Yee Seng Oriental in Myaree

Posted August 22nd, 2015 in Japanese Stores in Perth, Perth WA | No Comments »

Before I moved to North of the River I lived in Winthrop and whenever I needed Asian grocery I went to this place – Yee Seng Oriental Supermarket.

Yee Seng is located in Hulme Court in Myaree, just opposite Sundays Everyday and Perth Kimuchi.

The Japanese section used to be small, but now it’s expanded and you can find lots of Japanese & Korean grocery items at this store.

Most of the items, including rice, noodle and konnyaku, are actually tad cheaper at Coventry Village, but I still like Yee Seng because you can find more variety of Japanese food here.

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For example, some frozen ready-to-cook food such as pre-cooked tempura, korokke, and crumbled fish are not sold at Coventry Village (to my knowledge).

vegetables

You can get some Asian vegetables here too.

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This is my another favourite section – drinks.  There are lots of Korean drinks that are at low cost.  They sell Korean version of Yakult cheaper than Yakult (although I’ve never tried as I always go with Yakult).

I love Hulme Court – there are lots of good grocery shops and restaurants/takeaway shops. 🙂

Yee Seng Oriental Supermarket
36 Hulme Ct, Myaree WA 6154
Tel : (08) 9330 9096
Mon-Sun 9:00 ~ 19:00

Salmon Teriyaki Donburi

Posted August 20th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

salmon-teriyaki-top

Eating Japanese food makes me feel I’m home and I love that moment.  In Japan I used to eat seafood almost everyday, and I lived near a big lake so seafood was part of my life, really.  I don’t know why seafood is so expensive in Australia – they are both island countries but in Japan you can get fresh delicious seafood at much cheaper price.  That’s why I don’t eat seafood as much here in Perth now 🙁

But I did have a craving for nice salmon so I made salmon teriyaki donburi for dinner tonight.  It’s simple to make and you’ll just need those basic Japanese sauces only – soy sauce, sake, and mirin! (And, fresh salmon fillets, of course.)

My old post of Salmon Teriyaki recipe is here – on this recipe salmon is cooked in the oven.  Tonight I cooked the salmon in a frying pan.

fish

I love skin – I eat chicken with skin on, and I eat most of fish with skin.

salmon-teriyaki-side

I served salmon on top of rice so I can enjoy the sauce-drizzled rice.  (・ω<)  Yum.
(on the photo, skin side is down)

For the side, I blanched spinach and seasoned with just bonito-flake (katsuo-bushi 鰹節), roasted sesame seeds, and a dash of soy sauce.

Don’t forget freshly cooked steamed rice!

salmon-teriyaki-side1

<Salmon Teriyaki Donburi> serves 2

  • 2fillets/400~500g Salmon (I used Fresh Skin-on Atlantic Salmon Fillets)
  • 1tablespoon Sugar (I used raw sugar)
  • 3tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 3tablespoons Mirin
  • 1tablespoon Sake

 

  1. Place sugar, soy sauce, mirin and sake in a small pot.  Bring to gentle boil, and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly.  Set aside.
  2. Heat a frying pan (wide enough to place salmon fillets), and spray oil.  Place salmon fillets, skin side down, and grill over medium~low heat until the skin is coloured crisped.  Gently flip them over, and cook other sides.
  3. Once salmon is cooked, remove from the pan and place into the pan of sauce.
  4. Serve salmon on top of steamed rice, and drizzle with sauce.

 


Kitta Exhibition of Natural Japanese Dyeing

Posted August 19th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

Kitta

Yesterday morning after I dropped off my son at school, I headed to Kitta’s exhibition in North Fremantle.  (I wrote about her workshops & exhibition here)

Kitta is a Japanese artist who lives in Okinawa in Japan, and she creates beautiful fabrics and clothes dyed using natural Japanese techniques.  She is temporary visiting Perth now to carry out rare natural dyeing workshops using Japanese dyes such as Ryukyu Indigo, and  also exhibit some of her beautiful works at Poteau in North Fremantle.

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Kitta

Lovely entrance.

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The whole exhibition place was set up beautifully.

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I was really amazed to see how beautifully you can dye fabric using natural materials.  Everything was made from scratch by Kitta.  There’re dress, skirts, some fabrics, socks, sarongs, etc created by Kitta, and also some other artists’ kitchenwares available to purchase at the exhibition.

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Everything was natural-themed, and even these wooden rails were handmade just for this exhibition.

I tried on some of the dresses.  They were really comfortable to wear, and the colour was so beautiful.  I also loved the uniqueness of the shape.  Everything is one of a kind.

I didn’t purchase any dress yesterday as I wanted to think about it first (the exhibition is still on), but I had a big crash on one of the plates that was made by Japanese artist.  I don’t know why but I didn’t buy it yesterday and I’ve been regretting it ever since, so I asked my friend to buy it for me as she is going there tomorrow. 🙂

Kitta will be in Perth for another few weeks only and once she is back to Japan there is no way to purchase her work (she doesn’t even sell online), so if you are interested please visit her exhibition.

Kitta Exhibition  Sat 15th ~ Fri 28th August 2015

at Poteau 1/98 Stirling Hwy, North Fremantle
www.poteauselect.com

Mon 1pm – 6pm
Tue – Sun 11am – 6pm (closed on Sun 23rd)

This exhibition is organised with the assistance of the NGO Earth Network.

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Nimono – Konnyaku & Beans

Posted August 15th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

konnyku-nimono

 

You must have at least one dish that you love and miss to eat once in awhile.  In my case, it ought to be nimono.

Nimono is simple Japanese simmered dish, and the ingredients vary.  You can make nimono with many things but the main ingredients are usually vegetables.  Meat, seafood or tofu are often added, and it forms a great side dish to the table.

Sukiyaki, niku-jaga are popular nimono and you might have heard of them.  I love simple ones such as, nimono with eggplant & tuna (tinned), Chinese cabbage & chicken pieces, and daikon radish, root vegetables & squid.

After moved to North of the River, I often go to Coventry Village to buy some Japanese groceries, and when I do, I always but ingredients for oden.  I will write an easy recipe for oden (iconic Japanese winter dish) here on Umeboss some another time, but I had 1 pack of konnyaku left in the fridge and I decided to make nimono last night to accompany juicy karaage!

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<Nimono with Konnyaku & Beans>  serves 3~4

  • 1 pack Konnyaku (grey or white is available in Perth)
  • 1 cup Frozen green beans, cut
  • 90g Tinned salmon
  • 1 teaspoon Dashi powder
  • 2 tablespoons Sake
  • 1 tablespoon Mirin
  • 1 tablespoon Soy sauce

 

  1. Cut konnyaku into pieces.  I cut into small triangle.  Score konnyaku with sharp knife eso the flavour goes into the konnyaku.
  2. Place konnyaku in a colander, and pour boiling water (to remove the smell).
  3. Place drained konnyaku, beans and drained salmon in a pan with 1 cup of water and the rest of the ingredients.  Bring to boil, and simmer for 10~15 minutes.  Serve with steamed rice.

Beef Teriyaki Niku-Dango

Posted August 11th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

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When I had leftover beef mince after cooking Japanese curry  , I quickly made this niku-dango (meatball) in another frying pan.  It’s a super quick recipe (done in 10 minutes!) and I thought I should show the recipe here 🙂

All you need is beef mince, minced garlic, and usual sauces for Japanese cuisine : sake (cooking wine), mirin (cooking sweet wine), and soy sauce.

 

teriyaki-beef-dango

 

<Teriyaki Niku-Dango>  makes around 10 balls

  • 500g Beef mince
  • 1 teaspoon Minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Sake
  • 2 tablespoons Mirin
  • 2 tablespoons Soy sauce

 

  1. Mix garlic mince with beef.
  2. Heat a frying pan and spray oil.  Shape beef mince into balls, and grill both side.
  3. Pour over the sauces, and simmer until the sauce thickens.
  4. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve with steamed rice & steamed vegetables.

 


“Bread of Happiness”

Posted August 10th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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There will be a free Japanese film shown at Hyogo Cultural Centre in City Beach this Friday.

The film “Shiawase no Pan” (“Bread of Happiness”) is a 2012 Japanese drama film directed by Yukiko Mishima and starring Tomoyo Harada, Yo Oizumi and Kanna Mori.

<Plot> ” Rie and Nao own a bakery-cum-restaurant named Mani on the shores of Lake Toya, Hokkaido. Nao is the baker who bakes the bakery’s bread, while Rie is the chef who prepares the food in the restaurant. Graced with beautiful scenery throughout the four seasons, this shop serves a variety of customers, some of whom are experiencing personal problems. However, after they exit from the shop, they feel only happiness in their mind.”
– from official website

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I love this kind of soft Japanese drama.

There will be no admission fee, and some bread + drink will be provided to the visitors as well.

***  Shiawase-No-Pan **

When:
Friday 14th August 2015, 6PM~

Where:
Hyogo Cultural Centre
20 Kalinda Drive, City Beach
Western Australia 6015
(08) 9385 9002


Japanese Festival in Spring

Posted August 4th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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It’s August now and we are in the middle of winter in Perth.  It’s cold, but I noticed the day is getting longer compared to few weeks ago.  Spring may be just around the corner.

As spring approaches, I’m getting busy for the preparations for an event which will be held on 24th October in Melville.  I’m in a committee and in charge of kids activities.  This event, recently finalized its name as “Melville Matsuri”, is a festival introducing Japanese culture and background to local people.  It’s a charity event and there will be a lot of activities for all ages at a gold coin donation or even for FREE!

For children, there will be…

  • Yo-Yo (mizu-fusen)
  • Jinbei (Japan’s traditional summer dress) dress-up & photo booth
  • lucky dip
  • Japanese letter drawing on the body (like temporary tattoo using a non-toxic pen)
  • origami
  • uchiwa (Japan’s traditional fan) making

and much more.  There will also be a grand final of paper-plane competition for primary school children in City of Melville during the festival.

For adults, there will be…

  • ikebana (Japanese flower arrangement) demonstration & workshop
  • Japanese tea ceremony demonstration & workshop
  • kimono (Japanese traditional gown) demonstration & workshop

and much more.  Lots of displays & demonstration featuring Japanese culture (bonsai, taiko performance, cosplay etc) too.  And, of course, some yummy Japanese food & drinks!!

The final flyer hasn’t been completed yet, but as soon as it’s done I will post here again.

Melville Matsuri is on Saturday 24th October, 3pm ~ 9pm :
Paper plane competition 4pm – 5pm
Paper Plane film from 7pm – 9pm
All activities, workshop & food stalls 3pm – 6 or 7pm
At … Frederick Baldwin Park, Le Souef Dve, Kardinya WA

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On the same month, there will be another Japanese event in City Beach.  There is Hyogo Cultural Centre in City Beach, and Shichigosan ceremony will be held there on 10th of October.

Their vision is –
“To give these children an opportunity to experience this festival that they miss in Japan. It is the first time the children are officially allowed to wear their traditional clothes (also rite of passage).  The special ages of the children are 7, 5 & 3 years of age. The children are also given special 1000 year old sweets (Chitose-Ame) to ensure a long life.” (- from their 2014 website)  (they haven’t created 2015 version yet)

It’s a great opportunity for families with children aged 3, 5 or 7 who can’t go back to Japan but still want to cerebrate shichigosan.  They can do it here in Perth.  There will be some food stalls as well.  I’m not in committee of this event, but I am planning to sell some food at the stall.  My children are 4 & 1 years old, and we are going back to Japan next year so we will be cerebrating shichigosan then – so I’m not attending this event with my family.

Perth Shichigosan Festival is on Saturday 10th October, possibly 12pm ~ (not sure yet)
At … Hyogo Cultural Centre
20 Kalinda Dve, City Beach WA
(08) 9385 9002

I will update when it’s close to the date!

 


Japanese Pop-culture Workshop

Posted July 30th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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Love another side of Japan?  If  you like Japanese anime, you may enjoy some cosplay experience.

Personally I like cosplay!  I wouldn’t do too much skin-showing, but I love to dress up in a totally different character.  🙂  That’d be fun!

There was a cosplay show at Japan Festival (I wrote about this festival here and here), so I know there’re some cosplay-lovers in Perth too.  For some people, cosplay may sound wicked, but I bet everyone has dreamed about being someone else once?

cosplay

Kids cosplay is so cute.

On 22nd August 2015, there will be Japanese Pop-culture introduction workshop in City Beach where you can experience the cosplay world and also get some tips about how and what.  There will also be a workshop for Manga drawing as well.  I remember drawing manga when I was a teenager :p  I was so into it and I still like drawing.

 

When:
22nd August 2015,  14:00 – 15:30

Where:
Hyogo Cultural Centre in City Beach

Admission:
$5  (Free tea & coffee, cookies are included)
Free entry for Hyogo members

– Attack on Titan Levi cosplay by Lecturer
– Asian ball joined doll (by Volks Japan) exhibit
– Manga character drawing workshop (please bring your own drawing materials)

For more information or to book, please contact Hyogo Cultural Centre at
hyogoprogram@iinet.net.au

 

 


My weird personality – Blood type AB & Pisces

Posted July 28th, 2015 in Ume's Thought | No Comments »

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I’ve lived over 30 years and I sure know it is my personality, but it’s really tiring to keep asking myself – “am I doing enough??!”

Ever since I was a teenager, I couldn’t have more than 2 hours of sitting down relaxing doing nothing.  I tend to think I’m wasting time if I’m not doing / achieving anything, and if I think I wasn’t really productive that day I feel upset at the end of the day and that makes me feel bad.  I do want to relax and have at least one day thinking nothing at all, but I can’t!  Is anyone like me? :-I

Now, I’m a full-time mum and spend most of my time with kids everyday around the house.  If you are a parent, you know being with kids uses lots of energy and at the end of the day I’m exhausted.  I do home business (Bagelier) on occasional bases, and I think I do housework pretty well… I try to keep house as tidy as possible, and cook breakfast, lunch & dinner almost everyday.

But, I still feel that I need to do something.  😮

After kids sleep, I often recall what happened on the day.  I “know” I should just forget about everything and relax on the couch watching some movie, but I just “can’t”.

Hmm I’m losing the point why I’m writing this…  I guess I just wanted to write down what I’m feeling.  I want to be with kids as much as possible and I know after my little one starts going to school I will have plenty of time doing “something”, so I will have to wait that for another few years.  I should be enjoying this moment and should think I’m doing things that I should be doing.  If I can really think so, I will be all relaxed and just enjoy my alone time  🙂

 


Colour of Wonder – Kitta Workshop & Exhibition

Posted July 22nd, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

Kitta

A friend of mine is organising this wonderful workshop & exhibition of her creation here in Perth in August (next month!).  Places for the workshops are LIMITED! ↓↓

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– ” Kitta creates fabrics and clothes dyed using natural Japanese techniques. Based in Okinawa, they specialise in the use of Ryukyu Indigo. This August, Kitta will visit Perth to exhibit a variety of their creations and run workshops that will show you their dyeing techniques.” –

At the workshops, you will be experiencing her world of “colour” dyeing.  It is a Japanese method of dyeing, and is truly unique and beautiful.

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Colour of Wonder Facebook page

DATE: 22 – 23rd August 2015

PLACE: Pollard Designs studio (2 Otway place, Bedfordale 6112 WA)

Contact: kittaustralia@hotmail.com

<Workshop >
22-23rd August
kitta 2 days Japanese style natural plant dyeing work shop at Pollard studio (Bedfordale)
http://pollarddesigns.com/
You can choose to create a Dress, a Wrap-around Skirt, or a Bag.
The workshop will take place over two days – the first day for dyeing and the second day for sewing. (The finalcolour will depend on the materials chosen, the weather and
other factors).

(time schedule)
●22nd Saturday
10:00-Meet at Pollard Designs studio.
Bush walking to see nature color in the bush.
11:00-Start making color vat in the fire.
12:00-Japanese style Lunch
13:00-Explanation of the process of dyeing.
kitta’s slide show and Sawa’s guitar performance.
14:00-Begin dyeing
17:00-end of the first day

●23rd Sunday
10:00-Meet at Pollard Designs studio.
Beginning of hand sewing.
12:00-Japanese style Lunch
13:00-Sewing continues (if you finish early you can try
another experience of dyeing)
16:00-slide show about Japanese Ryukyu indigo
17:00-end of the work shop

(Work shop Fee)
●$300 for 2 days workshop including Japanese style lunch, materials (wrap skirt ,dress or bag ), tea and coffee.

(Things you should bring for the work shop)
●An apron and hat that is okay to get dirty

(Booking)
●All enquiries about enrolments please Email to
kittaustralia@hotmail.com

<Exhibition>

15-28th August
Kitta Exhibition at Poteau (North Fremantle)
http://www.poteauselect.com/
Kitta Exhibition opening is held on 15th August.

 

 

I’m sure you will have a beautiful experience over these two days!!!  Please note there are only 3 seats left for the workshop…  secure yours now!

 

 


Say Hi to Robots When Staying in Japan

Posted July 22nd, 2015 in Japan, Ume's Interests | No Comments »

Henn-na (weird) Hotel….  This new hotel has just opened its door this month in Nagasaki in Japan.  As the name suggests, this hotel is not an ordinal hotel at all -it is staffed completely by robots!

You will be greeted by humanoid robots & a robot dinosaur at reception.  Functional droids are on hand to cart luggage to the hotel’s 72 rooms, staff luggage lockers and clean as well.  Guestroom doors are accessed by facial-recognition technology, and at the end of the stay guests pay on the machine at the front-desk.

This hotel is not only about having robots, it’s more about being environmentally friendly.  This is an official hotel of Nagasaki Huis Ten Bosch amusement park, and this park was opened in 1992 as an “Eco-Friendly Future City.”

The concept of this hotel needed to be environmentally friendly, including buildings and facilities.  Plus, they wanted to create a hotel featuring contrivances to provide a comfortable, even fun stay at a reasonable price. To achieve this, there are several unique features at this hotel, including… ↓

– Guest rooms do not have refrigerators.

– Guests can watch television on a tablet device.

– All rooms feature a cutting-edge “radiant panel” air conditioning system which will detect body heat in rooms and adjust the temperature.

– Keyless Stay

– No pyjamas, bathrobes etc are provided.

I think, considering the concept of this hotel and also seeing the very reasonable pricing, this sounds like a great place to stay (and visiting Huis Ten Bosch amusement park would be a bonus).  I’m sure my 4-year-old son will love being greeted by a robot dinosaur!

Huis Ten Bosch

Henn-na Hotel’s website is simple and looks easy to follow.

The hotel is currently in its first phase. A second stage is due to be completed in 2016 adding an additional 72 rooms.


New & Old …

Posted July 15th, 2015 in Japan | No Comments »

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Kyoto, seventh largest city in Japan, is one of the popular tourists’ destination in Japan and is my most favourite city of all.  I love the character, history and the uniqueness of this city! My hometown is quite close to Kyoto and I used to go out a lot to Osaka & Kyoto area while I lived in Japan.  When people ask me where to visit in Japan, I always say Kyoto because there are so many things to see and experience there – lots of temples, shrines, beautiful old cities and delicious Kyoto food.

While visiting Kyoto, if you are lucky you may encounter with real Maiko-san (an apprentice geiko (not exactly same as geisha) in Kyoto).  I’ve visited Kyoto so many times but I’ve only seen the real one once.  Don’t mistake real Maiko-san with people dressed up like Maiko-san.  It’s one of popular activities in Kyoto for tourists to dress up like Maiko and wonder around the city!  I’ve seen foreign people taking photos with tourists in kimono :p

I’m flying back to Japan next year for holiday and I’d like to take my sons to Kyoto if we have a chance.  Wonder around Kamogawa River, Arashiyawa and Gion… That would be relaxing.  And if we are lucky we may find Maiko-san hurrying to work.  If we are really really lucky, we may get to see this … ↓

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It’s kinda funny to see Maiko-san commuting on an electric vehicle but I guess it’s more practical than walking or riding a bicycle as they have to keep their outfit and make-up nice and tidy for work.  Some Maiko-san use “walking bicycle” or “Segway” which is quite cool.  New generation, really. But I still like the old fashion way! Haha

 


Easy Maze-Gohan with Tinned Salmon

Posted June 17th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the things I used to do on my free-time was standing in the kitchen alone wondering what I can cook, and making whatever came to my mind.  But these days I’m finding it’s hard to spot my “free” time and I can hardly stay in the kitchen alone with two little ones nagging for food or play.  It really stresses me out sometimes, because I want to cook something for them which is nutritious and with variety of ingredients, but on the other hand if preparation takes long then they will start drag me out from the kitchen.

Here is one of my life-saving recipe.  Maze-gohan is seasoned rice with variety of ingredients.  Different from takikomi-gohan, maze-gohan is plain steamed rice mixed with cooked ingredients (where takikomi-gohan is cooked rice with ingredients and seasonings).

Maze-gohan … plain steamed rice + cooked & seasoned ingredients
Takikomi-gohan … uncooked rice + raw ingredients + seasonings cooked together

salmon-cha-han

 

This maze-gohan with salmon is a hit for my 1-year-old too.  The dish is done in 10 minutes. 🙂

<Maze-Gohan with Tinned Salmon>  serves 3~4 kids

  • 95g Tinned Pink Salmon in springwater, drained
  • 1 portion of Frozen Chopped Spinach, defrosted
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 bowls of Steamed Rice
  • 1 teaspoon Sesame Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Soy Sauce
  • White Sesame Seeds to sprinkle

 

  1. Heat a frying pan, and spray oil.
  2. Cook salmon and spinach, stirring, for 1~2 minutes.
  3. Beat egg in a small bowl, and pour into the frying pan.  Stir using chopsticks or wooden spatula to scramble.
  4. Drizzle sesame oil, and season with soy sauce.  Sprinkle sesame seeds and turn off the heat.
  5. Mix with steamed rice.

You can add small amount of oyster sauce or more soy sauce if you like.  I use leftover cooked rice from day before; warm up the rice in the microwave before mixing with salmon.  You can cook this salmon first (while your kids are taking nap or watching tv) and keep in the fridge.  When they are hungry, just mix with warm rice and done!

 

 


NEW Place to Get Japanese Food – FUJI MART in Perth

Posted June 6th, 2015 in Japanese Stores in Perth, Perth WA | 10 Comments »

It’s been awhile since I wrote about grocery stores in Perth where you can buy Japanese products.  Nowadays most Asian grocery shops sell Japanese food, and even supermarkets such as Coles and Woolworths sell some Japanese food on the international isle.  – But they are always the same products : soy sauce, wasabi, nori sheets, mayonnaise, sauces, seasonings… some basic things only.  So for Japanese people who live in Perth and want something more “Japanese”, they’d go to Nippon Food in Subiaco where they can buy more variety of Japanese food and goods.

Now, however, there is a new Japanese grocery shop recently opened in Subiaco (same suburb as Nippon Food!)  – Fuji Mart.

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Fuji Mart is a newly opened shop which caters variety of Japanese products including food and also some home wares.  They did a big opening ceremony at the shop few weeks ago which I missed – everything in store was 20% OFF!

The shop is conveniently located on Station Street in Subiaco, just above Woolworths car park (which you’ll pay $0 for 90minutes parking).  You’ll find this store in front of the escalator from/to the car park.

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Inside the shop resemble a Japanese convenience store or supermarket.  Products are displayed neatly and everything is easy to see.  The store manager at this store has worked at Fuji Mart in Eastern State for a decade, and I can see he has some skill to display a retail shop –  WELL DONE!

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And, at Fuji Mart, you will find much cheaper price compared to elsewhere.  Some items are cheapest here to my knowledge!

You can also buy some “100 yen goods” here at Fuji Mart in Subiaco at $2.50.

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I was quite amazed by the variety of goods sold here.  You can even find a kit for Japanese calligraphy, magonote (back scratcher), and takoyaki-making plate!!!

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I definitely recommend this store to anyone.  If you haven’t been here, just come!  The products are selling super fast so you may find some empty shelves, but they are ordering stocks and hopefully once the store starts rolling on track you can shop everything you need for a Japanese feast!

Fuji Mart

Shop 13-14, 29 Station Street, Subiaco WA
Tel : (08) 6162 8608

Mon-Fri 9:30 ~ 18:00
Sat 9:00 ~ 17:00
Sun 11:00 ~ 17:00
Public holidays closed

 


Spicy Chilli Teriyaki Chicken

Posted May 28th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

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Since I met my husband, I became a chilli eater.  I like spicy food now and love eating KFC chicken with chili sauce & rice.  It sounds weird, but it’s Indonesian style I think! When it comes to chilli, my husband loves anything including chili sauce, wasabi, chilli powder and Jalapeño.

He started eating chicken karaage with Japanese mayonnaise & Sriracha chili sauce ever since he had one at Mr Samurai restaurant on Barrac street in Perth.  (the restaurant closed few years ago)  I’m not really into this chili sauce and am just happy with Japanese mayonnaise, but this chili sauce is a must when he eats karaage.

chili

One day I was cooking teriyaki chicken and thought of  adding something extra. Something different for a change.  I added Sriracha.

spicy-teriyaki-chicken

I actually liked it.  Ordinal teriyaki sauce with some kick in it.  It went well with Japanese mayonnaise too.

chli teriyaki chicken

Here is the recipe.

Chilli Teriyaki Chicken
Recipe (serves 2)

  • Chicken Thigh Fillet … 2 (appx 350g)  with skin
  • Sugar … 1 tablespoon
  • Sake (cooking wine) … 1 tablespoon
  • Soy Sauce … 1.5 tablespoon
  • Mirin (sweet wine) … 1/2 tablespoon
  • Sriracha Chilli Sauce … 1 teaspoon

 

  1. Mix all ingredients except chicken.
  2. Heat 1/2 tablespoon oil in a frying pan, and grill chicken thigh over high heat – skin side first.  When golden coloured, turn the chicken over and cook on low heat.  Add the sauce, and simmer until the sauce thickens.
  3. Serve with steamed rice and Japanese mayonnaise.

 


Japanese Tea Ceremony in Subiaco

Posted May 16th, 2015 in Perth WA | 2 Comments »

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There were Japanese tea ceremony sessions at Green Tea House in Subiaco today, and I headed there to experience my first ever cha-no-yu (tea ceremony in Japanese).

I must say it was a great experience and that 30 minutes gave me a special feeling – surrounded by Japanese instructors and people who have interests in Japan – I felt warm and was reminded what special culture and tradition my home country has.

I didn’t expect to see this many people at the session today.  Some people had to stay stand-up for the whole session.  Tea ceremony is normally carried out where people sit down, but they used chairs due to the height of counter table in the shop.

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It was actually my first time to come down to this shop.  There’re many beautiful Japanese tea cups, tea pots, plates, kitchenware and ornaments sold at the shop.  They are very well-made (not cheap ones like you get from Daiso) yet the prices are really reasonable.

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The tea ceremony started.  All the guests were focusing on the host’s movement.

Wagashi (sweet to accompany bitter green tea) was served to each guests.

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Tea was served.  Made one-by-one.

The wagashi was quite sweet to balance the bitterness of matcha green tea.

I’ve never had matcha green tea prepared in a proper manner like this.  I imagined the tea would be very bitter but it wasn’t that much.  As I was told by the instructor, I raised the tea bowl (to show appreciation to the host), turned the bowl half way in clockwise, then drank it.  I really liked the tea.  I was imagining, in old time in Japan, people were drinking tea like this, and tea time was very special moment.

The whole ceremony reminded me of beauty of Japan.  As soon as I got home I called my mum and asked if she still have kimono in Japan.  I will bring some kimono to Perth next time I fly there!!    Kimono is very expensive, and it’s such a waste if not worn !

 


Hinata Cafe – a fine day

Posted May 4th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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Hinata Cafe  was held last week with lots of visitors experiencing rich feast of Japanese culture, craft and food.  I was bit worried about the weather but it became such a lovely day.

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Luckily I could be there from the beginning and could enjoy taiko performance.  I loved the food at the cafe – people were so nice and working hard to serve warm healthy Japanese cafe food…  My son had sakura-mochi (kashiwa-mochi had been sold out already!) from the cafe.  I told him he can eat the sakura leaves too but he peeled the leaves off :p  I guess the leaves were too salty for him.
I enjoyed takoyaki and hand-made juice there.  I thought the takoyaki was much better than the one I had at Japan Festival in CBD few months ago.

I wish I could shop without my son clinging on me 😛  There were nice hand-made things that I wanted to browse around, and also wanted to experience the tea ceremony as well but I couldn’t (*_*)  I got their contact details so I will contact them and shop online I guess…


Matcha Demonstration at T2

Posted April 27th, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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Matcha – finely ground powder of specially grown and processed green tea – is known as one of traditional Japanese tea and I get to see lots of “matcha”  products everywhere in the world such as matcha ice cream, matcha latte (I miss it!!), and matcha cheese cake, just to name a few.  However I don’t think many people actually know what matcha really is and how real matcha tastes like, and especially how to prepare and drink matcha.  Do you?

Well, guess what.  I actually do not know how to prepare matcha (even though I’m Japanese!) in the way it’s supposed to be, and I don’t think many Japanese people do either.  So it was not a surprise for me when I was told that some staff at T2, one of Australia’s largest tea shops, did not know what to prepare and drink matcha.
Nowadays you will need to go to some class to learn sadou (茶道 : the traditional etiquette of preparing and drinking tea) if you’d like to learn how to prepare matcha.

Eisetsu-san, a Japanese tea ceremony instructor who lives here in Perth, approached T2 after seeing 2 jugs of matcha green tea at their tasting counter – one was matcha x lemonnade, and another was matcha with some cut fruits in it.  Well, you probably can drink matcha like this and it could be an “Australian style” or a new way of drinking matcha, but it was far from matcha’s original method of drinking.  Drinking matcha actually involves preparation as well, and Eisetsu-san wanted to introduce Perth people the whole process of matcha making.

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Her first matcha demonstration was held on 26th of March this year at T2 in Claremont Quarter, and she served 32 bowls of matcha to guests.  Her demonstration brought more people into the store, and now she is having other matcha demonstrations across Perth.  Her schedule is listed below;

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03/May/2015      Hinata Cafe in Bibra Lake @ 10:00AM~4:00PM
07/May/2015      T2 in Claremont Quarter shopping centre @ 3:00PM
16/May/2015      Green Tea House in Subiaco @ 2:00PM

She is also receiving some offers from high schools and university for demonstration.

If you have interest in sadou  (茶道) – Japanese tea ceremony -, please contact her.  She runs classes on occasional bases in Perth (which I’d like to join in future).
eiko2525hiyuli<at>gmail.com

 


Hinata Cafe 2015

Posted April 14th, 2015 in Japan, Perth WA | No Comments »

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There will be another great Japanese event happening in just few weeks!

This Hinata Cafe, 5th time in Perth, will open at the same location as past years – in Bibra Lake.  This is an unique event as the concept of this event is a “temporary open cafe space to exhibit original craft and art, share experience of self expression”.    There will be Japanese artists selling their gorgeous hand-made works,  as well as food & drink stalls and live music by local and Japanese musicians.  If you love going to flea markets, love wondering your Sunday with some live music, or are looking to get some original hand-made items, you’ll love this one!

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I’ve only been to this Hinata Cafe once (they didn’t do last year), and I know there will be this artist Naoko Yamada who paints beautiful arts.  I’m hoping to find a nice painting of her as well as something pretty for my house.

The event will be on;
 (Sunday) 3rd May 2015
10:00 – 16:00
Venue:
Perth Waldorf School
14 Gwilliam Drive, Bibra Lake
What’s on:
Exotic Japanese sweets and lunches
Creative exhibition of arts
Uniquely hand made items for mother’s day gift
Live music with many talented musicians!!
Parking:
Please DO NOT park on the main street as it will block the traffic.
There are lots of parking spaces by the lake.

Hinata Cafe Facebook page

Hinata Cafe blog


Bug Eaters?

Posted March 27th, 2015 in Ume's Thought | 2 Comments »

It was about 2 weeks after my son started going to kindy that I found out there is a backpack filled with books and toys to borrow from local library (part of Better Beginnings service) to encourage kids to participate in reading books.  I went to local library and borrowed this Discovery Backpack, and found some books & toys inside.  The theme was “insects”, and one of the books was The Very Hungry Caterpillar and a toy was a caterpillar which can be turned into a butterfly.  I thought it’s a very good service for kids.  My son Hiro started talking about these small creatures a lot and clearly he became a bug lover, thanks to these books.

Ask A Bug

Then, I was stunned… I was reading one of the books “Ask A Bug”, and spotted a page saying “In Japan, sushi is topped with insects”!!!!

OMG, this is not true….!!!!

My reaction was bit too eccentric, it’s just because I hate insects….

Sushi we eat in Japan is mostly seafood. Some are meat, egg and vegetables, but never insect.  Besides, I do not want to imagine sushi with insect on top.  It’s disgusting…!! I’m not against people in the world who eat insects, just that we do not eat insect sushi in Japan!

Anyway, I was shocked and talked to my friends who are also Japanese.  They were surprised, laughed, and some were furious.  These books should be educational, especially it was part of Better Beginnings program.  I don’t want children to think Japanese people eat insect sushi and my son to get buried.  So I contacted the publisher of the book to let them know my concern.

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As soon as I emailed them the story, they replied to me with apologies and told me that they’d investigate where the sources came from. The publisher was very nice and responded promptly, and it seemed that my story spread to their head office in UK very quickly.

I received an email from an editor in UK last night.  It also began with an apology, and said they’ve been consulting with the senior editor on the book.  They were informed  that actually there has been a relatively recent (since 2000) revival of the insect-eating traditions that actually stem from mountainous areas of Japan, and some restaurants in Tokyo serve insect-based dishes as a special offering….  OMG, and there were some links that show articles and photos of sushi with insects!  So Japanese people do eat insects!!!
(Here is the link if you want to see these images of insect sushi… but I warn you they looks gross!!!)

I was shocked, to be honest.  I’ve never seen such sushi (gross…) in Japan and can’t imagine eating them.  Well, I guess some people get appetite when they see insects..  I now know my own country better, haha.

I still think the wording on the book Ask A Bug was inappropriate.  The editor also said that it should have been something like
“In Japan, insect eating once happened in mountainous areas.”
I agree!!

I’m still going to talk to the library to eliminate this book from the library though, till reprints are issued with different wording.

 


What’s your thought?

Posted March 13th, 2015 in Perth WA | 5 Comments »

Yakisoba and Okonomiyaki

 

If you’ve been to Japan in matsuri (festive) season (most likely in summer), you know those stall food that add more excitement and energy to the atmosphere.  Yakisoba, takoyaki, okonomiyaki, kakigori, crape, grilled corn, just to name a few.   Here in Perth, I get to see some stalls that sell Japanese food at festivals (I saw Fumi’s Okonomiyaki & Yakisoba stall at  Chinese NY festival in Northbridge last month) but not so many kinds.

City of Melville is organising a Japanese festival, which is a charity based event, in October this year.  The details are yet to be confirmed, but there will be some stalls selling food and also Japanese goods for children.  I hear taiko performance will be played at the beginning of the festival, and they will show a Japanese movie “paper plane”.

It sounds exciting as I love matsuri!  I know it’s a charity based event and I can’t expect too much, but I hope to see some stalls selling Japanese stall food there.

Here is a question:  What do you want to see at this kind of Japanese festival?  Food? Activity?  I want to hear your thoughts so I can probably pass this to people who are organising this festival in Melville.

Thanks!


After Japanese Festival 2015

Posted March 9th, 2015 in Perth WA | 2 Comments »

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It was another hot day in Perth.  Perth Japan Festival was held last saturday in the city, and I’d say it was a huge success..!

The festival opened its door with taiko (drum) performance just before 1pm.  Our stall wasn’t really ready to sell items yet around 1pm as we were still waiting for some food to be delivered.  I was surprised to see so many people passing by, and asking if we were open.  There was a huge queue on our dango (mitarashi & sanshoku) section which was amazing.

I was in a bread section with Melon-pan, Anpan and soybean pan.  Although I thought the pricing was bit too high, customer kept coming and we sold all our items out around 2pm!  I think the atmosphere of the festival helped selling these bread.  We wish we could prepared more food but it was our maximum… There’re total of around 400 bread.  I didn’t think it’d sell out in 1 hour.

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I wonder how much did these people at Takoyaki, Okonomiyaki and other food stalls prepare the ingredients to keep up till 8pm.  It must have been a massive amount..

I found that there’re more Australians and other Asian customers compared to Japanese customers.  I think the locati on of this event is bit too small – you can’t really walk around especially with strollers.  And, I thought there should be more stalls selling variety of food… including sweets.

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Anyway, after that crazy 1 hour, I was free and joined my sons to enjoy kakigori, wataame and takoyaki.

I love matsuri.  There will be another Japanese festival in Melville in October.  I’m looking forward to it.


Cabbage-Yaki

Posted February 24th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

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I had a cabbage.  A cabbage sitting in the fridge.  And I was thinking again “what to cook tonight…”

Since I had another baby, cooking time for dinner has been a stressful time for me.  Especially a 8-month-old doesn’t stay still and I literally can’t take my eyes off him.  He eats sandals, picks a thin tiny hair from the floor and put in his mouth, and tries to stand up but ends up unsuccessful and bump on his head…  A nearly-4-year-old, on the other hand, keeps telling me “I’m hungry~ I’m hungry~.”  I tell him “I’m cooking dinner, wait for a bit” but he insists to have some snack while waiting.  Snack would spoil his appetite, but most of the time I just give him something so I can prepare dinner.  It seems that I don’t have proper time to cook decent food these days.  I can’t stay in the kitchen for too long while 2 boys are in the house.

I’m trying to figure out what would be the best solution for this.  What other mums do?  I hear some only cook once a week, and heat up the dinner each day.  Would that be a great idea?  I’m finding hard to find a time to do grocery shopping as well.  I think I need to think about the routine and schedule ahead the menu of the week .

Anyway, one day I had a cabbage in the fridge and I thought I should cook this before it goes bad.  It’s taking a big space out of fridge too.  I decided to make something, maybe okonomiyaki – all these events in the city are making me feel like munching on some Japanese street food.  But on that day I even thought making okonomiyaki dough with flour would be too much trouble.  I was very lazy.  So I did skip that part and made this …. cabbage-yaki!

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Messy photo – sorry I had already started eating this.

Looks like okonomiyaki.  It tastes like one too!  But I basically used just cabbage, prawn, red ginger (which is a key ingredient to resemble okonomiyaki) and egg.  I skipped the flour.  Adding the sauce and Japanese mayonnaise gave it the similar taste to okonomiyaki, and it was super quick to make.  It’s basically an omelet with sauce!

 

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Cabbage-yaki  (makes 1)

  • cabbage, shredded or chopped ..  1 cup
  • prawn, peeled and tailed .. 2~3
  • grated/minced ginger .. 1/2 teaspoon
  • red ginger .. 1 teaspoon
  • egg .. 1
  • tomato sauce .. 2 tablespoons
  • oyster sauce .. 2 tablespoons
  • Japanese mayonnaise  to dress

 

  1. Heat a frying pan and spray oil on to the pan.  Cook prawn and ginger until the prawn turns pink.  Add cabbage, and sauté until it becomes soft.
  2. Add ginger, stir.  Beat an egg in a bowl, and pour over the pan evenly.  Once the bottom is set, flip over and cook another side.
  3. Serve on a plate.  Mix tomato sauce & oyster sauce, and cover the omelet. Dress with Japanese mayonnaise.  Serve immediately.

 

A super quick snack/supper is served.


An eventful day

Posted February 22nd, 2015 in Perth WA | No Comments »

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Happy Chinese NY~~

This year, my birthday happened to be in Chinese NY week, and it’s been eventful days watching dragon & lion dances, many red dresses around, and munching on yummy food.

Today I went to Northbridge just to get my birthday chocolate treat at San Churro, and ended up staying for the Chinese NY festival on James street from noon till 8pm! (had a break at home for 4hours in between though)

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There’r many stalls, including Takoyaki stall and Okonomiyaki/Yakisoba stalls as well!

I wonder Japanese festival on 7th will be a huge success too… hopefully it does!


Perth Japan Festival 2015

Posted February 17th, 2015 in Bagelier Bagel, Japan, Perth WA | No Comments »

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SAT 07 MARCH 2015

13:00PM – 20:00PM

FORREST PLACE, PERTH CBD

Perth Japan Festival is coming up!
For those who don’t know about this event, this matsuri is a free event with lots of fun for kids and families as well as adults.  I was there last year, and I was surprised to see the crowd.  It’s at the Forrest Place in CBD and I guess people couldn’t just pass all those stalls and shows.

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There will be lots of demonstrations including taiko, ikebana and udon making, as well as many Japanese food such as ramen, tako-yaki, kaki-gori (shaved ice with syrup), dango and more to eat at the festival.  AND!  I will be there as well selling my bagels 🙂

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Yes.  I know bagel is not Japanese food.  But I got an offer from my friend and I’ll be selling Green Tea bagels (Green Tea Anko, Green Tea Cream Cheese, Milky Green Tea) from 13pm!

It’s a shame that I can’t be enjoying the festival with my kids, but hopefully I sell out the bagels quick and join the fun.

Perth Japan Festival website

 


Getting back to business

Posted February 6th, 2015 in Bagelier Bagel | No Comments »

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It’s been a long time since I last baked bagels for Bagelier.  I took a long break as I was having another baby and also moving to a new place.  It’s been super busy and is still now, but I thought it’s about time to getting back to my small business.

I was expecting this but I’m amazed how 2 little boys make house so messy and everyday seem to fly so quickly.  I remember I had more time before and baked cakes and bread often, but now I just can’t find time to do it.  I’m not sure if I can even spare some time for myself to do bagels, but I hope I will!

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As always, my priority will by looking after 2 boys and I want the home business to be my second job (I will work hard for it though).  Hiro started going to kindy this week, so I’m hoping to have more time (even just to sit down when I eat).

I’m doing Bagelier only on occasional bases now, and will not be doing wholesale anymore.  When I was supplying my bagels to 6 cafes I was too busy to focus on baby Hiro.  Almost every morning I had to take him from his bed to the car to deliver bagels, and he had to spend lots of time in the car sitting.  I feel so sorry for him and I don’t think I can do it again, at least for now.

I will update details of my next Open Day on Facebook page  and on my website http://bagelier.com.

 


Meet at Our Table

Posted January 19th, 2015 in Eat out in Perth | No Comments »

Our Table

I had a playdate with my girl friend and her baby last weekend.  It had been awhile to be alone with my baby since my eldest son stopped going to daycare, so it was a nice day out to be with and focus my attention to a 7 months old.  My friend picked this place “Our Table” in Bedford to be our lunch place.  I had never been to nor heard this place before, but googling gave me some positive impressions.

When I arrived to the address, all I could see was big road and just a few shops on the side.  I checked the address couple of times to make sure I was in the right place.  Am I going to have lunch here??  I wondered as I headed to the shop with a sign board “Our Table”.

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As soon as I stepped inside the place, I was blown away.  …. I LOVE the decor!  Beautiful floor, chairs & tables, lightings, wall clock, display shelves….  everything is to my taste.   I did not expect this from outside the building!!

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Beautiful.

There was a playpen next to our table, so I put my son inside there after he woke up.

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The owner chef is Italian, and the menu had a good variety of food.  I ordered Prawn & Calamari Linguini and latte, and my friend ordered Chicken & Mushroom Penne and iced coffee.  The food was nice, and the staff were really friendly.

 

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After meal, we had creme brûlée to share.  Oh boy, it was great.  I thought the sugar coating was little bit too much caramelized (tasted bit bitter itself) but it actually matched with the sweetness of the pudding.

With their atmosphere, interior decor and friendliness of the staff, I will definitely come back here again!

Our Table
180a Grand Promenade Bedford, WA 6052
08 6162 6620
Open 7 days, 8:00am-9:30pm
menu
website  (still under construction)

 


Nikomi Hamburg Steak

Posted January 15th, 2015 in Food | No Comments »

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One of my son’s book shows typical Japanese food for kids such as curry & rice, omu-rice and spaghetti Napolitan, and it made me want to eat hamburg steak tonight!  Hamburg is one of typical kids meal in Japan.  Most family restaurants in Japan have hamburg steaks on their menu, and there are restaurants specialising hamburg steak (e.g. Bikkuri Donki) too.  There are few different types of hamburg steak, like melted cheese hamburg steak, curry hamburg steak, wafu (Japanese style) hamburg steak, etc.  Yummo!

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I decided to make nikomi hamburg steak with fried egg.  Nikomi means “stew” or “simmered”, but the cooking method is more like “braised”.  The hamburg steak is first seared, then cooked in the sauce.

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Hamburg steak covered in thick shiny sauce… I recommend to serve this with steamed rice but it also goes well with your choice of bread. 🙂

Here is the recipe:

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serves 4

  • Pork mince .. 360g
  • Onion .. 1
  • Egg .. 1
  • Breadcrumb .. 1/4 cup
  • Milk .. 1/4 cup
  • Tomato sauce … 4 tablespoons
  • Sugar … 4 tablespoons
  • Soy Sauce … 1 tablespoon
  • Vegetable stock cube*  .. 2
  • Water .. 500ml
  • Cornflour .. 3 teaspoons + Water 2 tablespoons

* I use MASSEL salt reduced Bouillon stock cubes

 

  1. Chop up onion finely.  Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a frying pan, and sauté the onion until it becomes transparent.  Transfer the onion to a plate or tray to cool.
  2. Mix breadcrumbs and milk.  Set aside.
  3. In a bowl, mix mince, onion, breadcrumbs+milk, egg, salt and pepper very well until the mixture becomes sticky.
  4. Divide the mixture into 4.  Shape them into flat ovals.
  5. Heat 1 table spoon of oil in a deep pan (wide enough to place all 4 patties), and sear the patties both side.  Absorb any extra oil with kitchen paper if required.
  6. Add water, sugar, and stock cubes.  Bring to boil, then reduce the heat to medium to simmer.
  7. Add tomato sauce and soy sauce. Simmer for 5 minutes.
  8. Mix cornflour + water.  Turn up the heat, and pour the conrflour mixture into the sauce. Stir lightly, then simmer for another 2 minutes.

 

Fried eggs, baked potatoes and vegetables are optional.  Serve with steamed rice or your choice of bread.

 

 

 

 


Hayao Miyazaki Family Movies

Posted January 3rd, 2015 in Ume's Interests | No Comments »

Ghibli

 

There was a series of Studio Ghibli movies on SBS2 for 5 nights (apparently tonight was the last one!! sigh) – My Neighbour Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, and Ponyo.  On their website, it shows that the current top movie people have voted as their favorite is Howl’s Moving Castle (32%) followed by Spirited Away (31%), My Neighbour Totoro (22%) and Ponyo & Kiki’s Delivery Service (both 6%).

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As you know there are many other Ghibli movies including Castle in the Sky, Princess Mononoke, The Cat Returns etc.  What’s your favourite? I’m surprised that Howl’s Moving Castle was voted more than Ponyo and Kiki’s Delivery Service.  It’s, of course, people’s choice, but to me Kiki’s Delivery Service is one of my favourite.  I love My Neighbour Totoro, Princess Mononoke (I went to a cinema to watch that!), and Grave of Fireflies.  My son loves My Neighbour Totoro and Spirited Away.  I thought Spirited Away is far more difficult for a 3-year-old to understand, but he seems to enjoy the whole story.

Apparently, the top Ghibli movie (which made most profit) is…
Spirited Away!
Followed by…
Howl’s Moving Castle
Princes Mononoke
Ponyo
The Wind Rises
The Secret World of Arrietty (I don’t know this)
Tales from Earthsea
The Cat Returns
Porco Rosso
Pom Poko
From Up on Poppy Hill (I don’t know this)
Kiki’s Delivery Service
Only Yesterday
Whisper of the Heart
The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (I don’t know this)
My Neighbours the Yamada
Nausicca of the Valley of the Wind
My Neighbour Totoro
Castle in the Sky
(ref: matome.naver.jp)

Have you watched all of them???

I left Japan in 2003, so most of the movie after that year are not familiar with me.  (Hawl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo, The Wind Rises etc)  This ranking is based on the profit.  The newer ones seem to be in the top ranking (because people know Ghibli brand well) .  I’m sure Totoro, Nausicca and Laputa (Castle in the Sky) are some people’s top list!

I missed some Ghibli movies on SBS2…  I would love SBS (or any other channel) to show more Ghibli movies sometime!!


Hello 2015

Posted January 1st, 2015 in Ume's Thought | No Comments »

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HAPPY NEW YEAR~~~~!!!!

As always, it didn’t feel like New Year’s Eve yesterday to me as my “New Year” always (used to) involves snow and Japanese New Year’s songs playing across the city.  I wanted to do something “New Year” so I made kagami-mochi (a traditional Japanese New Year decoration) using my son’s Playdoh.  …. it’s too small! And it doesn’t look as nice!!  So my son helped me making real mochi instead.

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We have a toy mochi maker we bought from Japan couple years ago.  The machine is kept at the very back of kitchen cabinet and we haven’t used it for a long long time.  Yeah I think it’s about time for this toy to be out of the cabinet.

We made white mochi and green mochi.  My son helped me shaping mochi into balls and coating in kinako (soybean powder).  Very sticky!!

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We didn’t forget to make kagami-mochi to put near the entrance door.  It looks flat, but as long as they are real mochi (and hand-made!)

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Made some food to munch on New Year’s Day.

* * * * *

Today, New Year’s Day was a fine day in Perth.  Not too hot, not too cold.  I was going to just relax by eating  mochi today, but ended up going shopping.  Shops open on New Year’s Day… even Perth zoo was open!

My 2014 was a big year for me.  Wish 2015 to be a great one too.