Summer inari-zushi

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Inari is the type of sushi contained in a sweetly soaked pouch of fried tofu. The pronunciation is Zushi in this word, inarizushi.
With season produce, they make a pleasant plant-based lunch.

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I told you that so far the rainy season was a dry one, but that’s changing as we are reaching the end : It rains seriously !

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I bought this. 油揚げ, abura age. They are slices of tofu, deep-fried.

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Cut and they become little bags to contain your sushi.


My rice is a mix of mochigome (sticky rice) and genmai (brown rice) . Flavored with kurosu (black rice vinegar), very little salt and grated carrot.

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I rinsed the abura age pouches with hot water to eliminate the excess of oil, then simmered them in a little sweet broth (shoyu soy sauce, kurozato black sugar, chili pepper and laurel). I don’t want mine too sweet.
Toppings : edamame fresh soy beans, fresh sweet corn, sweet green chili, carrot.

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Served with kaiware daikon sprouts.

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My chunky ume plum chutney…and beautiful skin nightcap

Nothing better than home-made chutney.
Remember, I told that in Japan, in this season, it rains plums ! Or it should, as we have beautiful weather, dry rainy season so we won’t have enough water for rice, which is another story.

So, the plums, Japanese black vinegar, new onions, raisins, goji berries, cinnamon, yellow sugar…

I simmer them twice, I let the mix cool overnight so the raisins take full volume.

I keep the jars in the fridge as I probably didn’t use enough sugar to preserve them at room temperature.

Now I will reveal you something.
A friend is a beautician, and she is very successful precisely because she has the most beautiful skin of the world. I have asked her secret. Good skin care, good lifestyle… and every night, before going to bed, she has this snack :

yogurt +
cold pressed virgin olive oil +
matcha tea powder

You can add honey as a sweetener and substitute rare and expensive matcha by green tea powder as it also contains the wonderful catechines. I don’t know if that’s effective as no research has been made, but you never know. My skin has become beautiful… well, I think.
Good night !

Second half of June 2010 : Illustrated Menu

First half of June 2010 : Illustrated Menu

Asian balsamico ? Chinese and Japanese black rice vinegar, with a full veggie grilled dinner.

Chinese 香醋 (xiangcu) and Japanese  黒酢 (kurozu).
They are black rice vinegars, made from husked rice. This page in Japanese shows the Chinese vinegar being made, they say the difference is the Chinese use steamed sticky rice and a long process of maturation (more than 6 months), which is different from Japanese process that is not explained as everybody knows… well, except me. I’ll investigate some day.

Old Asian medicine and dietetics already recommended to have vinegar in your food daily. But recently, some research has found a lot of properties to vinegar, to whole food, etc… and faith in vinegar has been revived. Well, I buy the black vinegars at the pharmacy. LOL !
They probably don’t have a miracle effect, but in hot days, vinegared food makes you feel cooler. Try it ! And if you have lots of carbs, or lots of fried items, or too much salt in one meal, vinegar seems to slightly restablish some balance. I “feel” it.

The most important is they taste really very good.
As you see, the Chinese vinegar is thick, totally dark and velvety like ink. It is deeply flavored, flowery. It’s a sauce in itself, I use it as my dip for gyoza.
The Japanese one is lighter, more neutral.

You have many ways to use them.
For instance, steam or briefly boil bok choy. They are Chinese, they want the Chinese black vinegar.
Add a few drops of fragrant sesame oil. Garlic paste if you want (not today), chili pepper if you want (always).

The Japanese travel a lot in Summer. Their vinegar meets the olive oil garlic and bell pepper confits, to spice up white daifuku beans.

Let’s grill something. I see all the American bloggers grilling… It’s contagious. That’s not on the barbecue, but in the oven toaster… that makes it too.

Spicy sweet potato. When the potato is cooked, added seeds of chili pepper and toasted all that again.

Corn in the husk. Why, why, why, did they take away some leaves from my corn in the shop ? To make it kawaiii… Well done ! Then, how do I protect the grains ? With foil maybe, but I had none left. Olive oil, a little then.

Cal 508 F6.0g C105.3g P21.1g