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


Kurumi daifuku / soft rice cake with sweetened azuki bean paste and walnuts

Toasted walnuts add a rich taste and crunch to a standard everyday daifuku rice cake. Turbinado in soft gyuhi mochi goes really well with walnuts and tsubuan crumbly azuki bean paste inside. Best on Day 1 for contrasting texture with walnuts, especially while still warm.

1 daifuku cake (1/4 of recipe):
130 calories; 2.8 g protein; 3.0 g fat; 23.4 g carbohydrate; 21.6 g net carbs; 1 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 1.8 g fiber; 145 mg potassium


Koyadofu no ageyaki to renkon no horenso-an / fried freeze-dried tofu and lotus root with spinach dashi sauce

Rehydrating and frying koyadofu freeze-dried tofu results in a chewy and juicy texture, making a good contrast with crunchy lotus root. A blanket of flavorful dashi sauce brings the two ingredients together while adding a green touch of spinach. Ginger provides a zesty counter-punch to the rich taste from oil used in preparation. A nice side dish for cool days and nights.

1/2 of recipe:
160 calories; 5.2 g protein; 11.9 g fat; 7.3 g carbohydrate; 6.3 g net carbs; 100 mg sodium; 0.1 mg cholesterol; 1.0 g fiber; 267 mg potassium


Osechi New Year's Day breakfast, 2019

Once again this year, a smallish, basic lineup of osechi perfect for a breakfast for two.

Finding good fish is always a challenge in our town despite its location on the seacoast. Yet this year it was a case where a series of problems can lead to an amazing solution. Earlier in December following several days of power outage, we made grilled kasuzuke salmon out of defrosted salted salmon fillets, and it struck me that the taste of the fish, which was a bit dry due to my mistakenly grilling it slightly too long, would probably go really well in ozoni soup. Tom agreed that the taste would be a great match, and we bought a fillet of sockeye salmon for the ozoni. As it was previously frozen, I salted the fillet to extract excess moisture from the flesh and marinated it in sakekasu sake lees for two nights while preparing our ozoni to the semi-final flavoring stage. On December 30th, grilled kasuzuke salmon was added to the soup, which was simmered to blend the flavors, chilled overnight, and simmered again with the last flavor adjustment on the 31st. And after all that, we were rewarded with one of our most successful ozoni ever on the January 1st.