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Sakura Soup Japanese Vegan 桜スープ [Recipes Spring 春レシピ]


日本語のレシピはビーガン情報サイト、”Hachidory " で ご覧ください。



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It is the best season of the year !

Everything is sprouting !

The greens and the colorful tiny wild flowers captivate my heart once I go out.

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  Ohinunofuguri

 

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Hotokenoza / Buddah sitting on the cushion, named from its looks.  



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Hakobe,  very tiny and sweet, yet very poweful  flowers





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Kakidoshi, I like to drink this as tea.  It is said effective for diabetes.


It is an awesome feeling to feel the warm sunshine on my back and the breath of the spring in the air!

 

Sakura, cherry blossoms have started blooming earlier this year. 

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Sakura is not always pink.  This is white sakura. 


I think they will be fully blooming in a week time.

 

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Life of Sakura is not long, it is only one to two weeks.

Therefore, you have to leave yourself to luck when you plan to visit Japan to enjoy Sakura in the spring, unless you are ready to move to northern places to catch the timing of the blooming. 
 

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Japan is a long island, so there’s more than one-month gap between the most southern part and the northern part.

Even if you missed the timing in Tokyo for example, most likely you can still see sakura fully blooming in Sendai or Hokkaido. 

 

Today I want you to enjoy the Japanese spring with your eyes first before going to the recipe of one of them.

For all the dishes, I am using preserved sakura blossoms.


This is my hand made preserved blossoms that I made last year using the sakura called "Yaezakura" which is more suitable for cooking purpose as it has lots of petals and its color is more pink than other types of sakura.

You can purchase them from the shops.   ( I am pasting the link in the receipe.)

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I am serving you from the dessert...

 

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Sakura shaped agar agar jelly



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Sakuramohi,  most popular Japanese spring sweets




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This is another version of  "Sakuramohi", 
pupular in the western part of Japan.






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Sakura dango





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Umegaemochi 




Here are the savory dishes...

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Spring Sushi Rice





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Soup with sea vegetable to accompany sushi rice




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Spring fresh vegetable salad

 

I selected the second easiest recipe for you to try.

So scroll down to get it !

 

 

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Japanese Spring & Botamochi ぼた餅 [Recipes Spring 春レシピ]


日本語のレシピは ビーガン情報サイト"Hachidory"から ご覧ください。


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♫♪♬    Merrily Merrily Merrily Merrily life is but a dream  ♫♪♬


 

This song poured out from my mouth when I am taking a walk these days.

Yes, the spring is here at last !!

The air smells fresh and green,

The wild flowers show their tiny faces shyly above the ground . 

The plum blossoms are fully blooming.

 

Oh, my !  how I am blessed, 

I don't need any other things other than spring !

I feel so happy and contented,

though a kind of guilt and sympathy to those who can't reach to this freedom always creep into my mind.

 

It is the "Shunbun" / spring equinox day tomorrow, and also is now in the midst of  "Ohigan" in Japan.

"Ohigan" lasts 7 days starting three days before the spring eqinox day (or autumn equinox day ) and ending three days after that.  

Some people visit the grave to pray for the ancesters and clean up the area.

Some do not, but eat "Botamochi" or "Ohagi" .

Some do not practice anything, but remember that the day time will be longer soon.

 

Most of the Japanese people do no know why they visit the grave on "Ohigan" and eat "Botamochi/ Ohagi" during this period.

 

It is considered that the heaven or the world for the deceased exists in the west, and this actual living world exists in the east.  Therefore the day that sun rises from the very east and sets into the very west is the best day to connect the living and deceased.  

 

"Botamochi/Ohagi" is made of glutinous rice and sweet red beans.

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The combination of rice and red beans had so much meaning since old days.

In fact, modern nutritional study revealed that it has a big nutritious value in those combination.   

Japanese people in older  days knew it from their experience.  

 

Actually "Botamochi " and "Ohagi" refer to the same thing.

This sweet cake is called "Botamochi" in the spring, and "Ohagi" in the fall.

Why ?

In the spring, the flower of Botan blooms, and in the fall, the one of Hagi blooms.

("mochi" means glutinous rice cake.) 

 

But usually people in Kanto area use the word, "Ohagi" for both spring and fall season ones.

Whenever the spring equinox day  or autumn equinox day approaches, I feel like eating  Ohagi and cook it for myself .

 

I am sharing a recipe of three color "Botamochi/Ohagi" of different flavors today.

 

 

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Spring Cabbage 春キャベツ炒め [Recipes Spring 春レシピ]

 


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The spring is coming to the end in Japan.


The pink and yellow colours are fading and greenish colors are prevailing in the field.


A tone of the sky is changing to lighter blue.


The air is more moist.


We can still enjoy this transitional period though we have to say farewell to the most beautiful season .


Yes, we can always find our happiness in the food of that particular season no matter if it is too humid or too cold.


Guess, what I am writing about today.


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The cabbage !!


It is a popular vegetable which is usually available all thruoug the year in all over the world.


The cabbage that is harvested in cold seasons and hot seasons are different.


We use the term Yin and Yang in Macrobiotics,


and the former generally can be applied for the hot season harvests,


and the latter for the cold season harvests.


Going back to about cabbage...,


we call "Haru Kyabetsu", literally means "Spring Cabbage" for the ones that we can harvest from spring to summer.


Its leaves are thinner and softer, and more moist.


The layers of the leaves are less densed having some air in between.


 


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So as you may be imagining, it is more suitable for raw cooking or quick cooking rather than simmering or slow cooking.


Today I show you my most favorite way of cooking the spring cabbage.


It is so simple yet so delicious !!

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Bamboo Shoot 竹の子 [Recipes Spring 春レシピ]


日本語のレシピは、ビーガンライフをご紹介している Hachidory から ご覧ください。



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Here boo, there boo, everywhere boo boo ....


It's a bamboo season here in Japan !


The bamboo sprouts are penetrating the ground every morning during this season.


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We can't wait till they grow to the  height that we want it to be, but they have to be dug when they are still short showing only their tips over the ground.

Otherwise bamboos over grow and their flesh turn harder.


It is a hard work to dig them up.


The other day I went to Atarashik Mura's bamboo woods area to see the bamboo shoots, and also the resident digging them out.   


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He told me he diggs about 500 bamboo shoots from April to May and it is a physically very tough job. (but sounded he is very proud of it and even enjoying his work.)   


I passed my message how I appreciate their hard work not only digging bamboo shoots, but also for sharing organic vegetables and rice that they grow for themselves,  taking care of the area which is full of beautiful wild flowers and plants, and opens it to public generously.     

(This Atarashiki Mura is my most favorite place in this town which in fact, I do not really wish to reveal.)


The bamboo shoots were so fresh and nice !!

It is my prilvillage to be able to cook and eat the bamboo shoot on the very day that it is dug up.


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I made bamboo shoot rice as well as bamboo shoot and wakame sea vegetable soup, with other spring wild vegetables, warabi ohitashi and butterbur shoot mixed with sesame paste.

It was a such a luxury set meal to enjoy spring flovour !


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I introduced bamboo shoot salad recipe last year in this blog.

This spring, I am passing you a deep-fried bamboo shoot recipe.

For this recipe,  Bamboo shoot is not necessarily very fresh nor very tender.

The canned one can produce satisfactory taste and texture.

So try it !

Your kids would love it as they look like meat balls !



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フキ味噌 Butterbur Shoot Miso [Recipes Spring 春レシピ]

日本語のレシピ、最後に あります。
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What is the first thing to tell you that the spring has come ?

For me, it is the  the wind blowing from the south on one sunny day, 

A tiny red wild flower called "Hotokenoza" in the field, 

A few pretty plum flowers that have just bloomed.

One more thing that makes my heart beat with excitment is

"Fukinotoh / Japanese butterbur shoot.

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A box of vegetables and fruit sent by Mr. Takahashi from Shizuoka prefecture is like a fortune bag for me.

(The background picture of the website of my cooking class is the vegetables that he sent to me.  I change it according to the season.   Check it once a while to enjoy Japanese seasonal vegetables.  http://kurinascooking.la.coocan.jp/ )

I can't get to know what are inside  till I opened the box each month.   

So it is an exciting moment to remove the packing tape from the cardboard box.  

His vegetables are so precious for me as they are raised very natural way. 

They are different from organic vegetables, which are often raised with organic fertilizer, involving weeding of unwanted grass and also sometimes killing of unwanted insects.

Every year I see my first Fukinotoh of the year in the box of Takahashi's vegetables either late January or early February.

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Just a few pieces of them are wrapped in the newspaper.

"Oh, my goodness !"  I cannot stop uttering this word when their site popped into my eyes.

They are tiny, light green,  roundish, and look very delicate and fragile.

Fukinotoh tells us the spring is around the corner even though it is still very cold in the morning and night, and makes me feel so delighted.

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Fukinotoh bud, has not opened yet.

I am showing you how I enjoy the first taste of spring today.

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