Monday, July 31, 2017

Chickpea and Chicken Curry

This can also be made without chicken.

Heat in a frying pan:

1 T olive oil


1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
200-300 gm minced chicken

Stir fry and break up the chicken. As that cooks, add:

1 T curry powder
1 t chili powder

When chicken is cooked, add:

½ C water
½ t bouillon powder
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Stir around about, turn down fire and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until almost all the water has evaporated. Taste and then add salt and pepper. Be careful, as both bouillon and the chickpeas are already salty.

Serve over rice.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Simple Eggplant Salad

Mix together in a bowl:

1 t soy sauce
1 t apple cider vinegar
1 T olive oil
1 t lemon juice
1 t sesame oil
¼-½ t tobanjan (Chinese chili spice)
1 small clove garlic, finely minced (oroshi)
(1 t tahini)
½-1 t sugar, to taste
salt to taste


1 steamed Japanese eggplant, chopped

Chill and serve. Top with sesame seeds.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Kimchi Chicken

Slice thinly into bite-sized pieces:

1 large chicken breast (350 grams or so)

Marinate for 30 minutes in:

1 T sake
1 T cornstarch

Heat in a frying pan:

1-2 t sesame oil

When fragrant, add:

½ onion, sliced

Stir fry until the outside of the chicken becomes whitish, turn fire to low and add:

1 clove garlic, slivered

Stir fry gently until chicken is mostly cooked. Add:

200 grams chopped cabbage (or whatever)

Stir fry until soft. Add:

200 grams kimchi

Stir fry over a low fire for 3-5 minutes. Season with salt (and pepper), as needed. Serve over rice. Top with:

Chopped green onions (negi)

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Chocolate Bread

Put in bread maker in this order:

180ml water
1 medium egg (not a big one)
2 T brown sugar
½ t salt
2 T milk powder
40 gm butter
250 gm bread flour
50 gm whole wheat flour

Make a well in the center of the flour and pour in:

¾ t dry yeast

Set bread machine to "sweet bread" cycle. When the buzzer sounds, add:

85 gm frozen chocolate chips (frozen is the key)
40 gm chopped walnuts

When done, remove the pan from the machine and leave it for about 3 minutes. Then gently tap the bread out of the pan. Cool on a wire rack. Slice gently.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Beef and Spinach Pasta

Grated parmesan would have been better, but I used what I had: sliced parmesan.

2 cloves garlic


¼-½ C shiitake or other mushrooms

In a frying pan, heat:

1 T olive oil

When warm, add:

200-300 grams thinly slice beef, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 bay leaf

As you stir fry that, sprinkle on:

½ t oregano
salt and pepper

When the meat is mostly cooked, add:

about 1¾ C crushed tomatoes

Stir-fry for a minute over a low fire until mixed in. 

While the sauce simmers, cook noodles al dente (until they are ever-so-slightly still a bit hard in the middle). Drain and briefly rinse.

Put noodles in the pan and mix into sauce, along with:

½-1 C fresh spinach leaves
½-1 C fresh basil leaves

Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

Stir until well mixed. Top with freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Apple Crumble

Preheat oven to 190ºC (375ºF).

Wash, core, (peel, if the apple skins are gross), and slice:

2-3 apples

Place apples in a bowl, and toss thoroughly with:

1 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ t finely grated lemon rind
a couple sprinkles cinnamon

Grease a baking dish with butter, spread the apples in the dish, and place in the oven.

Now make the topping.

Place in a bowl:

½ C old fashioned oats
scant ¼ C light brown sugar
3 T flour
3 T sliced butter

Mix with fingers until the butter is mixed in and the topping comes together into clumps.

Take the pan out of the oven, sprinkle the topping on, and put it back in the oven. Bake until the topping is browned and crispy, about 30-40 minutes.

Sunday, January 1, 2017


Someone asked me where I keep my bulk-buy goods in my small Japanese kitchen. There is a shelf under my kitchen/dining room table where, as you can see, I keep containers of whole wheat flour, bread flour, oats, rice, open bags of tortilla chips (and cereal, if we have it), and milk powder. The dish cupboard has pull-out shelves for baking items and spices.  

There are trash cans for the different categories of trash:  burnable, plastic, and cans and bottles. If I have overflow from those small cans, there are large covered cans are in the garage. Beside them are labeled drawers for cooking utensils, baking utensils, towels, cloths, extra spices, etc. In a big closet in another room, I have snap-shut trash cans where I keep the wholesale bags of flour, etc. 

Although this kitchen is much smaller, it is way more convenient.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Simple Whole-wheat Crepes

Whisk in a bowl or blend in a blender:

2 eggs
1 C milk
⅓ C whole wheat flour
⅓ C all-purpose white flour
1½ T melted butter
a pinch salt

When batter is smooth, very lightly oil a nonstick frying pan, and place it over a medium-low flame. Put a tiny piece of butter in the middle of the pan. When it bubbles, the pan is hot enough to start making your crepes.

Use a ladle to scoop out enough batter to cover the bottom of your pan with a thin layer. Turn your pan to spread the batter around. The thinner, the better.

Cook until they look a little dry, and the edges have started to turn golden brown. Carefully use your spatula to loosen the edges, then flip it. You might need to use your (clean, dry) hands. 

After about 30 seconds, when pretty and golden on the bottom, carefully slide it out onto a plate or platter, then pour in the next batch of batter. Repeat until you're out of batter.

Serve with anything you like:

Cooked apples, cinnamon (basically applesauce)
Greek yogurt with fruit

Friday, September 23, 2016

Edamame Hummus

Mix together in a blender or food processor:

1-2 T tahini (sesame paste, or nerigoma in Japan)
1 T water
2 T lemon juice
1-2 cloves garlic
¼ t salt
(¼-½ t wasabi - powder or paste)
1 T olive oil
1½ C edamame

Adjust seasoning as you like. You could use cumin instead of wasabi, if you prefer, for a more traditional hummus. 

Serve with corn chips.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Simple Fajitas

Place in a plastic bag and mix around:

½ t ground cumin
½ t chili powder
¼ t salt
¼ t pepper
1-2 t freshly squeezed lemon juice
1-2 cloves finely minced garlic
1-2 t olive oil

Add to the bag:

8 chicken tenders, with gristle removed

Close the bag, then move and squeeze the tenders around to cover all of them with the marinade as evenly as you can. Set aside for 30 minutes or longer.


1 onion
½ red pepper
½ yellow pepper

Heat in a heavy frying pan:

1 T olive oil

When hot, turn the fire down to medium and line up the tenders in the pan. Cook until lightly browned on one side, turn and cook the other side. Put them on a plate when they're done and set them aside.

Add a teaspoon more oil to the pan, if necessary, and cook the onion and pepper slices, stirring until they are all heated through, then let them get a little browned by leaving them without stirring for a minute or so. Be careful not to burn them. Put them on a plate when they're done.

Now you need a clean frying pan.

Place a clean pan over a medium flame. When warm, add and cook for about 30 seconds on each side until little brown spots appear:

8 tortillas

When you turn each one to its second side, place on top:

a slice of cheddar cheese or 2 T grated cheese

Lay the tortillas cheese side up on plates, and divide all the ingredients evenly between them.

Also add:

1 small avocado, sliced
lettuce leaves, washed and dried

Serve with:

Sliced jalapeños