japanesefood Newsletter

Japanese Food

March 13 2010 Japanese Food Newsletter

If you ever had the chance to stroll down the street of a Japanese town whether in Japan or elsewhere, you no doubt walked past food vendors cooking up everything sweet and savory. As a child, I loved to peer into shop windows to watch nimble hands flipping pastries.

One of my favorites is Taiyaki, fish-shaped sweet bread filled with red bean paste. I finally got my own taiyaki mold so I can make them at home. They come out looking perfect and cute. Not only did I fill mine with the traditional anko but also some truly American fillings like chocolate chips!

The mold can be found at Japanese food markets at a very reasonable price. Or, you can go online to shop. If you simply cannot wait to get your own taiyaki pan, make some dorayaki in the meantime. Dorayaki is another favorite pastry that is often in Japanese anime cartoons and movies. Dorayaki is made with anko filling sandwiched between two pancake-like discs. You need a good griddle to make dorayaki. It takes a little practice to achieve the right golden brown without burning them.

Here are the recipes:

Dorayaki Recipe
Sweet red bean paste-filled pancakes are beloved pastries in Japan. They are easy to make at home.

Taiyaki Fish-Shaped Pastry Recipe
Taiyaki is similar to dorayaki (red bean paste filled pancake pastries) but cooked in a fish-shaped mold. Street vendors do a brisk business selling these popular treats.


I already posted the an filling recipes last week, but here they are in case you missed them:

Tsubushi-an and Shiro-an Recipes
Although sold in cans, this common sweet filling is simple to make using dried beans and sugar.


Your Japanese food words of the week:
Gohan means rice and since rice is a requisite staple at each meal, the word gohan also means meal. (By the way, gohan is cooked rice or a meal. Kome (koh-meh) is uncooked rice.)

Hence, to refer to breakfast, lunch or dinner, you simply tack on the word gohan (meal) to the end of the words for morning, noon and evening:
Asa-gohan (ah-sah goh-ha-n) = breakfast (literally morning meal)
Hiru-gohan (hee-roo goh-ha-n) =lunch (noon meal)
Ban-gohan (bah-n- goh-ha-n) =dinner (evening meal)

asa-gohan breakfast
hiru-gohan lunch
ban-gohan dinner/supper

And in case you want to use your English to get by, here are more English words adopted into the Japanese language:

kohi (coffee)
furutsu (fruit)
chiizu (cheese)
biru (beer)
bata (butter)

And a parting thought:
Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value. (Albert Einstein)

Until next time,
Chidori Phillips
BellaOnline.com Japanese Food Editor

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