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


Hasumushi / steamed fish with grated lotus root, with light thickened sauce

A comforting steamed fish dish for winter. Enjoy the fresh taste of in-season fish that has been sealed beneath a blanket of grated lotus root. Savory thickened sauce keeps the dish warm, while pungent wasabi brightens the overall tone. Have a spoon ready!

Below is a simple example with petrale sole and dried shiitake mushroom mixed in renkon lotus root. 

1/2 of recipe:
173 calories; 24.5 g protein; 1.6 g fat; 13.6 g carbohydrate; 12.1 g net carbs; 302 mg sodium (when using shoyukoji made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce); 55 mg cholesterol; 1.5 g fiber


Horenso, moyashi, sumookusaamon no ohitashi / spinach, mung bean sprouts and smoked salmon marinated in light broth

Alderwood smoked salmon, a local specialty, works as a great addition to enhance the flavor, aroma and texture of ohitashi, a simple vegetable dish. Soaking the smoked salmon takes away some of the sodium, so this is a good way to enjoy smoked salmon if you miss it because of following a low-sodium diet. Make sure to use only a small amount of smoked salmon -- the main characters of this dish are vegetables, and overuse of smoked salmon could make it taste fishy. This recipe also works as a quick, reduced-sodium version of a past recipe featuring shiozake salted salmon, shungiku garland chrysanthemum and moyashi mung bean sprouts

1/2 of recipe:
27 calories; 4.3 g protein; 0.9 g fat; 1.7 g carbohydrate; 0.5 g net carbs; 102 mg sodium; 4 mg cholesterol; 1.2 g fiber


Kyabetsu to egoma no namuru / namul salad with cabbage and wild sesame leaves

The soft taste of cabbage is paired with the distinctive flavor of egoma wild sesame leaves. These two also complement each other in terms of aroma and color.

1/4 of recipe:
10 calories; 0.5 g protein; 0.1 g fat; 2.2 g carbohydrate; 1.4 g net carbs; 36 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0.8 g fiber


Toriniku no shiokoji remon mushi / steamed shiokoji-marinated chicken in lemon juice

Juicy and tender. A super easy and light chicken dish with shiso green perilla sauce. Tastes great hot or cold.

1/2 of recipe:
221 calories; 20.3 g protein; 13.2 g fat; 3.7 g carbohydrate; 3.6 g net carbs; 141 mg sodium; 81 mg cholesterol; 0.1 g fiber


Daikon no shiso soosu-ae / daikon radish salad with green perilla dressing

A quick salad with fresh daikon radish. Pink perilla flowers pleasantly accentuate the taste and aroma.

1/2 of recipe:
23 calories; 0.4 g protein; 1.3 g fat; 2.5 g carbohydrate; 1.7 g net carbs; 48 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0.8 g fiber


Shiso soosu / green perilla sauce

A wonderful pesto-like sauce that works as a condiment or dressing.

1 tbsp (12 g): 
39 calories; 0.3 g protein; 3.6 g fat; 1.2 g carbohydrate; 0.9 g net carbs; 113 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0.3 g fiber


Moyashi to satsumaage no itamemono / stir-fried bean sprouts and deep-fried fishcake

A light and satisfying stir-fry featuring crispy bean sprouts. Satsumaage fishcake adds a nice flavor and contrasting texture as do shiitake mushrooms, while nira garlic chives chime in with their punchy taste as egg mellows it down ... The recipe below features soybean sprouts, but mung bean sprouts work great, too. See notes for some tips when using mung bean sprouts.

1/2 of recipe:
120 calories; 9.5 g protein; 6.3 g fat; 6.7 g carbohydrate; 4.2 g net carbs; 152 mg sodium; 113 mg cholesterol; 2.5 g fiber


Kyuri to kosai no nanpura-ae / cucumber and cilantro in nam pla dressing

A spicy and refreshing relish-like dish. Let the sugar work for you to reduce the amount of salty nam pla...

1/2 of recipe:
16 calories; 1.0 g protein; 0.1 g fat; 4.1 g carbohydrate; 3.2 g net carbs; 78 mg sodium (with 2/3 tsp nam pla; 116 mg sodium with 1 tsp nam pla); 0 mg cholesterol; 0.9 g fiber


Kaiware daikon / daikon radish sprouts

A standard sprout in Japan that comes with crispy stems and a pungent taste, which naturally remind of  fresh daikon radish. It makes a great garnish for any dish, including steaks, grilled fish, hiyayakko chilled tofu, fried or grilled tofu, sashimi, miso soup and nimono simmered dishes, and works really well in temakizushi hand-rolled sushi, sandwiches, salads, sunomono with rice vinegar dressing, gomaae with sesame dressing ... the list is endless.


Egoma no kimuchi / kkaennip kimchi / wild perilla leaf kimchi

This simple Korean pickle of egoma wild sesame leaves is a great companion for rice. While some people do not care for fresh egoma leaves, the pickling process nicely softens their distinctive aroma and taste, transforming this Korean shiso into an appetizing accent for everyday meals.

5 egoma leaves (1/8 of recipe): 
26 calories; 1.0 g protein; 0.3 g fat; 4.3 g carbohydrate; 3.7 g net carbs; 75 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0.6 g fiber


Koebi no mabodofu / mapo tofu with bay shrimp

Very tasty. One of my favorite Chinese dishes from our kitchen, now made to be sodium savvy by tweaking seasoning in the original recipe -- replacing sake with Shaoxing wine, black bean paste with black beans themselves, partially replacing soy sauce with shoyukoji as well as tobanjan with red chili pepper, and adding kurozu brown rice vinegar. While this features bay shrimp, it is also good with ground or finely chopped pork or a combination of pork and beef.

1/4 of recipe:
174 calories; 12.8 g protein; 7.3 g fat; 12.6 g carbohydrate; 11.6 g net carbs; 351 mg sodium (when using 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce and shoyukoji made of reduced-sodium soy sauce); 44 mg cholesterol; 2.0 g fiber


Breakfast, September 8, 2014

For the past one year, our first choice for breakfast has been oatmeal. Every day Tom has been cooking rolled oats with equal amounts of water and whole milk, and we put our preferred toppings when we eat. The main drawback is that we get really hungry before 11 am.

I have been excited about an upcoming trip to Japan recently, and by 5 am, my eyes were wide open. So I decided to cook a Japanese breakfast to start our week.


    Nasu to atsuage, shishito no misoitame / sauteed eggplant, deep-fried tofu and shishito peppers in miso sauce

    A quick, small side dish with a somewhat sweet miso flavor. Soft and juicy eggplant contrasts well with the "green" taste of crispy shishito peppers.

    1/2 of recipe:
    171 calories; 8.6 g protein; 10.7 g fat; 8.3 g carbohydrate; 5.9 g net carbs; 222 mg sodium; 1 mg cholesterol; 2.4 g fiber


    Ebi to kyuri no itamemono / stir-fried shrimp and Japanese cucumber

    Tasty and light. The plump shrimp in this quick stir-fry are a big plus. Great as part of a meal and bento, or with drinks. Cook cucumber on high heat for a crispy finish!

    1/2 of recipe:
    102 calories; 10.7 g protein; 3.3 g fat; 6.3 g carbohydrate; 5.5 g net carbs; 188 mg sodium (when using shoyukoji made of 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce); 78 mg cholesterol; 0.8 g fiber


    Hotate no midorizu-ae / sea scallops with cucumber vinegar dressing

    A crisp and juicy summer vegetable is transformed into a fresh and mild green dressing. This cucumber dressing works great with various ingredients -- most typically seafood and vegetables, and less commonly meat. Below is an example with sauteed scallops. The soft, burnt aroma of soy sauce and sesame oil adds an interesting layer to this refreshing little dish.

    1/2 of recipe:
    84 calories; 11.4 g protein; 1.1 g fat; 6.1 g carbohydrate; 5.8 g net carbs; 128 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce; 157 mg with regular soy sauce); 20 mg cholesterol; 0.3 g fiber


    Shiifuudo to daizu moyashi no kankoku mushi / haemul jjim / steamed seafood and soybean sprouts Korean style

    This is a seafood dish, but with lots and lots and LOTS of soybean sprouts! Despite the red look, it is quite mild. Enjoy this medley of seafood and soybean sprouts together with distinctive greens in season! 

    1/4 of recipe:
    206 calories; 27.0 g protein; 3.6 g fat; 14.3 g carbohydrate; 6.4 g net carbs; 363 mg sodium (when using shoyukoji made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce); 172 mg cholesterol; 7.9 g fiber


    Nasu no hisui somen / eggplant jade noodles

    Pretty, light-green noodles with a refreshing jelly-like texture. Served with dipping sauce with tomato below for a summery marriage of flavors.

    1/2 of recipe (nasu somen noodles with condiments):
    69 calories; 1.2 g protein; 0.1 g fat; 16.5 g carbohydrate; 14.1 g net carbs; 0 mg sodium; 1 mg cholesterol; 2.4 g fiber

    When served with dipping sauce with tomato:
    122 calories; 2.7 g protein; 0.2 g fat; 26.1 g carbohydrate; 21.9 g net carbs; 281 mg sodium; 1 mg cholesterol; 4.2 g fiber


    Somen no tomato-iri tsuketsuyu / dipping sauce with tomato for thin wheat noodles

    This dipping sauce takes full advantage of the mighty tomato, which is known for its high umami content among vegetables. Many dipping sauces for noodles contain lots of sodium, and leaving more in the sauce cup naturally results in taking less sodium. But since Tom still likes to taste a bit more of the sauce than is good for him, here is a Tom-friendly variation. You can safely have a big taste of what is left in your sobachoko dipping sauce cup after finishing your noodles.

    1/3 of recipe:
    53 calories; 1.5 g protein; 0.1g fat; 9.6 g carbohydrate; 7.8 g net carbs; 281 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 1.8 g fiber  


    Kyuri to kani no shoga-amazu-ae / Japanese cucumber and crab in ginger-flavored sweetened vinegar

    Wonderfully light and pleasant on a hot day. This is a different take on an old standby, cucumber sunomono (rice vinegar dressing dish), and takes advantage of softly salty and sweet Dungeness crab in season. It's very easy to make -- just remember to let it sit for a while after mixing everything, as this has a quick pickling effect on cucumber and prevents the dish from tasting bland.

    1/2 of recipe:
    46 calories; 5.1 g protein; 0.4 g fat; 5.8 g carbohydrate; 4.9 g net carbs; 113 mg sodium; 15 mg cholesterol; 0.9 g fiber


    Caldo de camarones / Mexican shrimp soup

    A shrimp soup I enjoyed repeatedly whenever available during a road trip in Mexico years ago. Soupy but very aromatic and satisfying, thanks to the rich broth and numerous dried chili peppers that go into it.

    1/2 of recipe:
    257 calories; 23.8 g protein; 1.8 g fat; 30.8 g carbohydrate; 23.8 g net carbs; 552 mg sodium; 141 mg cholesterol; 7.0 g fiber


    Zukkiini no guriru, howajao doresshingu-gake / grilled zucchini, with Sichuan peppercorn-infused oil and soy sauce dressing

    Toasted hua jiao Sichuan peppercorns add a nice tang to the sweet note of grilled zucchini. A great starter or a side dish.

    1/4 of recipe:
    32 calories; 1.5 g protein; 1.6 g fat; 3.9 g carbohydrate; 2.5 g net carbs; 40 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce, 78 mg with regular soy sauce); 0 mg cholesterol; 1.4 g fiber


    Saishin no karashi oisutaasoosu-ae / yu choy sum in Japanese mustard and oyster sauce dressing

    This is a reduced-sodium version of chingensai no karashi oisutaasoosu-ae, but with yu choy sum. The pungent aroma of karashi gives a spicy accent to the sweet, rich note of oyster sauce. The combination goes especially well with Chinese greens, especially those with succulent stems. Baby bok choy in the original recipe and yu choy sum in the recipe below are just a few of many good choices of greens. No Chinese greens nearby? Then try broccoli (especially stems), asparagus ... Brussels sprouts are probably a great choice, too.

    1/2 of recipe:
    32 calories; 2.4 g protein; 0.1 g fat; 4.9 g carbohydrate; 2.2 g net carbs; 212 mg sodium (when using shoyukoji made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce); 0 mg cholesterol; 2.7 g fiber


    Okura no surinagashi / chilled okra soup

    A pleasant little green soup for a hot day. It cools you down from the inside as the loose, jelly-textured soup goes down your throat.

    1/2 of recipe:
    30 calories; 3.1 g protein; 0.3 g fat; 4.1 g carbohydrate; 2.1 g net carbs; 209 mg sodium; 7 mg cholesterol; 2.0 g fiber


    Hayatouri no akadashi / red miso soup with chayote

    Juicy chayote with its relatively plain taste makes a great contrast to the strong flavor of akadashi red miso broth.

    1/2 of recipe:
    31 calories; 2.1 g protein; 0.5 g fat; 4.6 g carbohydrate; 3.6 g net carbs; 245 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 1.0 g fiber


    Hiyayakko / chilled soft tofu with condiments

    This simple tofu dish is a favorite of my father. For him, thinly sliced green onion and grated ginger are essential as condiments or toppings, and whatever is available in the garden -- including shiso perilla leaves and myoga Japanese ginger buds -- are sliced up and added in summer.

    1/2 of recipe:
    89 calories; 8.2 g protein; 4.9 g fat; 2.7 g carbohydrate; 1.9 g net carbs; 94 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce; 173 mg with regular soy sauce); 0 mg cholesterol; 0.8 g fiber


    Petoraaru karei no kankoku-fu pirikara-ni / braised petrale sole in mildly spicy sauce, Korean style

    An easy and tasty fish dish with a Korean twist. Tastes good with plain rice or drinks.

    1/2 of recipe:
    226 calories; 26.4 g protein; 5.1 g fat; 12.0 g carbohydrate; 11.5 g net carbs; 340 mg sodium (when using shoyukoji made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce); 62 mg cholesterol; 0.5 g fiber


    Nasu no dengaku / eggplant with sweet miso sauce

    Creamy eggplant highlighted with sweet & salty miso sauce. While deep-frying is an orthodox method for this dish, the eggplant below is sauteed (with a somewhat large amount of oil) for easier preparation.

    1/2 of recipe:
    114 calories; 2.2 g protein; 7.1 g fat; 10.2 g carbohydrate; 6.9 g net carbs; 170 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 3.3 g fiber


    Petoraaru karei no shioyaki, kinomezu-gake / grilled petrale sole with young sansho leaf dressing

    The fresh citrus note of young sansho leaves brings out the sweet taste of petrale sole in season. A very pleasant, light dish.

    1/2 of recipe:
    116 calories; tomatoes in photo excluded); 22.3 g protein; 1.4 g fat; 1.5 g carbohydrate; 1.5 g net carbs; 250 mg sodium; 57 mg cholesterol; 0 g fiber


    Shincha gohan / steamed rice with first-flush green tea leaves

    In late spring through early summer, you see the expression "shincha" here and there in Japan. This is the first flush of sencha -- a type of everyday green tea that most Japanese would probably think of when they hear the word "ocha." While not a premium tea like gyokuro, which is steeped at much lower temperature to bring out its mellow, velvety note and texture, shincha is still highly prized for a somewhat light, young and clean "green" taste and aroma. It is available only for a limited time each year, and to take advantage of this seasonal tea, it is often used as an ingredient in food. This is just one of many examples.

    1/2 of recipe:
    276 calories; 5.5 g protein; 0.8 g fat; 58.8 g carbohydrate; 57.7 g net carbs; 55 mg sodium; 5 mg cholesterol; 1.1 g fiber


    Kanizu / crab dipping sauce

    Pleasant and refreshing. A common dipping sauce for boiled crab in Japan. It is basically a mild rice vinegar-based dressing that perfectly brings out the sweet flavor of our local Dungeness crab. Yuzu and lemon juice add a soft, zesty punch without overpowering the delicious crab itself.

    1/2 of recipe:
    15 calories; 0.1 g protein; 0 g fat; 2.8 g carbohydrate; 2.8 g net carbs; 35 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0 g fiber


    Tamago fuwafuwa / steamed egg soufle over broth

    This simple egg dish with a very descriptive name (fluffy egg) may not look like anything special today, but it is supposed to be the oldest egg dish on record in Japan, dating back to the early 17th century when the dish was served to the privileged few in power. It took some time to spread to lesser folks, but by the 19th century it was a popular dish, although still considered to be very special. Tamago fuwafuwa can be as plain as dashi and egg topped with pepper or some herbs. Below is slightly indulgent version featuring shimeji mushrooms, shrimp and sea scallops.

    1/2 of recipe:
    92 calories; 11.9 g protein; 2.9 g fat; 3.6 g carbohydrate; 3.0 net carbs; 267 mg sodium; 145.0 mg cholesterol; 0. 6g fiber


    Asari to asupara no pasuta / pasta with clams and asparagus

    Pairing ingredients that are in season is always a great idea. Juicy sliced asparagus is added to pasta alle vongole for a superb marriage of flavors.

    1/2 of recipe:
    489 calories; 25.9 g protein; 9.1 g fat; 72.3 g carbohydrate; 67.9 g net crabs; 663 mg sodium; 24.0 mg cholesterol; 4.4 g fiber


    Yakinasu-iri nyumen / warm somen noodles and grilled eggplant in broth

    A gentle nyumen -- somen noodles in warm broth – with a creamy texture and the toasty aroma of grilled eggplant. When prepared with fewer somen thin wheat noodles, this can be served as a pleasant side soup (like miso soup that accompanies other dishes).

    1/2 of recipe:
    414 calories; 18.6 g protein; 2.1 g fat; 79.6 g carbohydrate; 74.7 g net carbs; 555 mg sodium; 43.0 mg cholesterol; 4.9 g fiber


    Shiifuudo no remon karee / seafood lemon curry

    An easy seafood curry that goes well with either rice or couscous. Lemon adds a refreshing touch with its mild sourness. Great when temperatures start to climb in summer.

    1/4 of recipe:
    247 calories; 27.1 g protein; 5.6 g fat; 21.0 g carbohydrate; 17.1 g net carbs; 356 mg sodium; 67.0 mg cholesterol; 3.9 g fiber

    When serviced with 150 g steamed rice:
    499 calories per serving; 30.9 g protein; 6.1 g fat; 76.7 g carbohydrate; 72.3 g net carbs; 358 mg sodium; 67.0 mg cholesterol; 4.4 g fiber


    Kinshi uri no tosazu-ae / spaghetti squash in bonito flake infused sweetened rice vinegar dressing

    One of the standard Japanese dishes featuring kinshi uri (somen kabocha) spaghetti squash. Adding katsuobushi bonito flakes to sweetened rice vinegar gives a nice underlying punch to this dish. A tiny amount of mitsuba also accentuates the overall flavor. A small and refreshing side dish.

    1/2 of recipe:
    32 calories; 1.0 g protein; 0.1 g fat; 6.2 g carbohydrate; 5.2 g net carbs; 139 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce; 177 mg with regular soy sauce); 1.0 mg cholesterol; 1.0g  fiber


    Kaisen chukadon / Chinese-style seafood saute over steamed rice

    A tasty Japanese donburi of a classic Chinese dish. This is a reduced-sodium version of a previously posted chukadon recipe. It uses more vinegar than the original recipe and much less soy sauce and oyster sauce, but the sourness is milder... Why? Vinegar is boiled (in microwave) to get rid of excess sourness, leaving just enough sour taste and a sensation that mimics saltiness. This recipe also uses Shaoxing wine instead of sake to ensure a flavorful outcome. All in all, this is a very satisfying dish that sticks to your ribs.

    1/2 of recipe (when served with 150 g steamed rice):
    401 calories; 15.8 g protein; 2.8 g fat; 74.9 g carbohydrate; 71.4 g net carbs; 521 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce; 673 mg with regular soy sauce); 37 mg cholesterol; 3.5 g fiber


    Gobo to satsumaage, shimeji no donburi / burdock root, deep-fried fishcake and shimeji mushrooms over steamed rice

    This is a reduced-sodium version of my standard gobo donburi. By desalinating satsumage fishcake and replacing part of soy sauce with rice vinegar, you can enjoy a tasty donburi without worrying about getting too much sodium!

    1/2 of recipe (when served with 150 g steamed rice):
    353 calories; 11.2 g protein; 3.6g fat; 65.5 g carbohydrate; 62.8 g net carbs; 320 mg sodium (with 50% reduced sodium; 548 mg with regular soy sauce); 107 mg cholesterol; 2.7 g fiber


    Seiyo meshida no jon / jeon Korean piccata with lady fern fiddleheads

    Jeon Korean piccata is another easy way to enjoy the delicate harvest of the season!

    Whole recipe (when made with kogomi and served with dipping sauce made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce and diluted with water):
    82 calories; 3.8 g protein; 5.0 g fat; 5.6 g carbohydrate; 3.0 g net carbs; 75 mg sodium; 71 mg cholesterol; 2.6 g fiber


    Kogomi ostrich fern fiddleheads & seiyo meshida lady fern fiddleheads

    Kogomi fiddleheads of kusasotetsu ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris)

    As a juicy and succulent curled-up young shoot from the forest, kogomi ranks as one of my top sansai mountain/wild vegetables, yet it does not grow where we live (the nearest known places are British Columbia and Alaska). Local availability -- local in terms of being able to harvest and eat it on the same day -- is very important in order to be able to savor its quickly fading flavor and aroma. Like with many sansai, kogomi develops a bitter taste after some time. It stays fresh in the fridge for a week or so, but I would say no element other than texture remains after a few days.


    Seiyo meshida no gomaae / lady fern fiddleheads in sesame dressing

    One of the typical dishes for kogomi ostrich fern fiddleheads in Japan. The recipe below uses locally harvested lady fern fiddleheads. The refreshing taste and aroma of succulent and crispy fiddleheads blend wonderfully with the slightly sweet and toasty taste of sesame dressing. Using the freshest fiddleheads, ideally ones harvested the same day, is the key to bringing out the best taste.

    1/2 of recipe (when using kogomi):
    28 calories; 1.5 g protein; 1.3 g fat; 2.8 g carbohydrate; 1.1 g net carbs; 58 mg sodium (with 50% reduced sodium; 116 mg with regular soy sauce); 0 mg cholesterol; 1.7 g fiber


    Fuki to tofu no akadashi / red miso soup with Japanese butterbur and tofu

    This miso soup lets you enjoy the distinctive aroma of fuki. The addition of smooth kinugoshi soft tofu offers a pleasant contrast in textures.

    1/2 of recipe:
    49 calories; 4.0 g protein; 1.9 g fat; 3.6 g carbohydrate; 2.8 g net carbs;  254 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0.8 g fiber


    Ebi to kobashira no gorugonzoora soosu guratan / shrimp and bay scallop gratin with gorgonzola cheese

    One of my favorite mac & cheese – a great pairing of gorgonzola cheese and shrimp and scallops. The taste can run from rich to light depending on whether you use heavy cream, milk or soy milk, or a combination. Below is an indulgent dairy version for me, featuring heavy cream and milk, yet the green vegetable (yu choy sum) lightens up the aftertaste for a pleasant flavor overall. Great with wine!

    1/2 of recipe:
    548 calories; 29.4 g protein; 28.5 g fat; 38.6 g carbohydrate; 34.8 g net carbs; 408 mg sodium; 191 mg cholesterol; 3.8 g fiber


    Soba to warabi no ponzu sarada / buckwheat noodle and bracken salad with citrus soy sauce

    Warabi's succulent texture pairs well with soba buckwheat noodles and ponzujoyu. As warabi needs a bit of time to absorb flavor, it is cooked in dressing for the quick fix below.

    1/2 of recipe:
    251 calories; 8.3 g protein; 5.4 g fat; 43.4 g carbohydrate; 39.4 g net carbs; 223 mg sodium (with ponzujoyu made with 50% reduced sodium soy sauce); 0 mg cholesterol; 4.0 g fiber


    Warabi to eringi no iridofu / scrambled tofu with bracken and king oyster mushrooms

    Iridofu scrambled tofu is a wonderful way to showcase any in-season vegetable. Warabi bracken is no exception. As warabi is a great match with shrimp and mushrooms, the dish takes advantage of sakura ebi (for an underlying toasty note) and eringi mushrooms (for a hint of sourness). A delightful everyday meal companion.

    1/2 of recipe:
    128 calories; 10.0 g protein; 7.2 g fat; 6.9 g carbohydrate; 3.4 g net carbs; 169 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce, 198 mg with regular soy sauce); 61 mg cholesterol; 3.5 g fiber


    Fuki to gyuniku no Kankoku-fu nimono / braised Japanese butterbur and beef, Korean style

    A small amount garlic and sesame seeds in the beef marinade add a Korean touch to this common pairing of fuki Japanese butterbur and beef. Serrano pepper becomes quite mild after simmering, so use more if you prefer something spicy. Adapted from "Bejikorian [Veggie-Korean]" by Jeon Kyonghwa.

    1/2 of recipe:
    141 calories; 12.2 g protein; 6.7 g fat; 5.9 g carbohydrate; 4.7 g net carbs; 196 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce & shoyukoji made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce, 354 mg with regular soy sauce and shoyukoji made with regular soy sauce); 35 mg cholesterol; 1.2 g fiber


    Horenso to ebi, age no shiraae / spinach, shrimp and toasted thin deep-fried tofu in tofu dressing

    A small side dish with spinach. While spinach alone tastes good with shiraae tofu dressing, pairing it with other ingredients opens up an intriguing world of different textures and tastes. Here is an example with shrimp and usuage thin deep-fried tofu.

    1/2 of recipe:
    67 calories; 6.5 g protein; 3.4 g fat; 3.1 g carbohydrate; 2.0 g net carbs; 104 mg sodium; 26 mg cholesterol; 1.4 g fiber


    Iridori / chikuzen-ni / braised chicken with root vegetables

    A classic chicken and root vegetable dish. The softly sweet and salty taste makes it a great companion for plain rice and drinks. It is also a popular osechi dish for the New Year, and is great for bento and picnics.

    1/2 of recipe:
    213 calories; 12.8 g protein; 11.0 g fat; 14.7 g carbohydrate; 10.8 g net carbs; 243 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce & shoyukoji made with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce, 429 mg with regular soy sauce and shoyukoji made with regular soy sauce); 62 mg cholesterol; 3.9 g fiber


    Shoyukoji / soy sauce rice malt

    Shoyukoji is technically the base of soy sauce in the production process (see Kikkoman website). However, today the term is more commonly used to mean a mixture of shoyu soy sauce and koji rice malt, which has become popular in the last few years in Japan and among the Japanese community overseas. Just like shiokoji salted rice malt, shoyukoji is full of umami. In fact, its glutamic acid content is said to be 10 to 15 times of that of shiokoji.


    Shiitake to warabi no buriichiizu-yaki / shiitake and bracken with brie cheese

    Wow! A great little appetizer that really is something different. Goes well with both Western and Asian dishes.

    3 shiitake
    54 calories; 3.0 g protein; 4.1 g fat; 1.6 g carbohydrate; 0.3 g net carbs; 74 mg sodium; 11 mg cholesterol; 1.3 g fiber


    Ika-iri unohana / saute-simmered soybean pulp with calamari

    A gentle and comforting okara dish with the added touch of calamari.

    1/4 of recipe:
    57 calories; 3.9 g protein; 1.6 g fat; 5.7 g carbohydrate; 2.4 g net carbs; 97 mg sodium (with 50% reduced-sodium soy sauce; 152 mg with regular soy sauce); 32 mg cholesterol; 3.3 g fiber