Monday, February 23, 2009


Japanese cuisine is elegant and refined. The essence of Japanese food lies in its simplicity and flavour.

I think it's a great party idea because sushi rolls can be made several hours in advance but always store it chilled because the rule about sushi is- it has to be consumed at its best, which is the same day or even better, immediately. It also makes a delightful finger food adding to the array of colours and varieties. The varieties are endless and quite frankly, i just didn't quite know where to begin.

From the Chicken Kara-age, which is Japanese style fried chicken flavoured with ginger to the authentic Japanese grill over hot sizzling sauce baste on the Yakitori kebab pieces placed on the skewers in alternating order are simply marvellous. Yakitori are ideal for barbecues or parties as one can prepare them ahead of time and store them marinated until it's time for the grill.

A must have accompanying dip sauce- Tempura sauce and Japanese soy sauce.

Wasabi is Japanese horseradish. It is most famous in form of green paste used as condiment for sashimi (raw fish) and sushi.

Some sushi accessories that i'd found from a Japanese little store in a Mall i had bought to make work light for sushi rolling and moulding. I had hoped that even my younger son would be able to make some for himself whenever he wanted a quick snack.

But later found that the press mould was a little tricky even for me especially if the rice was not sticky enough. So the children usually prefer to either do a California roll (triangular wrap with the seaweed piece) or roll the usual way with the seaweed and then cut into bite sized pieces.

Simple Rolled Sushi

Variety shaped sushi

Some popular sushi names to get acquainted so you can order with ease-

-Nigiri are those with fish, shellfish, etc. on top

-Norimaki are those rolled out ones then cut into bite sized pieces. Did you know that these kind are only popular outside of Japan but rarely in Japan?

-Temaki are those cone shaped nori seaweed we usually refer to them as California Rolls.

-Gunkan are those with the sea urchin and various kinds of fish eggs. These are really the cool ones. My boys go gaga with these and snapped them up quicker than they could replenish on the conveyor belt in a Japanese Restaurant.

Chicken & Prawn Hot Pot

also known as Yosenabe, for a 4 pax,

400g chicken thigh or breast fillet
8 raw tiger prawns
4 shiitake mushrooms, stems removed
3 leeks, sliced diagonally
6 small tofu , cut into bite pieces

in 1 litre of kombu and bonito stock
6 tsp sake or dry white wine
2 tbsp of soy sauce
4 ysp of mirin
a pinch of salt

Miso Soup

A Japanese tradition which is very nutritious and delicious, a popular accompaniment that usually goes with a Bento, which is an adorable Japanese lunch box that offers not only a delicious slice in presentation, taste and colour but also a very healthy meal.

Is it any wonder that the Japanese are enjoying healthier and even more youthful lives even into old age. Is it not an astounding fact that more than 20,000 Japanese are over a 100 years old? Life expectancy in Japan, for both men and women, is statistically, still very much, the highest in the world.

Trout marinated with Teriyaki Sauce, grilled

Baked Salmon in Miso Sauce.

This one is too easy. i think i can do this blind folded- (with the fold slightly more over the top, of course :P)

here, i add in a few dashes of Japanese soy sauce, miso paste, some olive oil, a large tablespoon of butter and lots of grated cheese- a great pouch lunch with some rice after 10-15 min at 350F/180C. Open the foil and usually i throw in more cheese at this point and then bake it for a further 5 min or so until the cheese melts and oozes and is slightly browned.

or pan fried in a little olive oil and butter

Teriyaki Salmon in Garlic Butter Sauce

a slow searing in some olive oil, butter and finely minced garlic also releases some of the oil from the salmon pieces. Combined with the marinate and butter oils and garlic, the sauce is magical.

(And yes- if you must ask, it was a little over done because your gracious blog hostess here was trying to capture some good angled pictures while it was searing away back there?)

Cod pieces

Marinated cod pieces taste great whether poached or grilled/pan fried with butter. The secret is basically in the sauce and of course, if you use cod, the firmness and taste of the sea will just be a long affair to remember.

Vegetables deep fried in Light Batter

Tempura can be prawn or other seafood pieces as well.

Excellent with either sake (alcoholic beverage) or green tea. Finish off with some sweets of rice cake with fruit which is really a more modern version, although one would find it in aduki bean paste traditionally.

Here's some love blown out to all my blogging friends out there. Wishing you a great week ahead.. will be visiting you soon to find your posts and new happenings around the blog !

PS By the way, no Memoirs of the Geisha here- If you were the people who had clicked on my post  when i first hit the PUBLISH button- you would have noticed a great part of incoherence, which is nothing strange about me usually- but .. the truth is, i did this post, putting all these pictures together in my insomniac, clarity of mind could be a tiny disadvantage.

Further editing only made more sense afterward- i hit the bed like 6 am this morning and.. I'm cranky!!  Can someone get me a double Expresso, please?



Patti Cakes said...

My mother makes sushi. I need to have her teach me. Whenever there's a church get together she always takes sushi. Yum

Judy said...

Sushie always looks so artistically beautiful ! But I sure would not wish to eat it! Your photos are lovely!

SILVER said...

Patti Cakes- yeah, that's a wonderful idea! I know of a Japanese neighbour who brings home packed sushi lunch to work everyday.

Judy- as much as i agree with you, Sushi is art. But they seem to beg me for them to be eaten. I oblige, usually.

Patti Cakes said...

Yes, shopping again. It's getting to be a weekly event.

SILVER said...

Patti Cakes -

i am so jealous..

i live in the woods remember.. for me, it's an Annual affair.

Walking on Sunshine... said...

Wow, that's impressive that you can make your own!!! Enjoy your day!

kevtcs182 said...

wow.....! Yummy....! can't bear it. wiping my saliva now. hahaha...

Judy said...

We had a sushi restaurant open in our town a little over a year ago. My son and his wife took me on my birthday in September. I had never had sushi in my life and was not too keen on it then. To my surprise I loved it!

SILVER said...

WOS- it's not that tricky once you get the hang of things.

Kev- another Sushi fan, huh?

Judy- like most food taste- some needs time and a few more come-back and-give-it-another-go thing before you actually acquire a liking to it. Mine with Japanese food is like that. Looks like you took on better than i did!

kimmcl said...

I just wanted to thank you for your kind words. My hubby said the same thing - give it time. So that's what I'm gonna do - and in the meantime, I will enjoy reading your blog and those of other great women like you! Like your blog says, "One Day At A Time" - well said!

SILVER said...

Kim- thanks for your kind words.

I have to say the same for yours, as well. Keep writing and posting, Kim!

So blessed! said...

Thanks so much for your prayers!

Also, I would love to here the home remedy for these stones. I don't want to have surgery for sure.

The funny looks delicious. Not sure about sushi though...

Cynthia said...

This is so neat, thanks for sharing I learn a lot blogging. Cindy

SILVER said...
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SILVER said...
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Marie Reed said...

Romance for me is linked with Japanese food. My first date with Francois was in a Japanese restaurant:)

Raggedy Girl said...


Thank you so much for stopping by. I love new friends. And I really love sushi....

Roberta Anne at
Little House in the Desert

Shelia said...

Hi and it's so nice to meet you. I'm so glad you feel at home when visiting my blog - you've made my day!
Oh, I'm so impressed you can make your own sushi. Good instructions too.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Charles Gramlich said...

I love Sushi but have nothing at home to make it right. I was planning on going out for some today.

Great pictures. Makes me hungry for sure.

Patti Cakes said...

I had a good b-day. Got flowers, cards, cake, a book and John took me out to dinner.

When I feel bad I go shopping but then when I feel good I go shopping too. heehee. I like to go to this one store because things are so cheap.

When we lived in Scotland I had to ride the bus into the city to go shopping. It was a long ride so I'd go in the morning, stay all day and then ride home in the evening. Then I had to walk a mile from the bus stop. I took only buy and carry things that weren't too heavy.

We lived in Germany and someone gave me a bicycle. John put a basket on it and off I'd go to do my shopping.

Here I just get in the car and drive about 7 minutes and I'm there. We live just outside of town.


SILVER said...

Marie- oo..tell me more!

Roberta Anne- see, we have so much in common!

Shelia-how very nice to meet you too!

Charles Gramlich- er, if you haven't got the "tools" to make it at home, yeah.. it saves you years of your life to just grab some from outside!

SILVER said...

Cindy- how kind!

In our culture, we like to say, it's an honour to "exchange ideas" ;)

becomingkate said...

My late husband was a karate instructor that loved all things Japanese, and a few years after he passed away my daughter learned to make sushi (maki?) in high school. My favourites have cucumber.
Have a good Wednesday!

SILVER said...

becomingkate- i say, karate instructors are one of the coolest people on earth- becos something abt them .. disiplined, calm and gentle.
oh-those japanese cucumbers, they do look a lot like zucchini, don't they?

i hope you find your new joys in the daily, girl!

Gill - That British Woman said...

I must make more of an effort to try sushi. I know my kids love it, but haven't really tried it before.

Gill in Canada

SILVER said...

Gill- with a blog like yours, you could do anything!

SILVER said...

Hey Patti Cakes- don't know why this came a lot later. But glad it did, anyway.

shopping is so therapeutic- i know what you mean. Days when i say "NO" to an offer to shopping, someone always takes my temperature.

I'm so glad you had fun and a wonderful birthday, m' dear. Hugs in return..

Deb said...

Thanks for stopping by, come by any time!

SILVER said...

Deb- thanks. you bet.

So Blessed-
That is true- when the situation is a little that calls for more immediate attention, like in your case because it's inflamed, I would , if it's my family members who were in your shoes, I WOULD say, the good ol' Doc knows BEST !

Home remedies really should be something to be considered if it's on a preventive basis.. and when you're not hurting.

I await good news of your successful procedure and bounce back to a speedy recovery! hugs-

lvroftiques said...

OMG! Pardon my language but I'm having a foodie blogasm! Ooohhh the sushi pictures are making my mouth water! It's my absolute fave! Doesn't hurt that hubby is Japanese so we have it often! *winks* And I live on miso soup and green tea! I'm for sure gonna try the Baked Salmon in Miso Sauce. Looks sooo delish! Thanks Silver! And thanks for coming back to visit me! You're welcom any time! Vanna

SILVER said...

Oh my darlin'- you just make me chuckle! and is that really? Mr Lucky is a Japanese? wow.....does he happen to be a karate instructor, too? Don't say he is- that WOULD be too much for me to take all in one day, girl! goin' to use this under the comment section for "middle aged naughty quotes.." hehe

Susan S. said...

Very Impressive! I've NEVER tried to make my own sushi.....and only have it in restaurants about 10 times. It's delcious!

Anonymous said...

Hello! :)

BECKY said...

Wow Silver...what a great post! I have never had sushi, sashimi, or very much Japanese at all! You make it all look and sound so delish!!

Hubby and one daughter really love it, though!!

You have quite the culinary talent, huh??

Have a great weekend!!
Thanks for your bloggy friendship, Silver!!

SILVER said...

Thankful Paul: Hello too! :)

Hey Becky- You guys haven't try sushi or anything Japanese (food) yet?? No- get out of here! You're kidding me! Try it. It's a pathway of no return.

SILVER said...

Susan S.- opps, soory..didn't see you there! er, it's not that hard to make.. but i think eating out can be more fun.. unless your Mr Love is sushi chef for the kitchen .. hehe

can be quite messy messy!!!!!but if you're used to the steps for those little sushis that you pop into your mouth in a second, then you save tons($) doing it yourself.

Otherwise, it's a bit like dropping coins very quickly into the slot machine.. ka ching!

Happy To Be said...

Oh Silver this all looks so YUMMY I love Tempura it my all time favorite thing to eat..Now my granddaughter could eat everything you have here..she just lovs Japanese food..thanks for sharing hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

SILVER said...

Gloria ..i hope your g-daughter enjoys oggling at these yum yums - wish i can share it all with all of you not just e-virtual..

sending both of you an e-virtual HUG and smooch as well!

Tracy said...

wow you make it all look so good. now i am craving sushi!!

lvroftiques said...

Hey girl! Naw my hubby isn't a karate instructor *winks* But he can fix ANYTHING! I kid you not! Which is a good thing because I can barely fix my own hair! Lol! But you know.....grandeur... delusions! Lol! And everyone is eligible for my blog giveaway! I'll send it anywhere in the world....Thankfully it isn't very large *winks* Yeppers I do love cherubs...just can't help myself...guess they make me feel thin! Haha! Love Vanna

SILVER said...

Tracy- all this talk.. me too!

Vanna- you just crack me up! You're such a bunch of delightful sunshine.
How can anybody stands you, huh?? love&hugs

kimmcl said...

Hi! Hope you are having a nice weekend. I left a surprise for you on my post today.
Take care,

Neabear said...

Just stopping by to say Thanks for stopping by my blog. I have read through a few of your posts and was pleasantly surprised to see you also do cross stitch. Are you currently working on a project?

kimmcl said...

HA! Very funny! ;))

The Oldie King said...

Hey Silver. Love your blog. Keep up the good work and by the way, thanks for the info about Japanese cuisines.

Silver said...

Kim- thks.

Neabear- not seriously. just simple tiny pieces.

Oldie King- always a pleasure..

Anonymous said...

Nigiri, Gunkan and Sashimi- our family's favourites! We have it every week-end at our favourite Japanese restaurant near where we shop for our groceries.


SILVER said...

K Kimoto- :)