Hinata Gallery Cafe 2012

Posted July 29th, 2012 in Perth WA | 2 Comments »

There will be an exciting event for people who love hand-made craft, art, music, Japanese foods and culture in Bibra Lake.  This event, called “Hinata (sunny side) Gallery Cafe”, will be held on 8th of September 2012 at Perth Waldorf School, Bibra Lake.

There will be stalls selling hand-made crafts, arts, etc as well as Japanese foods and drinks.  I’ve never been to this event before, but apparently it’s held annually.  I hear all the things at this event are very well-made and good quality.  Above of all, nothing can beat the warmness of handmade things.

There will also be an opportunity to experience Japanese calligraphy, and listen to Japanese musician playing and watch Japanese film.

Cafe will open from 10:00 to 19:00, Craft/Workshop open from 10:00 to 16:00, Music Concert will start at 16:00 for 30 minutes, and Film will start from 16:30 until 18:30.  Yes, it’s a whole-day event!

So, write down the date “8th September 2012” on your diary and experience the whole culture and entertainment of Japanese artists!

Chocolate Cake

Posted July 20th, 2012 in Food | 1 Comment »

decorated Chocolate cake 🙂

Layers of cocoa sponge with freshly whipped chocolate cream and rich ganache, covered with whipped chocolate cream and topped with fruits and ganache balls.

I like making cake with lots of fresh fruits 🙂

Garnished mint leaves are from my garden.

Happy birthday 〜!!

Kayaku Gohan

Posted July 18th, 2012 in Food | 2 Comments »

As you may know, Japanese people eat lot of rice.  Nowadays they don’t eat as much as they used to, but rice is still a must-have food for most people there.

I was raised in a typical Japanese family who eat rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  My grand parents had rice fields (now my dad’s inherited them), so rice was always there in the kitchen.  Because of that, I also became a person who needs to eat rice everyday – at least once a day.  Otherwise my body doesn’t feel right.

Here in Perth, Japanese rice is so expensive.  They are available at Nippon Food and other Asian grocery shops, but I’ve only bought a discounted bag with broken packaging before.  I usually just use Sunrice medium grain rice.  It’s cheap and ok.  I sometimes mix mochi-gome (mochi rice = sticky rice) to the medium grain when cooking so that the rice becomes more like Japanese rice; sticks together. I like the mochi-mochi texture.

Kayaku-gohan is steamed rice with various ingredients and seasoning cooked together.  I must say it’s one of my favourite food.  I can go several bowls at once!

You can find abura-age (fried bean-curd) in freezer section at Asian grocery shops.  Konnyaku is usually in the fridge, or sometimes sold at room temperature on the shelves.

<Kayaku Gohan>

  • Rice medium grain 3 cups
  • Mochi Rice (sticky rice) 1/2 cup
  • Chicken Thigh 50g
  • Carrot, small 1
  • Konnyaku 1/2 pack
  • Abura-age 1/2 sheet
  • Shiitake mushroom, dried 2 〜3
  • Ginger 1 small block (about 10g)
  • Soy Sauce 2 tbs
  • Sake 1 tbs
  • Mirin 1 tbs

  1. Soak dried shiitake in 1/4 cup of water for 30 minutes.  Keep the shiitake water.
  2. Slice chicken, carrot, konnyaku, abura-age, shiitake, and ginger into small pieces.
  3. Place them in a sauce pan with the shiitake water, another 3/4 cup water (so 1 cup total), soy sauce, sake and mirin.   Bring to gentle simmer and cook for 10 minutes over low heat.  Leave to cool.
  4. Place washed and drained rice into a rice cooker.  Level the surface. Scoop the chicken and vegetables and place on top of rice – level surface – to cover the rice.  Add the stock from “3” to the rice cooker.
  5. Add more water to adjust : I always use my finger to measure the water amount when cooking rice.  Place your index finger 90° to the rice, and add water up till the first line on your index finger.
  6. Turn on the rice cooker.  When rice is cooked, leave at least 10 minutes before serving.


Baby Food Recipes

Posted July 15th, 2012 in Food, Ume and Baby | No Comments »

I’ve been writing this website My Baby Are What since Hiro started eating solid.  Before I fell pregnant I didn’t really have any interest in kids and babies –  I didn’t even like them much 🙁  But now everything changed including the way I see and feel about other babies and kids.  When I was a teenager some of my friends already had babies, but I really had no idea how to treat and talk to these little people when I visited.  Should I speak in a baby language, or should I just speak as I speak to adults?  How to play with babies?  What do I do?!  What I could do was just to keep staring at babies with a smile – and that made both babies and me tired and uncomfortable.

Now, I don’t say babies and kids are my top interest, but I like watching them play and know how to (try to) communicate with them. Thanks to Hiro. 🙂

Hiro loves eating.  He wants to eat all the time.  Because he asks for food so often, I had to consult with community nurse about it.  He is not fat, but I’m afraid he’ll be like a giant pig if he continue eating like this.    But, his attitude towards food makes me feel it worths to cook for him every day.


Now, I’ve stopped writing on MyBabyAteWhat and am combining it with this Umeboss.  I will post recipes of baby’s food with more photos here.

It may take a while till I upload all the recipes because I can’t be in front of computer so often, but once I do I hope you enjoy reading them!



Birthday Cakes

Posted July 8th, 2012 in Food | 8 Comments »

It’s been a little busy week for me – making birthday cakes 🙂

For birthday cake, I always make the same one; sponge with freshly whipped cream and lots of fresh fruits.  That’s my favourite cake in Japan, and people who ask me to make cakes seem to be the same.

Strawberries are getting cheap here as spring approaches.  I love the combination of strawberries and cream!

This is the another one I made last week.  Pink-themed cake 🙂

I mixed strawberry jam and fresh strawberries to the cream when I whipped.  It tasted fantastic and sweet so I didn’t need to add sugar to it.

Yum yum…..  I made extra for myself, and that’s a real treat for my tired body and brain 😀

Hijiki Nimono

Posted July 1st, 2012 in Food | 2 Comments »

This is a very classic Japanese dish; hijiki-no-nimono (stewed hijiki with vegetables and fried bean-curd)  which is often used to fill bento box as well.  Hijiki is a type of seaweed and is good for skin and hair – very healthy!  Unfortunately hijiki is not available at stores in Perth because of Australian import laws, so you will have to bring it from Japan by yourself (import non-commercially is currently allowed).  If you have a friend who is flying to Japan then you can ask him/her 🙂

Hijiki-no-nimono can have any ingredients – but I usually cook with carrot, konnyaku, aburaage (fried bean-curd), chicken thigh and chikuwa (fish-cake).  You can also add soy beans or/and snake beans.  Since I didn’t have chikuwa in my fridge, I cooked without it.

You can find abura-age and chikuwa in freezer section at Asian grocery shop.  Konnyaku is usually in the fridge, or sometimes sold at room temperature on the shelves.

It’s a great accompaniment to steamed rice 🙂

Here is the recipe :


  • Dried Hijiki 17g
  • Chicken Thigh 50g (no bone. with or without skin)
  • Carrot 1 (medium)
  • Konnyaku (black) about 90g (I used 1/2 of normal packet)
  • Aburage 1/2 sheet
  • Soy Sauce 1 tbs
  • Sake (cooking wine) 1 tbs
  • Mirin (sweet cooking wine) 1 tbs
  • Dashi Powder 1 pinch


  1. Soak dried hijiki in cold water for at least 30 minutes.  Drain.
  2. Cut chicken into small pieces.  Slice carrot, konnyaku and abura-age.
  3. Place all the ingredients in a pot.  Turn on the fire and bring to gentle boil.  Turn down the heat and simmer with lid on for about 10 minutes.
  4. Serve with steamed rice 🙂