Hello Japanese Food

Some days I wake up and the first thing that comes to my mind is what I’m going to have for dinner. Yes, this is called planning which comes from years of training in management.

So dinner it is and I settled on Japanese. The only trouble was that I was in a  “what I eat is what I cook kind of situation”.

I love Japanese food. And I mean really and not just to impress. But not long ago Japanese food was very alien to me. It was Sushi and Sashimi and no idea how to differentiate between the two. My lone encounter with wasabi which I mistook for green chutney was not very pleasant. Also in India where can you get to eat Sushi without either burning a hole in your pocket or risking food poisoning. But thank God that during my recent trip to Japan I got introduced to a whole range of Japanese food which is not only tasty and healthy but also not difficult to make.

So after careful thought of what to make I settled on miso soup, Japanese styled rice and stir fry veggies. Quite an easy and humble fare. Okhla mandi is near office and that’s where I buy all my fancy veggies at reasonable prices.  So planning done, veggies bought and then over some conversation with Deepa ( who kindly agreed to sample the food) and jasmine tea I went about the task of making Japanese food.

Miso is  the easiest, boil water, some veggie stock, a few vegetables and boil them. Now add Miso concentrate to it. But here is a word of advise from my friend Yuko. Miso doesn’t like to be boiled. So you turn off the gas and then add the miso concentrate to it. Add some sea weed, some Japanese soy sauce to taste and Miso soup is ready.

Stir Fry veggies are your simple stir fry veggies, But to give them a slight Japanese flavour I seasoned them with lots of sesame seeds. I had broccoli, pokchoy, mushrooms, onions, red and green peppers. Japanese food generally doesn’t have garlic but I anyways added it for taste. In hindsight I  think it was a mistake. The flavour of garlic was just too overpowering for the veggies.

And then came the Japanese style sticky rice. The trick here is to add the right amount of water. I cooked rice in a open pan and maintained a ratio of 1:1.25 to rice and water.

So a humble Japanese meal done in 45 minutes, ready to be enjoyed with Deepa. While serving  food I terribly missed the Japanese soup bowls and had to do with mugs. But such is life 🙂

The plate with chopstick is mine :).

And yes Deepa survived the food although she is going to let me know if farming of sea weed causes any harm to the environment and to the marine life in particular.

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