Saturday, June 4, 2016
Tea houses and coffee shops all over Japan serve this traditional sweet snack. A similar dessert is served at Chinese restaurants. Small cubes of translucent kanten are served with sugar syrup and a few pieces of canned fruit. Deluxe versions also add a scoop of anko (bean paste) and for super deluxe, vanilla ice cream cover with some matcha syrup. The visual effect is colorful and festive, and the taste is refreshing and not as heavy as a western sundae.
1 stick kanten
2 ¼ cups water
2 tbsp sugar
1 cup sugar
2 cups water
1 small can of fruit cocktail
Anko (sweet bean paste)
Green tea or vanilla ice cream
1 cup bean paste
(1) Tear the kanten into pieces and soak in water for several hours. Wash the softened kanten in running water and place in 2 ¼ cups water in a heavy saucepan. Bring the heat up slowly, but do not stir the kanten until it is fully dissolved. Continue simmering, stiring frequently while removing foam from the surface, until the mixture is reduced by 10%. Add the sugar and stir. Remove from the heat, strain and pour into an 8-inch square baking pan. Cool in the pan & then refrigerate, covered, overnight.
(2) Make the syrup. Dissolve the sugar in the water in a medium saucepan over high heat until it is dissolved. Remove from the heat, let it cool and chill.
(3) Cut the cooled kanten into ½ inch cubes. Divide among 6 serving dishes. Drain the fruit salad, reserving some of the syrup and add some of it to the sugar syrup, if desired. Top the kanten cubes with the fruit and sugar syrup. Add one small scoop each of the anko and ice cream and small balls of mochi (rice cakes), if desired.
94) Serves 6
Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Japanese cultures have evolved greatly over time with influences from all over the world. The culture is not only about dedicated cultural members practicing traditions, but it brings some amazing food to the table. What does this mean? It means that you can experience the lifestyle of Japan without even having to be in Japan. Below are some fun facts about sushi and Japanese food to teach you some more whilst on your journey of exploration.
Like a samurai, the blade of a professional sushi chef's knives must be re-sharpened every day. This is especially important when working with sashimi - raw, thinly sliced fish.
Traditionally, a sushi chef or itamae trains for 10 years before serving this Japanese food in a restaurant.
When exploring the menu of exotic Japanese food, remember that you eat miso soup at the beginning of a meal, not the end, as it's good for digestion.
Why does sushi always look so delicious? Sushi masters believe that you don't just eat with your mouth, but also with your eyes. Even sashimi is served fanned out in a mouth-watering display.
Making sushi rice is considered an art by sushi chefs. This Japanese food is cooked perfectly when it is slightly sticky to the touch.
The first International Sushi Day was 18 June 2009, a celebration of this world-wide phenomenon of Japanese food. Get your chopsticks ready!
Sashimi is always the best cut of meat, and should preferably be eaten without wasabi, and using your chopsticks. Sashimi is not always fish; it can also be raw beef or lightly cooked octopus.
The Japanese often eat sashimi as the first course and then move onto sushi.
Japanese food is not limited to sushi and sashimi; other tasty options on a traditional Japanese food menu include teppanyaki, tempura and chicken teriyaki.
Sushi lovers looking for something new? A rare delicacy indeed is sashimi made from the deadly puffer fish, called fugu sashi.
Almost 80% of all the bluefin tuna caught in the world is used for sushi and sashimi.
As sashimi needs to be as rich as possible, some sushi chefs even keep the fish alive in water before it is served.
In Japanese food terminology, the word "sushi' actually refers to vinegar rice, and not fish, while the word "sashimi" means pierced flesh.
Maki rolls are a work of art. Forget the standard 'Californian roll' found at any cheap sushi outlet in the West. The ingredients for maki-zushi -- sushi rolls -- are chosen by masters so that taste, texture, and even colors complement each other. Rolls are served already sliced into disks so that customers can see the artistic work inside.