Kanako's Kitchen

Three Color Torisoboro Gohan: Minced Chicken and Garnish over Rice

Posted in main dish, Recipe, rice by Kanako Noda on January 16, 2011

Hello loyal readers! Sorry for disappearing but I’ve been really busy with my non-cooking life. I don’t want the blog to stay dormant forever, though, and my husband really wanted me to add this recipe for his new favorite way to eat chicken: minced!
When you think about it, it’s funny: ground beef and ground pork are common enough, but how often do you see ground chicken? Our local supermarket sure doesn’t sell it, so for this recipe, we mince it ourselves. It’s not the most pleasant of kitchen tasks, granted, but it’s not actually hard either…just chop some chicken thigh and breast meat into blocks and put it through a food processor. Takes a minute or two.

Torisoboro Gohan isn’t really a fancy dish, but it’s very flavorful and always seems to be a major hit when I’ve served it to Westerners. To make it really appealing, you want  to pair it with brightly colored garnishings – usually green beens and silk-thread eggs – aiming for a tri-color effect at the end.


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Vegetable Agebitashi: Marinated Deep Fried Vegetables

Posted in main dish, Recipe by Kanako Noda on July 8, 2010

It’s still hot in Montreal, so we’re still doing refreshing summer recipes. This one uses the same somen sauce we wrote about the other day – actually, we’re using leftovers here. This is one of the very few vegetarian dishes you’ll find in this blog. But don’t be fooled: a disturbing amount of oil goes into this dish, so Vegetable Agebitashi is more a hearty main dish than  a light side dish.

Agebitashi means fry (Age) and soak (Hitashi). So how do you make it? First you fry the vegetables, then you soak them in the sauce. That’s all! The kicker is that you serve it cold – very cold. It sounds strange, I know, but just trust me and give it a try. And be sure to serve this with simple white rice. They go very well together.

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Okra Aemono: Seasoned Boiled Okra

Posted in Recipe, side dish by Kanako Noda on February 22, 2010

How many words from the Igbo language of West Africa have made their way into both standard English and everyday Japanese? I bet Okra is the only one!

“Okra?! What’s that?” It’s a fair question. If you live in Europe, Latin America, the US North or Canada, you may have never seen this odd-looking plant. It has certainly spread unevenly around the globe: by now its fleshy pods are a staple in East Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, the American South and in Japan, but for some odd reason hardly used in China!

This recipe makes for a quick, very healthy and flavourful side dish.

It’s particularly tasty mixed together with natto (fermented soybeans) and served as a topping for white rice. But if like many people (including many Japanese) you are not a big fan of natto, you can serve Okra Aemono on its own over rice. Delish.

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Tempura

Posted in main dish, Recipe, today's meal by Kanako Noda on October 13, 2009

tempuraHistorians will tell you that tempura was introduced to Japan in the 16th century, by Portuguese traders. These days, nobody in Japan would dream of calling tempura foreign food, though: we think of it as quintessentially Japanese.

Deep fried bits of meat, shrimp or vegetables are not, of course, the first thing that pops into foreign people’s minds when they think of Japanese cooking. But tempura is a much loved treat throughout Japan: after all, even the healthiest diet should have some fried things in it once in a while!

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