All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Koebi to tofu no mabo harusame / mapo bean vermicelli with bay shrimps and tofu

Quick but as tasty as mapo tofu.

1/2 of recipe with 50g mung bean vermicelli:
280 calories per serving; 17.4 g protein; 10.5 g fat; 28.3g carbohydrate; 26.7 g net carbs; 869 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce; 1364 mg with regular soy sauce); 75 mg cholesterol; 1.6 g fiber


Dinner, October 14, 2011

Recycling sushi rice. There is a small amount of frozen sushi rice, and some leftovers from two nights ago in the fridge.



Satoimo baby taro roots

Colocasia esculenta

Colocasia or Elephant Ear is probably better known as an ornamental plant. The starchy corms of Colocasia esculenta are eaten in many tropical regions. In Japan, it is said that satoimo has been cultivated since the 10th century BC or before. Japan is at the northern end of cultivation.


Sasara scrub brush

This brush made of bundled finely split bamboo or wood comes in really handy to clean pots and pans, especially those made of iron that have ingredients stuck to the bottom. Over time, frying pans made of iron become semi-non-stick when properly cared for. Brushing with sasara and a minimum amount of soap and rising under cool water is usually sufficient for cleaning. (Drying on hot cooktop and thinly spreading a tiny amount of oil after cooling complete care.) Sasara also removes most ingredients stuck to the bottom of other pots and pans (enamel-coated and stainless) relatively effortlessly.


Mizuna to age no nibitashi / mizuna and thin deep-fried tofu in broth

Crunchy mizuna stalks take on the soft, warm flavor of usuage.

Zaru strainers

Strainers come in various materials, but in our kitchen bamboo strainers are most often used. In addition to efficient draining, they are lightweight, do not conduct heat (no burning of hands or food), feel soft to the touch, and do not make a clattering noise when stacked.

They need to be dried between use and appreciate an occasional day in the sun and boiling water shower for hygiene reasons. Like other bamboo products, zaru take on a darker tint over the years.


Kenchinjiru / root vegetable and tofu soup

Warm and hearty. This is originally a temple dish cooked with kombu kelp and dried shiitake mushroom stock. As with many temple vegan dishes, sesame oil adds depth and a rich taste.


Rangiri diagonal cut

Rangiri is to cut or dice vegetables diagonally, which creates a large surface for faster cooking and better absorption of flavor without compromising chunky texture.