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Food Holidays at Home: The Taste of Japan

Food Holidays at Home: The Taste of Japan

14 Jul 2020 Travel Stories

COVID-19 has impacted everyone's lives to some extent, and having a postponed holiday certainly isn’t the worst of it - but it’s still incredibly disappointing.

While we are busy doing everything we can to manage bookings and get back to normal as soon as possible, we thought we would bring the holiday to you instead. 

We have decided to launch Food Holidays at Home - a blog series where we will be deep-diving into different cuisines and exploring how you can bring them to life in your own home.

This month on Food Holidays at Home, we’ll be looking at Japanese cuisine. Let's start with the basics of Japanese home cooking.

The ingredients:
  • Medium grain (sushi) rice
  • Japanese soy sauce
  • White miso
  • Seaweed
  • Daikon radish
  • Rice wine
  • Tofu
  • Bonito flakes
  • Shiitake mushrooms
  • Sesame seeds
  • Fresh ginger
  • Leeks
  • Shichimi togarashi (seven-ingredient red pepper powder)
  • Dried and fresh noodles (e.g. soba and udon)

You do not need all of these ingredients upfront but having a few on hand is always a good idea. You will always be able to bring Japan to the dinner table with sushi rice, seaweed and miso soup! Moving beyond that, you can browse our handful of Japanese recipes ranging from beginner to experienced cooks below.


Beginner cooks

Nothing is more synonymous with Japanese cuisine than sushi! Luckily, it is also a really easy one to master for beginners and home cooks. This recipe will have you rolling and slicing 32 perfect little rice, salmon and avocado rolls in no time. Combine sushi with any one of the other recipes in this list as an entrée, or make a few different varieties for a sushi party main. 

Tonkatsu Pork
Beginner cooks

This Tonkatsu Pork recipe will take you straight to Tokyo. Thick pork loin chops coated in golden panko breadcrumbs and drizzled with a rich cross-cultural sauce will taste amazing, what could be better as a midweek meal? It is quick, easy and it will take you about 30 minutes. Plus, the leftovers can be used to make katsudon, a steaming hot crumbed pork, rice and egg bowl. 

Ramen Noodle Soup
Intermediate cooks

Ramen is an interesting culinary venture because it can take anywhere from an hour to a week to make. How is that possible? Well, ramen is a simple dish composed of many complex layers of silky noodles, richly marinated meat, deep warming broth and endless toppings. This recipe calls for six hours of preparation time but you can get away with much less if you skip some of the home-made ingredients and replace them with good quality store-bought products from Japan. 

Karaage Chicken
Intermediate cooks

Japan's answer to home-fried chicken is even better than KFC. Succulent yet crispy golden-fried chicken thigh plus a luxurious soy-ginger marinade equals happiness. Try it for yourself. This recipe uses a double-fry method to achieve the ultimate in cracker-crisp skin. It also has a handy photo guide. Serve with kewpie for an authentic mouth-vacation.

Experienced cooks

This gyoza recipe is best suited to more capable and experienced home-cooks. Gyoza is tricky and can require plenty of patience! These little guys are not overly selective when it comes to their fillings: most ground meats and vegetables can be combined and wrapped into thin dough parcels, steamed and pan-fried to become the perfect gyoza. The hard part is the folding but with a little determination, you can do it! One big gyoza-making session can yield up to 50 bite-sized pieces, so make a big batch and freeze the rest for later.

Got a suggestion for our next Food Holidays at Home blog? Reach out to us on social media!

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