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Roast sesame seeds in small pan. Keep shaking.

When it starts popping and smells good, pour into grind bowl.

With wooden stick, draw circles along the bottom edge slowly.


If I rush, grind quickly, seeds jump up, get away.


Focus on the movement of stick.

Grind slowly, smoothly, firmly.

Focus on the sound, color, fragrance with joy.



Add cooked veggies. Mix up with Dashi and Soy-sauce.

Serve as a dish for body and mind.















Every time I visit Mum, I find Japan keeps changing.

Even classic interior train has display as information board.


Japanese love ‘Kaizen’- ‘continually improve all functions in daily manners’.

Japanese are proud of this word, which spread out from their small islands.

Japanese are proud of their improvement, which they can see and show in charts.


i don’t oppose. It’s good. But how about our inside?


train door

Do we forget Zen tradition?

Do we forget happiness?

Do we forget ourselves?


Can I stand still for a while?



Then I thought ‘Why I need to cook soup separately, even we drink boiling-noodle-water in restaurant?’

In Japanese Soba- buckwheat noodle restaurant after finish noodle plate, we drink the water as tradition. It is tasty. Good nutrition from Soba is mainly there, not in noodle.

Go lazy and healthy! Why not?

lazy buckwheat noodle

Lazy Buckwheat noodle

In a pot place 5cm square Konbu-dried kelp and 250cc water. Leave 20 min.

Take out extended kelp. Cut into thin lines. Back into the pot.

Heat the pot over medium flame.  After boiling up, add Sake 1Tbs, Mirin-sweet sake 1Tbs, soy sauce 2Tbs, salt 1 pinch. Wait until boiling up.

Add dried Soba noodle. Stair lightly for not sticking each other. Boil according to the package instruction.

Add veggies or whatever you like. In the photo I added Bean-card and sweet peas.

Taste the soup. If it’s too light taste, add tick sweet sauce.

Serve in a bowl. I placed Tororo Konbu-shaved kelp on top. Sprinkle Shichimi-Japanese seasoned chili.



In Soba restaurant fresh Soba noodle is made from mostly buckwheat. The dried Soba in the supermarket has more range.

For drinking soup I need to choose 80-100% buckwheat. Others have wheat more than buckwheat and the soup is very salty. 80% Soba is called Hachi-wari Soba ‘八割蕎麦’. 100% Soba is called Jyu-wari Soba ‘十割蕎麦’. Or check the ingredients. Buckwheat must be the first one. If wheat comes first, it means wheat is more than buckwheat.

Oh! Run out of Pasta. But it’s storming now,,,

Wait. I must have Japanese dried buckwheat noodles, which aunty gave me.


It turned out good result.

buckwheat pasta

Buckwheat pasta

Boil dried buckwheat noodles according to the instruction on the package.

Put sliced garlic and some olive oil in a pan. Heat it. Fry until turning into golden color. Remove garlic.

In the pan, fly other veggies, nuts, dried tomato, chili and boiled noodles.

Sprinkle boiling-noodle-water, olive oil, salt and pepper. Remove from heat.

Serve on plate. Sprinkle fried garlic.


Wow! Nice healthy Al-dente!



Gratitude to you. It was heart touching year 2013.


Happy New Year 2014.

Wish we are in present and peace.

Happy New Year


Friend’s name comes up at the corner of Facebook, saying birthday today.

I write message ‘Happy Birthday!’

as I think Birthday is the day to be celebrated.


After childhood was over, I thought it is too girly to ask to be celebrated, though.

Sushi-cake for birthday

In the morning of first birthday which I  had completed breast cancer treatment,

I got a lots of messages from my friends. Long long thread.

I realized I was and should celebrate my survival.


Yes. I’m still alive. I’m smiling and tearing. I’m happy from bottom of my heart.


Celebrate our life, our one-year effort in this difficult world. For each one of us.

Happy Birthday!


Sushi cake

Make Sushi rice. Place hot rice in a wet mold neatly. Let it cool down. Turn and place on a plate.

Place sliced cucumber,  Sahimi (raw fish), scrambled egg (cool downed) and herbs. Whatever you like.

Serve with Sushi-nori (seaweed for Sushi). Sing birthday song!

Place what you want on seaweed. Add the mixture of Soy sauce and Wasabi (ground Japanese Radish).

Roll, hold and bite it!

‘Hello Mum. I’m in front of gate about to have breakfast you made for me.’

This is my usual last call before leaving Japan

with Starbucks’ ‘Houji-cha latte’ as the last sip of Japanese drink.



Starbucks starts selling Houji-cha latte

at outside of Japan.

Nice to have home-reminder in any time.

At home? Yes.


How to make is same with chai.

Put more than 1Tbs of Houji-cha

and small amount of water in small pan.

Heat over medium flame.

Let it boiling up for a while

till water change into brown.

Add a cup of milk or soya-milk

and brown sugar.

When it turns into brown,

strain and pour into a cup.


Have a sip of warm heart wherever we are.

Traditional Japanese meal is composed of 1 soup, 3 dishes(or 1 dish) and rice bowl. 3 dishes are composed main dish and two side dishes with different way of cook.

From cooking side of view, it is lots of work to prepare small side dishes. For saving energy, when I prepare veges, I do more than for that meal, prepare for side dishes for the other days.

Most often I cook the rest of veges into Japanese pickles.


veges bathing in soup

Prepare veges. Cut veges like tomato. Blanch veges in salted boiling water like spinach.

I like slice pumpkin and mix with salt for a while. Squeeze it.

Place in a bowl with cold noodle soup.


Instead cooking noodle soup,

Put Konbu kelp in a teapot, pour boiling water, get clear soup. Add  tick sweet sauce. Wait until cool down.


Pour noodle soup. (Noodle soup has two kinds. One type is used directly. Other is used with water)


Small treats are mindful way of life. Offer kind words to the people around us. Life is pleasant.


In a pot luck party my Italian friend brought ‘hummus’. That was so healthy creamy taste.

I asked her recipe, and asked big sister to show how to cook.

Later the recipe was changed into a bit Far East way. I reduced oil, add creamy taste.

Hummus in Far East style

Drain and rinse cooked chickpeas.

Or simmer 200g chickpeas until get soft. Take husk out. Drain and rinse it.

In food prossessor put chickpeas, fresh-squeezed lemon juice, some olive oil, couple pinches of salt, 3Tbs sesame paste and yogurt.

Grind it until paste. Adjust taste. Mix well.



Sesame is produced a lot in Thailand. Here it’s very resonable price. Sesame has antioxidant for stimulate liver function, reduce cholesterol, rich in calcium, iron and dietary fiber.



In Japan monks grind sesame hours by hands as Zen practice. Temple signature dish is ‘Sesame card’.

I love it but too lasy to do the practice. I use Sesame powder. It has still fine grain, which is fun to eat too.

Sesame card

In a small pot, place Konbu kelp 3cm long and cold water 4oocc. Heat over lower middle flame. Just before boiling up, take kelp out and add sake and soy sauce same as cooking clear soup.

In a bowl place sesame powder 70g, tapoica powder 20g.

Add the soup a bit by bit. Mix well.

Pour back into the pot.  Heat over middle flame. Keep stiring.

When it gets gravy, remove from heat. Keep stiring till smooth.

Pour in a cup. Keep in fridge.

Place Wasabi or Karashi mustard on the top. Pour soy sauce a bit.

My frined took me to Indian restaurant and orderd ‘Bhindi-curry’.  Immediatly I fell in love with it, Lady’s finger curry.

Lady’s finger has lots of dietary fiber, Vitamin C, mineral and beta carotene, which stimulate immune system. It helps the body cool down and digesting protain.


Vege with Lady’s finger and Tororo-Konbu

Boil water with salt. Blanch vege (like asparagus, broccoli) and lady’s finger. Or for eggplant, peel the skin and put it in glass container with sake and sesame oil. Microwave it.

Cut the vegetable into one bite size. Chop the lady’s finger into thin slice.

Place the vege in a bowl. Add lady’s finger. Pour the Pon-zu. Place Tororo-konbu on top.


Enjoy twinkle tiny stars dancing in your mouth!



Tororo-konbu is shaved Konbu-kelp, like cotton candy. (in right photo bottom package)

Pon-zu or Aji-pon is vinegar, which you can get at supermarket in Bangkok. Or you might make by yourself.


Put Konbu-kelp 3cm long (in saucer) and cold water 300cc in small pan. When it boil up, take kelp out. See protein issue 3

Add  rice vineger 50cc (left), soy sauce 50cc (middle left),Mirin 25cc (middle right), Sake 25cc (right). When it boils again, Take 5 breath. Pour into glass jar. Wait untill cool down. Keep in fridge.

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