Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Cooking With Mamasans

Tonight I took my first Japanese cooking class. It was really fun. It started with a Japanese lady who works for the AF giving us an introduction to the ingredients and recipe that we will be trying. Tonight was cooking Hiyashi chuuka or Japanese cold noodles. Then the cooking began. all of a sudden there we three more older Japanese ladies whirling around the mini "Kitchen Stadium" chopping, pointing, shredding, etc. It lacked a traditional instruction, but once I got into the flow I was able to pick up on what ingredients were going where. What made it more confusing was that instead of cooking the scheduled recipe they made three additional dishes. It was wild.

Here is the cold noodle dish. It was really good, despite having forgotten to put the vinegar sauce on top.This one was my favorite, the hot noodle dish. It's basically a raman dish, but the best I've tasted, including the handful I've tried around Japan already.
The Japanese people are sooo nice. Everything is done with a smile and a bow. They like it when I try to say a phrase in Japanese. I want to be able to speak and read Japanese so bad.

The major victory tonight was getting introduced to a few of the Japanese cooking staples and how to go buy them. One favorite was the Shiso leaf. It had a wonderful aroma. Strong aroma like cilantro, but citrusy. It was placed in a rice dish, a potato/bean salad, and garnished the cold noodle dish. Now I need to brave Univers, the Japanese supermarket for some ingredients!

One of the other guys there summed it up perfectly: "all I've learned is I need three little Japanese ladies to come into my kitchen and cook for me."


FOX said...

So this was such a cool post, I forwarded it to Yuko, who will be so proud that you learned to make Ramen!!!

Can't wait until you make it for me!!!!

Sara Jensen said...

How fun! Post some of your favorite recipes. I'm glad things are going so well over there for you guys.

acte gratuit said...

I totally support any activity that involves my husband learning to cook better. How cool is he?