Thursday, September 24, 2015

Too cute to eat! Japanese “chigiri-pan” trend creates 3D character bread

Three-dimensional character bread, called chigiri-pan( chigiri means breaking into small pieces), is currently trending on Japanese Instagram. At the moment, chigiri-pan is also booming in the recipe searching site “Cookpad”.

These upright, fluffy loaves are handcrafted by artistic bakers and their shapes are some popular characters such as Disney, Ghibli and Moomins.

Different colours are achieved by mixing of variety of coloured powders into the dough, including cocoa, green tea powder etc.

It must take more than a little trial and error to perfect making chigiri-pan, but the finished product sure is fun to look at, but too cute to eat!

Why don’t you try to make some chigiri-pan for yourself?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Japanese whisky takes the world by storm!

Many of you might think that Japanese only drink sake, but we actually produce a whisky in Japan.
It is still fresh in our memories that the number one prizewinner in the 2015 edition of the world whisky bible was Suntory's “Yamazaki” malt single whisky.

Japan, with it’s access to abundant water sources, boasts an environment that is beautifully suited for producing whisky. The Japanese method of distilling is taken from Scotland, however it has evolved into a uniquely Japanese expression over time. Japanese whiskies are delicate and suave, but never aggressive.

Acclaim for whisky is similarly rising domestically, due in part to the recent whisky-themed NHK television drama “Massan,” which was based on the life of Nikka Whisky founder Masataka Taketsuru.

Clearly, the trend of Japanese whisky has no end in sight.  

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The birthplace of Japanese Denim, Kojima, Okayama

There is a town called Kojima in Okayama, which is dominated by denim companies : head offices, mills, laundries and indigo dyeing houses. If you want to learn about true Japanese denim, this is the place to go.

As well as many other fantastic names that the U.S. and European countries may not yet not know but are well worth attention. The is so dominated by denim that they even have a jeans street, home to many local companies’ stores.

The area of Kojima was used to be dedicated to school uniform manufacturing and the employees believed that they could produce their denim jean by themselves, however there were no fabrics and sewing machines in Japan.

After all, back in 1965, they imported all materials from U.S. and produced first jean in Japan. Then, after 8 years, in 1973, they produced their first “made in Japan “ jean by all materials from Kojima.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Autumn “the season for appetite”. Enjoy the taste of Pacific saury in season!

What kind of food comes to mind when you think of autumn?
Probably, most of Japanese people would choose this as one of autumn foods.
It is “Pacific saury”.

Pacific saury, (Sanma), is one of the most prominent seasonal foods representing autumn in Japanese. It is rich in nutrients, reasonable and many Japanese look forward to eating a saury in season.

It is most commonly served salted and grilled whole, garnished with daikon oroshi (grated mooli) with condiments include soy sauce, or lime, lemon or other citrus juices.

The intestines are bitter, but many people choose not to gut the fish, as many say its bitterness, balanced by the condiments, is part of enjoyment.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

fang-like teeth is a symbol of cuteness?!

It could be the odd fashion trend, but some Japanese womens are spending considerable sums of money on attaining uneven or “snaggle teeth”. It is known as “yaeba”, which translates as “double tooth”.

It is a sense of beauty unique to the Japanese, but “yaeba” can be an attractive feature on women in their teens and twenties.

They can have either temporary or permanent artificial canines, called “tsuke-yaeba”, glued to their teeth.

Surprisingly, there is a pop group consists of girls with “tsuke-yaeba”.

Don’t take your eyes off the Japanese odd fashion trend!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Welcome to the dark side of Japan!

The first issue of a travel magazine dedicated to sites associated with negative legacies like war and natural disasters hit bookstores this summer.

While most tourist sites in Japan tend to focus on the bright and admirable aspects of their history or circumstances, the new travel magazine, Dark Tourism Japan, published by Million Publishing, encourages readers to enrich themselves through visits to places with dark pasts.

Ide, who took part in editing of this magazine, told “ The travel of the memory of the sorrow - dark tourism helps to find out the idea of deep root in Japan”

Why don’t you experience ‘Dark tourism’ the next time you visit Japan?

Friday, September 18, 2015

Everyone loves Chocolates!

It’s said the very first Japanese person in history who tried chocolate was Mr. Hasekura Tsunenaga in Mexico in 1613.He was a Japanese samurai and retainer of Date Masamune, the daimyo of Sendai.In the years 1613 through 1620, Hasekura headed a diplomatic mission to the Vatican in Rome, traveling through New Spain and visiting various ports of call in Europe.

In Japan, March in 1797, a prostitute “Yamatoji”who lived in Nagasaki was presented 6 chocolates by a Dutcman and then she reported and presented that Yamatoji. The Dutch might have brought chocolate when they were assigned to Japan. Many Dutchmen lived in Nagasaki Dejima presented their used beddings or tools to prostitutes when they returned to their country.

Now there are so many kinds of Japanese chocolates sold not only in Japan and also in foreign countries. Surprisingly Japanese consume chocolate the most in the world. We love new experiment like flavored chocolates such as pumpkin, soy sauce and onion. You may find lots of chocolates all over in Japan and try something that you haven’t had before in your life! Experiment!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Shichimi Togarashi, the Japanese Seven Spices

A popular food souvenir at some Japan’s famous shrine festivals and tourist sites, Shichimi Togarashi is a blend of seven flavors that tickles the tongue and enhance the flavor of noodles, grilled meat, and more. A typical blend may contain coarsely ground red chili pepper, ground sansho (Japanese pepper), roasted orange peel, black sesame seed, white sesame seed, hemp seed, ground ginger and nori or aonori (seaweed). Some recipes may substitute or supplement these with poppy seed, yuzu peel, rapeseed or shiso.

Originally sold by herbal medicine shop in the 17th century in Edo, currently in Tokyo, Shichimi Togarashi is a spicy-savory blended of coarsely ground chilies plus varying ingredients depending on the region, manufactures and cook.

We sprinkle this Shichimi Togarashi over Udon noodles, Yakitori, hot pot dish, beef bowl the Gyudon, tempura and lots more! Enjoy sprinkle the Japanese Seven Spices, the Shichimi Togarashi!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Cat Street View in the city of Onomichi!

Fancy strolling the streets of Japan as a cat? Now you can with a new online map-called cat street view-which allows tourists to explore the streets of the city Onomich, where 150,000 cats inhabitants, from the perspective of a feline.

“We decided to focus on cats because they know everything about the city, including the back streets,” a tourism spokesman said.

So far, the map just covers two streets, but they are going to expand its reach by using a camera attached to a stick that hovers 20 cm above the ground-a cat height-and able to see the city from a cat’s perspective.