Kansha: Vegetarian Cooking in Japan

Let me start by saying that I am not a vegetarian, but I am very interested in vegan and vegetarian cooking.  I actually eat a lot of meat and it’s probably why this book interested me so much in the first place.

Kansha was written by the Japanese food specialist Elizabeth Andoh  and it is my first vegetarian cookbook.   Washoku, her previous book, dealt with fish and meat.

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Kaeru Coffee Roastery

Kaeru is the word for “frog” in Japanese and it’s also the name of a great little coffee shop in Okayama City. A local English teacher recommended this coffee shop, so I jumped on my bicycle and rode all the way from Kurashiki just to try it.

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Bankoku Coffee: a Coffee Roaster in Okayama

I found Bankoku coffee roaster by pure luck.  I parked my car to visit a furniture shop and I saw the bright green coffee sign in the distance.

My curiosity was rewarded by a fragrant and well stocked coffee roasting shop, the type of shop I had been dreaming about since I arrived in Japan.

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Lucky Peach #1 and Ivan Ramen

When I heard that David Chang,  the mastermind of Momofuku restaurant,  created a magazine about ramen, I ordered it right away  and awaited my copy of Lucky Peach like a kid waiting for Santa Claus.

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Kuishinbo: Offal Gluttony in Tsuyama.

I don’t know why, but Tsuyama in Northern Okayama Prefecture is the capital of horumon fried udon. It’s quite common for Japanese cities to build their reputation on a particular specialty,  but it takes some gusto to build this fame cooking offals or as some might call it the “discarded bits”.

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Zakuro: Mini Kaiseiki in Nagato

The last time I went to Nagato in Yamaguchi Prefecture, I ate a very ordinary meal in a mall. This time around, my wife reserved at Zakuro , a small restaurant own by a Brazilian woman and her Japanese husband.

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Café Tikal

I have a feeling that a number of great coffee shop in Japan are often located in the most unlikely places and Cafe Tikal is no exception to the rule.

This friendly coffee shop is hidden behind the  gate of the Kogawa family residence in the castle town of Hagi in Yamaguchi Prefecture.

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Drinking History at Café de l’Ambre

The prevalent idea in the coffee drinking world is that fresher is  better. I was proven wrong on my last visit to Tokyo when I stopped at the legendary Café de l’Ambre for a cup of their finest aged coffee.

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Minatoya soba

Every time I go to Tokyo, I am a bit overwhelm by the gastronomical choices I must face. Within the limit of my budget and appetite, I always try to eat something new and exciting.

I found Minatoya address in Pen with New Attitude magazine  and armed with my Tokyo atlas, I slowly made my way to this mysterious soba restaurant which is located not too far from Shinbashi station.

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