´s Japanese Kitchen while looking for a recipe, I've decided to post some of my ventures into the world of Japanese cooking as well.

I get recipes several places, from cookbooks, online, from my Japanese colleague...

My first project this week will be: Green tea ice cream + planting shiso (perilla).
I planted shiso last year with much luck, but sadly my plants died in the fall before I got to freeze anything or conserve it. This year I will plant daikon as well, with seeds I brought from Japan.

Green tea ice cream

2 egg yolks
5 tbsp sugar
3/4 cup of milk
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp green tea powder
3 tbsp hot water

Dissolve tea in water, set aside.
In a bowl, whisk eggs and sugar. Put the bowl over medium heat and add milk.
Whisk until thickening. Let it cool and add green tea mixture. Add whipped cream
and freeze in ice cream-maker or freezer.

Pictures in separate post above.

Monday 16.03.:
The ice cream is now well on it's way. I've stirred it twice, and had a small taste. It's fabulous! Can't wait to have a BIG scoop. This is one of the things I really miss from Japan...

Planting shiso (perilla)

Planting is set for Wednesday.
Got my seeds and pots ready, I'll get soil tomorrow.

The seeds are planted. I'll post pictures when the first sprouts surface. I tried to repeat what I did last year when I got such a good result. We live in a different house now, so my window is angeled different, but I hope there will be enough sun anyway.

Daikon seeds to be planted a bit later in the spring.