Shabu Shabu: しゃぶしゃぶ

しゃぶしゃぶ: shabu shabu, a style of hotpot dish. The name comes from the sound the ingredients make swishing in the pot. In Okinawa, there are a few places to try shabu shabu dining. This weekend, we found an amazing place up north. Yanbaru Dining Churashima Kitchen (YANBARU DINING 美ら島キッチン) in Motobu. It is mixed in with … Continue reading Shabu Shabu: しゃぶしゃぶ

Salmon “Jerky”: 鮭冬葉

Yesterday, my (Okinawan) friend brought something called "sake toba" 鮭冬葉 (or 鮭とば) that she found at the market (I believe Makishi in Naha) to our BBQ party. Sake 鮭 means salmon, and toba 冬葉 means swarm or flock in Ainu, an ethnic group indigenous to Hokkaido area. Toba is made up of the kanji for "winter" and … Continue reading Salmon “Jerky”: 鮭冬葉

Snow Monkeys and Nabe: 猿と鍋

猿 saru means "monkey." 野猿  yaen means wild monkey, meaning the wild Japanese macaque. After the New Year in January, I took a short trip to Yamanouchi (山ノ内) in Nagano prefecture (長野県) to see the snow monkeys at Jigokudani onsen 地獄谷温泉 (translation: hell valley hot springs) and yaen-kouen 野猿公苑 (wild monkey park). We stayed at … Continue reading Snow Monkeys and Nabe: 猿と鍋

Hokkaido Uoman: 北海道魚萬

北海道: Hokkaido Yesterday for lunch we went to a newly built complex made up of mostly some restaurants in Urasoe. We wanted to try this izakaya type place, called Hokkaido Uoman, which serves Hokkaido foods; it is open 24 hours, and although they have morning and lunch specials, you can order off the grand menu any time. … Continue reading Hokkaido Uoman: 北海道魚萬