Author Topic: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general east asian) food blog?  (Read 2315 times)

shelivesthedream

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4473
  • Location: London, UK
My husband and I have been getting into Japanese cooking bit by bit over the past few years, and we've finally decided to splash out on a set of special tableware (rice bowls, chopsticks rests, etc) as a Christmas present to ourselves. However, this obviously represents a commitment to a higher frequency of Asian dinners than we've been having so far and I want to make sure this isn't just a flash in the pan. As Mustachians are generally keen on home cooking, I thought I'd ask if any of y'all can recommend a good food blog to help us make the most of our new tableware. Something aimed at Western cooks who have a serious interest in Asian food would be ideal.

Criteria:
- No really specific appliances or cookware required. We have a small kitchen and really don't want to buy anything else.
- Esoteric ingredients are fine as we live just round the corner from an Asian grocery shop
- We're mostly vegetarian, so nothing too heavy on the meat
- Generally the kind of recipes that you could cook for a weeknight dinner. We both work from home most of the time, so we're 'around', and my husband does enjoy cooking, but we don't want hours of hands-on time.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2016, 01:23:09 AM by shelivesthedream »

SeaEhm

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 448
  • The Guilt is Real
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2016, 09:15:18 AM »

I love this egg plant recipe
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/201964/eggplant-with-garlic-sauce/

tomato egg
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/stir-fried-egg-and-tomato-352835

Get this box, throw in veggies of your choice (and tofu if you like it) Then serve it over rice.  Very easy and delicious


A lot of the other meals I know are heavy on the meat or the broth is meat broth.

(also Oriental is a pretty old fashioned term used to describe antiques not cultures)
« Last Edit: November 26, 2016, 09:18:14 AM by SeaEhm »

shelivesthedream

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4473
  • Location: London, UK
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2016, 10:13:15 AM »

I love this egg plant recipe
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/201964/eggplant-with-garlic-sauce/

tomato egg
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/stir-fried-egg-and-tomato-352835

Get this box, throw in veggies of your choice (and tofu if you like it) Then serve it over rice.  Very easy and delicious
[img

A lot of the other meals I know are heavy on the meat or the broth is meat broth.

Hi, not really what I was looking for but thanks for playing.

(also Oriental is a pretty old fashioned term used to describe antiques not cultures)

I'm British. Maybe it's different over here? I only say "Asian" to refer to China/Japan/Korea/etc because I read so much American internet and know most of the MMM community are American, so I try to be linguistically accommodating. (Like, when I said "Asian grocery store", what I would have said to another Brit is "Oriental food shop" - or, more realistically in this specific instance, "Chinese food shop" because it is in fact run by Chinese people and has as associated Chinese restaurant, despite selling foods from many Oriental countries.) To me, "Asian" could mean food from India/Pakistan/Bangladesh/etc (and let's not forget that the continent of Asia includes Russia!), whereas I am interested in recipes for food from the "far east" (for lack of a better term springing to mind). I don't know, maybe I'm wrong, but to me 'Oriental' is a current term used to refer to a group of geographically proximate and gastronomically linked countries in the east of Asia.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2016, 10:27:24 AM by shelivesthedream »

peace

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 14
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2016, 12:37:13 PM »
This is a blog I've used in the past:

http://www.justhungry.com

The blogger isn't updating it anymore (she's had health problems, but she does seem to post to facebook). There are, however about 10 years worth of archived recipes, including a short course in Japanese basics. Here's a list of the Japanese recipes:

http://www.justhungry.com/recipes/japanese

She also has a site with bento recipes, many of which are Japanese:

http://justbento.com

redbird

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 528
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2016, 12:45:21 PM »
I'll second JustHungry. I've made several of her recipes and they're all great. If you don't mind videos, I also recommend Cooking with Dog (a Japanese woman who cooks while her dog "narrates" in English and sits in the background) on YouTube. The ingredient list and amounts is in the description of the video so you don't have to watch it to see what you need to buy. Unfortunately her dog, Francis, recently (within the past week if I remember) passed away. I don't know what they plan to do with the channel in the future.

https://www.youtube.com/user/cookingwithdog/videos

remizidae

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 190
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2016, 12:56:11 PM »
I don't know if you're going to find a generic Asian cooking blog, since the different cuisines are so different. I have a stock of ingredients/dishes/techniques for Indian food, and a similar stock for Korean food, but there's not a lot of overlap. So I suggest you pick whatever country's cuisine you're most interested in and focus on that. Maangchi is good for Korean, and she often suggests vegetarian alternatives. It sounds like you're not interested in Indian, which is too bad, since that's probably the easiest Asian cuisine to make vegetarian.

Also, Oriental" is pretty offensive in American English. We would say "Asian" for the whole continent, or "East Asian" for China/Japan/Korea and "Southeast Asian" for the India/Pakistan/Bangladesh area. Not trying to criticize, just FYI.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=112465167

Dicey

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9742
  • Age: 61
  • Location: NorCal
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2016, 01:44:27 PM »
Yup, since the primary readership is in the US, and it's been mentioned nicely twice, I'd strongly advise you to change your thread title. At the very least, you have failed to capitalize the out-of-favor word. As long as you're correcting that, a few more keystrokes will put you on much safer ground. BTW, it is fairly well understood that Asian cooking and Russian cooking are two different things. Mostly.

Reminds me of this gem: Knowledge is knowing that a tomato(e) is a fruit. Wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad.

Also, I volunteer at my library's book sales. Actual cookbooks are losing ground to the Internet. We always have a good assortment of Asian Cookbooks donated. So, change your title (please), then plan on attending your library's next book sale, where a treasure trove awaits, for pennies on the dollar.

Moonwaves

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1082
  • Location: Germany
    • My blog
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2016, 02:06:41 PM »
Don't have any blogs to recommend but just in case you're interested in trying to make gyoza sometime, a Japanese woman in my old choir did a gyoza evening with us once and sent us the recipes afterwards. I translated them for my sister (they were in German) and just found the email recently. So, here you go. They are made using meat but I'd say you could substitute easily enough to make them vegetarian. I love these, even if I haven't gotten around to making them myself.

Filling for gyoza:
100g Mince (pork or mixed pork and beef)
1 bunch chives or scallions
3 leaves of a Chinese or sweetheart/pointed cabbage (if you use Chinese cabbage the mix can get quite wet. In that case, add a small amount of flour)
1 thumbsize piece of ginger (about 20g)
1 clove garlic
1 dessert spoon soy sauce
1 dessert spoon sake
1 dessert spoon sesame oil
Salt
Pepper

Chop chives/scallions, cabbage, ginger and garlic finely. Add mince and mix with your hands. Add everything else and mix well for five minutes (I swear that's what she wrote - she might have meant mix it well and leave for at least five minutes I suppose).

Then you use a teaspoon of the mixture for each wrapper - don't have a recipe for them, you just buy them in the frozen section of Asian supermarkets, called "gyoza no kawa". They're made of a kind of rice paper. The recipe is enough for about 20-25 wrappers, which is usually the amount in a packet. If you're not sure of how to make them up, check youtube, I'm sure there are loads of videos.

Heat some oil (sesame, rapeseed or sunflower) in a pan and fry the dumplings for about three minutes. Then add about half a cup of water and cover - steam until the water is almost gone (about five minutes). Remove the lid and let the rest of the water evaporate. Add a little more sesame oil and fry until the underside of the dumplings is golden brown.

Basic sauce for gyoza:
Mix soy sauce with rice vinegar and a few drops of chilli sesame oil.

Sesame sauce for gyoza:
1 thumbsize piece of ginger
2 dessert spoons each of tahini, sugar, rice vinegar and soy sauce
1 dessert spoon each of chilli sesame oil and ordinary sesame oil
Grate ginger and mix well with tahini and sugar. Add everything else and mix well.

Soy sauce mix for gyoza:
Half a scallion
1 thumbsize piece of ginger
2 cloves garlic
1 cup soy sauce
Half a cup of mirin (type of rice wine)
1 dessert spoon sake
1 dessert spoon sesame oil
Pinch of chilli powder
Salt and pepper
Chop scallion very finely, grate ginger and garlic. Add all the ingredients to a bottle and shake very well.

Doubleh

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 274
  • Location: London
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2016, 02:49:14 PM »
Can I respectfully ask that people cut the OP some slack here? I think it's fair to point out that using the word oriental can be misinterpreted by a US based readership and it might be a reasonable idea to change the threat title. But - and I may be over interpreting here - some of the comments read with a degree of contempt and the assumption that anyone who uses that word must be racist.

This may well be a fair assumption in the USA but certainly isn't here in the UK where it is an unloaded term to refer to the far east. For example there are many good shops with Oriental Store on their sign, the word simply does not have the connotations here that our does in USA. Asian is generally assumed to refer to the peoples and cultures of the Indian subcontinent - and you would cause great offence by referring to someone of Pakistani or Bangladeshi heritage as Indian.

Don't get me wrong I do think it's reasonable to respect the US dominated readership and respect the relevant cultural sensibilities. But equally it would behove you guys to recognise that this is an internationally followed site and that not everyone has the same cultural references. Same way my US born wife was completely thrown by the realisation  that you can't refer to a Nigerian born guy living in London as African American.

On topic, I know OP mentioned being mainly vegetarian but if you'd eat chicken, when i lived in Tokyo my absolute favourite comfort food was the poetically names oyakodon - literally mother and child rice. This is the best recipe I've come across

 http://kitchenmonkey.blogspot.co.uk/2005/03/oyakodon-japanese-comfort-food-recipe.html?m=1

lhamo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9288
  • Location: Seattle
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2016, 02:55:18 PM »
Japan is one of the areas they don't have posts on, but for great stuff on Asian food/travel I love Eating Asia:

http://eatingasia.typepad.com/

They have a book coming out on Turkey soon.

Dicey

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9742
  • Age: 61
  • Location: NorCal
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2016, 03:35:42 PM »
Can I respectfully ask that people cut the OP some slack here? I think it's fair to point out that using the word oriental can be misinterpreted by a US based readership and it might be a reasonable idea to change the threat title. But - and I may be over interpreting here - some of the comments read with a degree of contempt and the assumption that anyone who uses that word must be racist.

This may well be a fair assumption in the USA but certainly isn't here in the UK where it is an unloaded term to refer to the far east. For example there are many good shops with Oriental Store on their sign, the word simply does not have the connotations here that our does in USA. Asian is generally assumed to refer to the peoples and cultures of the Indian subcontinent - and you would cause great offence by referring to someone of Pakistani or Bangladeshi heritage as Indian.

Don't get me wrong I do think it's reasonable to respect the US dominated readership and respect the relevant cultural sensibilities. But equally it would behove you guys to recognise that this is an internationally followed site and that not everyone has the same cultural references. Same way my US born wife was completely thrown by the realisation  that you can't refer to a Nigerian born guy living in London as African American.
Nope, sorry can't do it, though I hope you did not consider my earlier request contemptuous or bearing racist implications.

A slur is a slur, intended or not. We don't call people with mental retardation "retards" any more do we? Though both were once medically and socially acceptable terms. Disney cringes over "Song of the South". One of my favorite books as a kid was "Little Black Sambo", because I loved the image of tigers spinning themselves into butter. The restaurant formerly known as "Sambo's", a combination of the two owner's names, who used illustrations from the book in their decor was unfairly castigated for being racist because to some it sounded that way. The list goes on and on.

If I had inadvertently slipped into a cultural uh-oh on an international blog, I wouldn't dare stand on it and insist that it was not a slur in my own country. I hope SLTD will come back and change it, please, and then let's move on so we can add some more yummy recipes to our repertoire.

nnls

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1156
  • Location: Perth, AU
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general oriental) food blog?
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2016, 05:21:09 PM »
Hi

I have tried a few of the recipies from http://www.sbs.com.au/food/recipes/collections/Classic-Asian they also have a "modern Asian" section as well http://www.sbs.com.au/food/cuisine/modern-asian you can drill down further to Japanese http://www.sbs.com.au/food/cuisine/japanese or which ever country you feel like. I personally havent done any Japanese recipes but have done a few Thai and Malaysian plus a variety from other non Asian countries as well and have found most to be good

It is an Australian website so I dont know if that's an issue for measurements ect, as from memory the UK still used imperial system but I could be wrong

This is another website I have used, again not for Japanese specifically but it may be of some help https://asianinspirations.com.au/cuisine/japanese/


shelivesthedream

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4473
  • Location: London, UK
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general east asian) food blog?
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2016, 01:39:51 AM »
Can I respectfully ask that people cut the OP some slack here? I think it's fair to point out that using the word oriental can be misinterpreted by a US based readership and it might be a reasonable idea to change the threat title. But - and I may be over interpreting here - some of the comments read with a degree of contempt and the assumption that anyone who uses that word must be racist.

This may well be a fair assumption in the USA but certainly isn't here in the UK where it is an unloaded term to refer to the far east. For example there are many good shops with Oriental Store on their sign, the word simply does not have the connotations here that our does in USA. Asian is generally assumed to refer to the peoples and cultures of the Indian subcontinent - and you would cause great offence by referring to someone of Pakistani or Bangladeshi heritage as Indian.

Don't get me wrong I do think it's reasonable to respect the US dominated readership and respect the relevant cultural sensibilities. But equally it would behove you guys to recognise that this is an internationally followed site and that not everyone has the same cultural references. Same way my US born wife was completely thrown by the realisation  that you can't refer to a Nigerian born guy living in London as African American.
Nope, sorry can't do it, though I hope you did not consider my earlier request contemptuous or bearing racist implications.

A slur is a slur, intended or not.
...
If I had inadvertently slipped into a cultural uh-oh on an international blog, I wouldn't dare stand on it and insist that it was not a slur in my own country. I hope SLTD will come back and change it, please, and then let's move on so we can add some more yummy recipes to our repertoire.

I have changed the thread title, since it obviously is causing offence to the majority of the MMM readership, but I would like to respectfully ask that you do cut me some slack. As far as I am aware, "oriental" has zero racist connotations in the UK. Obviously it can be used in racist sentences, but the actual word itself is regarded as factual. The Chinese food shop in question does indeed have "Oriental Food Store" written on its sign.

Personally the term "African American" gives me the heebie jeebies - I would never ever call anyone "African-British". That seems extremely presumptuous to me - borderline offensive, even. But I know that it is a standard term in America. As I said, I'm happy to change the thread title as I hadn't realised that it's such an offensive term for the American readership, but you have to realise that the idea of it being even remotely offensive is totally new to me, and maybe on my first explaining post I kind of dismissed it because it's like some yawning cultural offence chasm where I have to squint and get my telescope out to see what's on the other side. I hope I don't have a reputation on this forum of being a stubborn arse generally.

On a lighter note, Just Hungry and Cooking with Dog are AWESOME!

Rezdent

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 813
  • Location: Central Texas
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general east asian) food blog?
« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2016, 07:14:52 AM »
Lately I've been following a PBS series named "Dining with the Chef", which is Japanese home cooking.  It's recipes are simple, fresh ingredients, minimal equipment.

Not sure if you can pick up the videos, but recipes are on the website.  Here's their website:  http://www.nhk.or.jp/dwc/

thingamabobs

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 145
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general east asian) food blog?
« Reply #14 on: November 27, 2016, 12:44:35 PM »

With This Herring

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1207
  • Location: New York STATE, not city
  • TANSTAAFL!
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general east asian) food blog?
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2016, 02:52:42 PM »
+1 on Just Hungry and Cooking With Dog and Maangchi

*snip*
Maangchi is good for Korean, and she often suggests vegetarian alternatives.
*snip*

Maangchi's blog: http://www.maangchi.com/
Maangchi's YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8gFadPgK2r1ndqLI04Xvvw

For Chinese cooking, Martin Yan's video series "Yan Can Cook" is great.  It stopped airing years ago, but there are a lot of episodes floating around YouTube.  He also had a number of books.

Dicey

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9742
  • Age: 61
  • Location: NorCal
Re: Can anyone recommend a Japanese (or general east asian) food blog?
« Reply #16 on: November 28, 2016, 08:42:20 AM »
First, thank you for changing the title of your thread. Sometimes it may seem silly, but if you're a member of that group that finds it offensive, it's well, offensive. I used to work for a company that was super conscious of this. It was there I learned to avoid referring to getting "gypped". Yeah, seems that's a slur towards gypsies. Who knew?  Easy enough to delete from my vocabulary.

On topic: SLTD, yesterday I spent a couple of hours at the library preparing for next week's book sale. I kept seeing cookbooks with Asian themes. I thought of you every time I found one. If postage weren't so prohibitive, I'd buy them all and ship them to you. Which leads me to this additional suggestion: have you checked your Library? Ours has a wide variety of cuisines represented.