Let’s learn how to enjoy and use herbs in our everyday lives! We will learn different uses of herbs, how to prepare and cook with them, as well as the benefits of different kinds of herbs. Come and enjoy a delightful cup of herb tea while practicing your English conversation skills at the same time.
ご興味がある方は（ firstname.lastname@example.org ）までご連絡下さい。
This week I will be holding an English only Vegan lunch. Let’s enjoy delicious vegan food while learning English at the same time!
ご興味がある方は（ email@example.com ）までご連絡下さい。
Datemaki (rolled omelet) is a traditional Japanese New Years food. It is quite similar to tamagoyaki which is every day home cooking. You can also find tamagoyaki and sushi restaurants where it is paced on top of rice and served as a type of sushi. While tamagoyaki is usually made in a fry pan, datemaki is baked.
There are a variety of different ways to make datemaki but I used a very simple recipe. This actually might have been the easiest of the recipes that we used for our osechi-ryori
1. You will first need to prepare the pan in which you will bake the datemaki. I used a square pan (8X8) but you can use whatever type of pan that you have but if you decided to use a larger pan then you should double this recipe. Using a piece of parchment paper and a stapler, create a box that is about 2 inches deep. Fasten the corners with a stapler. You will be pouring the datemaki mixture in here later on.
2. You basically just take all of these ingredients and put them into a mixer and mix until smooth. Simple!
1 sheet of hanpen (fish cake)
1 tbsp of cooking sake
4 tbsp of sugar
3. Pour the mixture into the pan lined with your parchment paper box and put it in the over at 400 F for about 25 minutes.
4. Remove egg from the paper and lay down on a bamboo mat rolling mat with the dark side facing up and roll into a scroll like shape. Make sure that you roll it as tightly as possible. **Make sure that you do this step while the egg is still hot.
5. Cover the bamboo wrapped omelet with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. I kept it in the wrapped in the refrigerator over night with no problem. When you are ready to serve it remove it from the wrap and cut it into slices (about 1 inch) and serve!
Kuri-kinton is a Japanese sweet dish made of pureed sweet potatoes and boiled chestnuts. It is traditionally eaten at New Years and symbolizes wealth perhaps because of its gold color. This year I decided to add sweetened pureed white bean for more variety. I then made the puree into a hershey-kiss like shape. This technique of twisting and shaping wagashi (traditional Japanese sweets) is known as “chakin-shibori”.
I also used maple syrup as a sweetener rather than white sugar to try to make the recipe a little bit more healthy.
While it may not be the most traditional style of making kuri-kinton it certainly was delicious. I used the left overs from the sweet potato and chestnut chakin-shibori and put it in a ramekin to make a more traditional kuri-kinton.
But today I will share a recipe for the less traditional style.
2 large sweet potatoes (boiled and mashed)
8-10 chestnuts (partially mashed)
1 cup of sweetened white bean paste
1. mix mashed sweet potatoes and chestnuts and sweeten with maple syrup (to taste)
2. have the two mixtures (a. sweetened sweet potatoes and chestnuts and b. sweeter white bean paste) ready and using a muslin cloth or plastic wrap, place 1/2 of a tablespoon of each mixture to the center of the cloth. You do not need to mix these two different mixtures as they look more interesting when their colors are kept separate.
3. wrap the cloth around the mixture and tighten it at the top by twisting it. Remove from cloth and place your wagashi on a serving dish. Repeat until you have used all of the mixture.
**You can be creative by making some plain white bean wagashi, some sweet potato and chestnut wagashi and some combinations of the two. You can also making indentations and interesting shapes on your wagashi by using a toothpick and pressing into the wagashi.