From sushi and cold soup to cocktails, here’s how you can make an easy Japanese feast in the comfort of your home
Like many cuisines, creating Japanese food and drinks is an art. What goes to one’s plate and glass in an homage to century-old traditions, making every dish not only a celebration of flavors but also the spirit of the Land of the Rising Sun. While Filipinos are big fans of Japanese cuisine, many are not keen on recreating the country’s dishes in their kitchen and leave the cooking to the capable hands of the experts. We can’t blame them for that. Perfecting one Japanese dish is hard. But that is about to change.
On a mission of bringing Japanese cooking closer to Filipino homes is Japan External Trade Organization or JETRO. The organization intends to raise more awareness about Japanese food products, contribute to the increase in import value, and provide consumers and business owners with a deeper understanding of Japanese food ingredients. To do just that, it introduces an event series dubbed “Bringing Home a Taste of Japan.”
Leading its first event is Chef Masaaki Ishikawa. With his decades of experience in the Japanese restaurant scene and stints at Hotel Okura Manila and Sofitel Manila, the chef now runs his own Japanese food consulting service, aiming to share his expertise in menu development and opening a restaurant with aspiring Japanese restaurant owners. Earlier this month, Manila Bulletin Lifestyle got a chance to be part of the “Bringing Home a Taste of Japan” event. Below are some of the recipes we learned from Chef Ishikawa that you can easily recreate in your kitchen.
150g. Jinenjo somen noodles
5g. Grated ginger
3g. Katagi sesame seeds
60g. Somi Soba Tsuyu
1g. Sesame seeds
1. Boil somen noodles in a pot of boiling water for one to one and a half minutes.
2. Rinse under cold running water and drain thoroughly.
3. Transfer into individual bowls, and pour Mentsuyu on top of the noodles.
4. Garnish with leeks, ginger, and sesame seeds.
250g. Ozaki kani stick
15g. Ozaki Japanese mayonnaise
5g. Ozaki tobiko
0.5g. Aji Shio Kosho
10g. Fresh mango
5g. Fresh lemon juice
1. In a clean bowl, mix kani sticks, mayonnaise, shio kosho, fresh mango, and lemon juice.
2. Transfer into desired bowls and garnish with tobiko.
Kani Salmon Maki Sushi
150g. Sushi rice
½ sheet of Ozaki nori sheet
2 pcs. of Ozaki kani sticks
5g. Spring onion
1g. Katagi sesame seeds
1g. S&B Shichimi chili powder
1g. Sasa leaves
5g. Ozaki wasabi
The Food Isetan Mitsukoshi Seasame Dressing with Peanuts
1. Place nori sheet on a sushi mat.
2. Place rice on top and evenly distribute it to create an even layer. Flip over.
3. Place cucumber strips, mango, and carefully roll to secure maki.
4. Top with slices of salmon and slice.
5. Garnish with The Food Isetan Mitsukoshi Seasame Dressing with Peanuts, sesame seeds, spring onion, and chili powder.
6. Serve on top of sasa leaves with wasabi paste on the side.
13g. Shiro dashi
1. Mix all ingredients together and mix until well incorporated.
2. Using a well-oiled tamago pan over medium heat, pour enough egg mixture to cover the pan.
3. Once the egg mixture is almost set, gently roll the omelet until it resembles a log.
4. Place the rolled omelet on one end of the pan and pour another layer of the egg mixture.
5. Repeat the process until desired thickness is achieved.
6. Secure rolled omelet by using a sushi mat and set it aside to cool. Slice before serving.
Cocktail recipe: Pineapple Saketini
2oz. Ozeki Dry or Premium Junmai Sake
1oz. Pineapple juice
1 pc. Pineapple garnish
1. Pour Ozeki Dry or Premium Junmai Sake, vodka, and pineapple juice into a cocktail shaker over ice and shake well.
2. Strain into a martini glass and garnish with a slice of pineapple.
In line with its efforts to promote Japanese food and ingredients, JETRO has also launched the Japanese Food Supporter program. Restaurants that serve Japanese dishes prepared using ingredients sourced from Japan and retail stores that sell Japanese food products can apply for certification as Japanese Food Supporters.
Certified Japanese Food Supporters will be able to display the Japanese Food Supporter logo at their establishments. This seal indicates that they use high-quality, safe, and trusted Japanese ingredients. They will also gain access to more information about Japanese food and distribution networks and be able to utilize PR opportunities provided by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries on its official website.
All the ingredients, condiments, and drinks highlighted above will be available at Mitsukoshi Fresh. With the highly-anticipated opening of this supermarket, it’s easier than ever to obtain authentic ingredients and bring home a taste of Japan.