Their products are inspired by Japan and are most importantly "Made in Japan"!
I finally met a US based company who is super passionate about Japan: "Tatcha".
Their products are inspired by Japan and are most importantly "Made in Japan"!
While catching up on my Japanese TV episodes, I ran into 1 which concentrated on Japan's tomato industry. Japanese tomatoes (and vegetables in general) are very high in quality where ever you go. The colour, shape, shine and taste turns out to be perfect even without "picking" at the supermarket. How do they do this? This TV program asked Italian tomato experts to discover the "How" and here's what they found:
Super detail oriented - right?
But this careful Japanese detail results in great customer experience throughout the country. Customers know that they can trust Japanese tomatoes. I must say that this high expectation from customers can result in spoiled customers and in extreme negative comments if the products are not up to par, but this helps in a healthy competition! This may be why Japanese products are so high in quality. Passion coming from suppliers and trust coming from consumers..
More "Japanese quality" series comin' up! Let me know if you have a specific product/service you would like to learn more about in terms of quality.
Kinokuniya in Japantown, San Francisco is my saviour!
Small books, large books, magazines, origami and all sorts of little goodies.
I go here on a monthly basis to pick my favourite Japanese fashion magazines. I have a subscription with them - so they e-mail me when the most recent publication is delivered.
The photograph above is one of Japanese travel books. The ones above are for LA and San Francisco.
Colourful, aren't they?
Japanese magazines contain a lot of information. Blurbs, comments, images, you name it!
Additionally, the Japanese language itself can portray information more than English given it's Kanji characters.
The photograph below shows bilingual Japanese books, mostly on food.
Have you read any of them?
Don't forget to enter my first ever giveaway here!
In Japan, "Donburi" is what we call a bowl of rice with goodies on top, it could be shortened to "-Don" too.
If it's Chicken on a bed of rice, we could say "Chicken-Don".
With just 4 ingredients, here's what I whipped up for dinner. It took less than 15 minutes.
I promise - it's going to turn out delicious!
This is not a *special* scene in Tokyo, Japan. This is very normal, actually!
You see employees line up to welcome customers in the morning just as the mall opens.
You also see the same when the malls are closing.
If you pass by, employees will bow and say "Irasshaimase" (welcome!), or "Arigatou Gozaimashita" (thank you!).
This is your chance to feel like someone important!
Photo taken@Queens Square, Minato Mirai, Yokohama, Japan
People, people and more people. My personal definition of Shibuya, a ward in Tokyo.
Known to be filled with lots of young people, Shibuya is a very crowded city from morning to night. Also popular for the "Hachi-ko" dog by the station, and the "Scramble crossing" (in the pic above). Both of these iconic locations are right by Shibuya station exits.
If you like to shop or want to take a look at the young trendy clothes in Tokyo, you might want to stop at 109, a popular shopping mall full of different types of styles & wardrobes. You'll experience a very different mall atmosphere there.
There are lots and lots of restaurants, cafes, bars and fast foods in Shibuya, like any other ward in Tokyo. Quite dense though. I highly recommend the standing sushi bar in the "Center-gai", a.k.a Center Street. Super casual, affordable but delicious & worthy.
Another recommendation is LoFT, a shop spanning 7 floors with anything from beauty goods, travel goods to pens and paper. If you are looking for gifts and good quality goodies, you must visit!
If you go to Shibuya, be prepared to walk! Through the alleys, through the streets....You'll forget the time passing by since there is so much to experience and look at! If you want to see all the lights, young vibe and be surrounded by lots and lots of people, this is a place you must visit :)
Let me know if you have any recommendations in Shibuya!
I've always wanted to share the touching, emotional and beautiful Japanese lyrics to my friends in the US.
I covered one of my favourite songs, originally sang by Ai, called "Story". Ai also sang an English version of this for the super popular movie "Big Hero 6"!
You're not alone, I'm by your side
Teriyaki Chicken is not an American dish!
"Teriyaki" is a way of cooking in japan: To grill a piece of protein (whether it be chicken or fish) with the sweet soy sauce. It has been a popular way of cooking in Japan since centuries ago; for example in the Meiji period (1800s), Teriyaki fish was very popular as it went perfectly with Japanese sake. These dishes then became popular in the army as well; they started to get packed in cans so that it could be saved for longer periods of time during the war.
jpinsider did this....
I served this dish to go with some drinks at a home party. The great thing about this dish is that I was able to prepare it the morning of the party so all I had to do when I got home was to grill it! The sauce had soaked in the meat by then - delicious!
You can use this sauce with fish, veggies, tofu and any type of ingredient you can think of.
You can make this in advance and take it for lunch with you for a savoury satisfying meal. The possibilities are endless!
Ingredients: (serves 2-4 people)
Full of iron, fiber, calcium and VItamin A.
It's a superfood which will help us for a better blood flow, healthier skin and a superb intestine!
What is it?
It's a brown sea vegetable, much like seaweed but chewy.
For those of you who have not had a taste of it, and those of you who have, this recipe is a super-easy-must-try. All you do is throw in the following ingredients into your rice cooker. It'll turn into a savoury, warm Japanese rice dish.
Delicious vegan thumbprint cookies I stole from WholeFoods.
As always, I made my Japanese-y adjustments so you may find my recipe less sweet. But hey, you taste more of the natural ingredients - isn't that better?
I'm not vegan but these cookies are too cute and delicious looking not to try!
It took me 5 minutes to make (excluding the oven time)....And the taste?
Nutty, chewy, goodness.
What you need (makes 15 cookies):
Kamaboko is a popular way to eat pureed fish in Japan. They are just like fish cakes, fish jelly (though that may sound a little gross). They have a rubbery texture and the taste of fish can be very appetizing. Its history can go back to the 1000AD, when they were treated as luxury items (seafood was a luxury item in general) - thus are included in Osechi for New Years.
There are different ways you can eat this: Raw, steamed, grilled, baked....I ate mine raw this morning w/ some Japanese mayo, rice, miso soup and some entree. Mmmm!
In Japan, they can be served for breakfast, lunch or dinner as a super mini side dish (more like serving pickles).
Give it a try when you visit a Japanese supermarket next time!
Throwback to my first ever unboxing video which I posted last year in March.
I still use this Nikon Coolpix P340 for all my pictures used on my blog. Loving it still! ...But is it time for an upgrade?
Why I love this camera:
Tokyo Skytree is the tallest structure in Japan, and is the 2nd tallest structure in the world (as of Jan 11, 2015)!
Not only is the architecture impressive - it's a fun place to go since there are so many shops & restaurants.
Check out my past article for the most important recommendation I discovered :)
Probably the most simple Carbonara recipe you'll ever find - and it's healthy, light (believe it or not), tasty and approved by my boyfriend!
Japanese people LOVE their Italian food. Tokyo has Italian restaurants all over! They are all quite delicious too. This means that we (Japanese) are very picky with pasta. We're not used to the heavy homestyle Italian dishes though, we're used to the more light, healthy kind (which is the version served in Japan).
All you need is (for 1-2):
Chocolate chip panko cookies!
I have never thought about using panko for a dessert but this turned out to be super simple to make and delicious!
They are such great crunchy sweet cookies. I got great feedback from the people I shared it with at my work :)
Since I don't like my desserts too sweet, this recipe might be not sweet enough for you. In that case, just add some more sugar. But hey, why not lessen the sweetness of these cookies and enjoy it with a nice hot sweet drink instead?
Here's how you can make it today, using all the panko leftovers.
What you need:
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