No Picture
General Article

Sushi in Vancouver

Sushi in Vancouver Vancouver is a west coast town. Like many other cities on the west coast of North America, Vancouver has a large Japanese population. Japanese immigration has played a large role in the history of the city, and with this immigration has come a fusion of Canadian and Japanese culture. Without a doubt, Sushi is quite a popular food in North America. While it is now pretty much ubiquitous, even staple, in most cities on the continent the Sushi we have come to adore has its roots on the west coast, particularly in Los Angeles and Vancouver. The well known California roll and the B.C roll play homage to this history. As one would expect, Vancouver has a wide variety of excellent sushi restaurants. These restaurants all have an authentic feel, as they use fresh ingredients from the Pacific and traditional Japanese recipes. Bistro Sakana Japanese Restaurant – 1123 Mainland St Bistro Sakana is a Sushi Bar located in the trendy Yaletown district of Vancouver. While the Sushi Chefs use only the freshest ingredients, and every sushi roll ordered is delicately hand made it still is not an expensive restaurant! Entrees start at $8 and go up from there. One particular dish to order is the $11 Super 7. This allows you to sample everything they have to offer on one plate. In addition, they have a full selection of beers, wines, and sake from their bar. Miko Sushi Japanese Restaurant – 1335 Robson St Miko Sushi is one of those places that you might pass by and think nothing of it. However, if you were to step inside you would find a place that has been called one of the best Japanese restaurants in Canada, and is nearly universally lauded by every restaurant critic. The dishes at Miko Sushi are small, and a bit more expensive than other places but once you take your first bite you’ll remember why you paid the extra money. ShuRaku Sake Bar – 833 Granville St ShuRaku Sake Bar is a restaurant and lounge on the Granville Strip near many of the nightclubs and theaters. They offer elegantly prepared Sushi, Sashimi, and other Japanese culinary delights. While you will notice above average prices, the thoughtfulness of the food’s presentation more than makes up for it. They also have an excellent selection of Sake, which is a Japanese liquor that tastes somewhat similar to warm vodka and green tea. While Vancouver has many excellent Sushi restaurants, as the three examples have highlighted, there are many establishments which are less than exemplary. Remember that Sushi is raw fish and utmost care must be taken to ensure that it is prepared in a safe and hygienic fashion.…

No Picture
General Article

Three Japanese Dishes to Try – Cold Ramen, Okonomiyaki and Takoyaki

Three Japanese Dishes to Try – Cold Ramen, Okonomiyaki and Takoyaki Sukiyaki, teriyaki, tempura, and sushi are only some of the many foods eaten in Japan. In this article, I would like to suggest three Japanese dishes for you to try. I love these dishes, but I had never heard of them before visiting Japan. 1. Cold ramen Cold ramen is served in restaurants from May through September. Ramen is boiled and then chilled in cold water. The ramen is then poured into a bowl without any broth. Sometimes the ramen is served over ice cubes or with a few ice cubes in it. A soy-sauce based or sesame seed sauce is generally used for the cold ramen and a dash of hot Japanese mustard is on the side of the bowl to mix in with the ramen. The ramen is then covered with cold toppings. Cucumbers, eggs, and ham or pork are the most common. They are served cut in long strips, but you can also find other toppings on your cold ramen. 2. Okonomiyaki Okonomiyaki is a giant Japanese pancake, but this unique pancake is not to be confused with the pancakes we eat for breakfast in the states. In Japanese, okonomi means what you like and yaki means grilled. Okonomiyaki has two parts: the batter and the ingredients added to it. The batter includes eggs, flour, and shredded cabbage. The ingredients added to the batter vary widely and can be one or more of the following: pork, octopus, squid, shrimp, clams, scallops, oysters, vegetables, natto, kimchi, mochi, and cheese. While okonomiyaki is made and eaten at home, eating it in restaurants is far more common. Some restaurants serve a standard okonomiyaki. That is, the table server brings you a plate with an okonomiyaki on it, but most Japanese prefer to eat their okonomiyaki in restaurants specializing in it, restaurants where you cook it yourself. The server will bring you the batter and the ingredients. You can mix the batter and add the ingredients, cooking at your table on a hot grill in the middle of your table. You can cook, play with, and eat your okonomiyaki. 3. Takoyaki The word takoyaki uses the same yaki as you can find in okonomiyaki and many other Japanese foods. If you look yaki up in a Japanese to English dictionary, you will find it defined as roast (for pork), broil (for fish), grill (for chicken), bake (for bread), and do (for meat, fish, and chicken) as well as a host of other definitions. Like okonomiyaki, takoyaki also uses a batter. Octopus and a few minor ingredients are mixed into the batter. The batter is then poured into a mold that cooks the batter into small balls while evenly heating them. You could think of takoyaki as miniature octopus muffins, although they are a little heavy to be muffins. Takoyaki, unlike the okonomiyaki and cold ramen, is not a meal, but a snack. You will often find it sold at festivals. Poorly cooked takoyaki is heavy, doughy, and sits in your stomach like lead. Properly cooked, the hot dumpling tastes of octopus and a bread-like dough covered with a thick soy sauce like sauce. As Japanese food continues to disseminate around the globe, you are more likely to find these three tasty foods. I recommend that you try each of them. If you cannot find any of the three where you live, you might want to think of coming to Japan for a food trip.…

No Picture
General Article

Do Your Sushi Set a Favor – Prepare Your Sushi Correctly!

Do Your Sushi Set a Favor – Prepare Your Sushi Correctly! The steps involved in rolling up a delicious sushi roll are surprisingly straightforward even for the uninitiated. Although you might balk a bit at the idea of getting your hands dirty with a seaweed wrap and fresh seafood, I assure you that anyone can do this with just a little practice. With that said, let’s dig in to some simple steps that you can take to create a great sushi to pair with any number of available sushi sets: Perhaps the most important element in a quality sushi is the rice, itself. Rice is highly-regarded in Japanese culture as a result of historical food shortages and other factors. As a result, an authentic sushi experience requires that you treat the rice with respect, preparing it well. You’ll want to run the rice through a cold water wash about 5 or 6 times in order to reduce the starch content, making it much easier to work with later on. The next step is to cook the rice, and once you’re done with this it’s time to transfer it to a wooden container, ideally using a wooden spoon. Wood is a great material to use because of its interaction with moisture content in the rice. Speaking of moisture content, be sure to wrap a damp cloth over the top of the bowl in order to retain some of that all-important water! The next important element is the “Nori,” or seaweed wrap that eventually will contain all the delicious fillings in your sushi rolls. Toasting the Nori for a few minutes over a small flame will really bring out the aroma in the seaweed as well as making it easier to serve on a typical sushi set without leaving a sticky mess. Roll out the toasted Nori, pop in your fillings, and seal it around in a completed roll. Leaving an extra half inch will really help create a tight seal on the roll. Last, create a light layer outside of the seaweed with the cooked rice. It will be a little sticky at this point, which is perfect for getting it to remain attached to the Nori. The last step is to simply cut the sushi into rolls. Although you can cut the sushi into any size roll you like, please be sure to use a very sharp knife at this stage. This will cut down on any “sawing” motion that you need to use on the roll. The less sawing you have to do, the less chance there is of totally ruining the roll as it comes apart on your cutting board! There you have it, a few simple steps to creating a wonderful sushi to pair with that new sushi making set!…

No Picture
General Article

Keep the Flame Burning – Dating After You’re Married

Keep the Flame Burning – Dating After You’re Married Why? Because dating is a fun way to keep the flame burning in your relationship, long after you thought your dating days were over. Dating your partner after helps to strengthen your relationship and build a lasting marriage. Sadly these days, too many marriages end in divorce. We lose the connection and everything else seems more important. The trouble is that over time, we can easily begin to take each other for granted. And like a garden that grows wild without attention, your relationship begins to lose its blossom. However, if you’re willing to make the effort, if you will invest the time and care into it, you can make your relationship bloom once again. So how can you do this? The answer is simple, by spending time together in mutually enjoyable activities or at social events in which you both share an interest. In other words, by dating again. To get started, you should you both choose a night that you know you’ll be able to make. Put it on your calendar and stick to it. Select something that you can both do together and that will be great fun. Perhaps you could take a sushi-making class together or go to a special event such as a concert or a film premiere. Anything that gets you out of the house and doing something together is a great place to start. It doesn’t have to be extravagant, although when it’s your turn to think up a date, your partner would certainly appreciate something exclusive and special. Perhaps they have a favourite chef and you could book a table at their restaurant. Maybe they’ve always wanted to experience the ballet or have a picnic and see an opera performed at Glyndebourne. Whatever it is, it’s not just about the money that you spend; it’s really the thought that counts. So think up some ideas, jot them down and share them with your loved one. Make the most of the time you have together and don’t end up sitting in front of the telly night after night. Make a commitment to spend one evening a month or even one evening a week going out on a date together. You’ll have forgotten how much fun it is to relax and unwind with your best half. Don’t forget, you don’t have to just do things you’ve done before. Why not try things that are completely new to you both. Keep the fire burning! Whether you’re young or old, single, engaged or married, if you want to enjoy a long and successful relationship, why not get our free e-guide ‘Now You’ve Got Her, Keep Her!’ by visiting Your London Wedding Planner.…

No Picture
General Article

What to Eat During Pregnancy?

What to Eat During Pregnancy? A pregnant woman need calories, protein, vitamins, minerals, and water all increase during pregnancy. With the exception of iron for many women, a careful selection of food can and should provide the additional calories and nutrients required. For healthy women, no special dietary supplements or foods are needed to insure adequate nutrition. What is needed is a diet that includes: Sufficient calories to gain weight at an appropriate rate The assortment of foods recommended in the MyPyramid Adequate intake of all essential nutrients Sufficient fluid (eleven to twelve cups per day) A healthy dose of EPA and DHA (300 mg daily) Enough fiber (twenty-eight grams daily) No salt restriction No alcohol Foods that you enjoy and consume at pleasant mealtimes Every diet is unique No two women have exactly the same need for calories. That’s because caloric need during pregnancy is based on an individual’s physical activity level, current weight, muscle and fat mass, metabolic rate, and the stage of pregnancy. That makes it impossible to state with certainty a specific number of additional calories needed by individual pregnant women. The best way to judge the adequacy of caloric intake is by assessing weight gain. When you consume more calories than you use up, you gain weight. When your caloric intake is lower than your body’s need for calories, you lose it. In the best of all worlds, pregnant women would consume sufficient calories to consistently and gradually gain weight. The amount of weight gain that is right for pregnancy depends on pre pregnancy weight and whether more than one baby is expected. Benefits: If you are eating a healthy diet and gaining weight at the recommended rate, you really don’t need to worry about calories. If your weight fluctuates a bit from day to day, you shouldn’t worry about that, either. Appetite and food intake levels during pregnancy come and go like the tide, only not as regularly. Good rates of weight gain often result when women eat when they are hungry and stop eating when they begin to feel full. Because this method doesn’t work for all women, it may be necessary to monitor your weight gain to determine whether you are getting an adequate amount of calories.…

No Picture
General Article

How to Make Sushi Rice

How to Make Sushi Rice Sushi is Japan’s answer to the sandwich, small bites of food appropriate for any number of occasions. It has now become popular all around the world and is ideal for parties, lunchtime snacks, picnics, and celebrations. It is extremely adaptable to both casual or formal occasions. Today, you will just as likely see it prepared with traditional Japanese ingredients as fusion style which incorporates unique ingredients from a variety of cultures. You will achieve best results when making sushi rice if you use short grain rice as it gets sticky as it’s cooked. Long grain rice alternatively, gets drier as it’s cooked so it won’t stick together as required when assembling all the sushi components. When boiling rice in a saucepan over direct heat you need to cook at least 1 cup of rice to get a good result for making sushi. A cup of rice will make about 1 pound of cooked rice which equates to about 6 thin rolls (6-8 pieces per roll), enough to serve 4 people as an appetizer. You will need: 1 cup short grain rice 1 1/4 cup water 2 tablespoons rice vinegar 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt First, wash the rice thoroughly, changing the water several times until it runs clear. When all the excess starch and impurities have been rinsed away, let the rice drain in a colander for 30 minutes to one hour. Next, place the rice in a heavy saucepan, add water and place over high heat. Bring the water to a boil, uncovered. Once the water starts to boil, turn the heat down and simmer on low for about 15 minutes, or until almost all the water has been absorbed. Lightly turn the rice over from bottom to top with a spatula and continue to simmer, covered, for about another minute. Remove from the heat and let the rice stand, covered, for ten or fifteen minutes. Alternatively, use a rice cooker to cook the rice and then let it stand afterwords. While the rice is cooking, mix the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt together in a small bowl or saucepan. Heat the mixture either in a microwave or on the stove just until sugar is dissolved. Let cool to room temperature. Transfer the hot rice to a shallow, non-metal bowl. Gradually fold in the vinegar mixture until the rice is just moist and starts to stick together. You may have leftover vinegar mixture. Continue to use a gentle folding motion to thoroughly coat each grain of rice with the mixture. Keep the rice covered with a damp cloth at room temperature until ready to use. Allow to cool to room temperature before using in your favorite sushi recipe. Do not refrigerate. Once you have mastered this simple technique you will be able to prepare any of a number of healthful, tasty, nutritional sushi recipes with a minimum of fuss. The ingredients can be varied to cater to a wide variety of tastes and dietary restrictions. Sushi is not only easy, but fun to make at home. For entertaining, consider offering your guests a variety of fillings to make their own hand-rolled sushi for themselves. Bon appetite!…

No Picture
General Article

How To Make A Smoked Salmon Roll With Sesame Toasted Seeds on Top

How To Make A Smoked Salmon Roll With Sesame Toasted Seeds on Top Place the sushi mat inside of the gallon sized plastic freezer bag, this ensures that the sushi rice does not become embedded into the mat, and is easy to clean up when you make sushi from home. We want this to be simple to prepare, but look extravagant, so the less work, the better. Lay the Nori seaweed square on top of the plastic covered sushi roll mat. Wet your hands thoroughly. Add a handful of prepared sushi rice in the middle of the Nori and gently spread the rice out to the edges. Press down gently on the rice and flip the Nori over so that the rice side is down. Make sure to have the rest of your ingredients out and ready for this step. Lay the A�” by A�” slice of cream cheese to the Nori side of the sushi roll. I generally cut the cream cheese to about 75% of the length of the Nori sheet and then stretch it out to the edges. This adds an amazing creamy texture to the salty and savory smoked salmon. I know that you will agree that this is easily the best sushi recipe to use for salmon sushi available to make sushi at home. Next we are going to add the salmon to our Salmon sushi roll recipe, doubling the thin strip up to add extra salmon in the middle of the roll. Make sure that there is a good balance of smoked salmon and cream cheese in each bite of the Salmon sushi roll. I love the flavor combination provided by including both smoked salmon and cream cheese in a dish. It definitely makes for the best sushi on earth. Sprinkle the fresh cut crisp green onions across the length of the Nori sheet next to the cream cheese and smoked salmon combination. The aroma and crispiness of these onions adds a fresh flavor to the sushi roll that cannot be beat. The spiciness of the roll increases as you add more crisp green onions, so don’t overdo it. Roll the sushi mat over the roll, away from you, creating a nice seal with the rice, and press down gently. You want a tight, firm roll as it adds to the appearance, and the ease of eating for this roll. Roll it again to ensure that it is fully sealed. Sprinkle sesame seeds across the top of the sushi rice, but don’t overdo it! Sesame seeds are potent and can dominate the flavor of this sushi roll. Using a wet serrated knife, cut the Salmon sushi roll in half once, then each of those pieces in half again, and again until there are eight equal pieces of this delicious cooked sushi roll. Make sure to wipe the knife off between cuts so that the knife does not stick to the rice or Nori, and you’re your creation. Place all of the sushi roll pieces onto a square or decorative plate in an ornate pattern. The patterns that you can create with this are endless. The coloring of this sushi dish requires nothing more than appropriate and balanced placement on a classic black plate. The beauty of this roll stands alone.…