Kitchen Culture

Tasty tidbits from the old-fashioned Japanese kitchen
Pom Pom Sushi

Pom Pom Sushi

Pom Pom Sushi Temari-Zushi 手まり寿司 Like many frugal Japanese women who managed households in the early and mid 20th century, my mother-in-law, Kiyoko Andoh, practiced thrift in and out of the kitchen. She saved bits and pieces of cloth, turning them into quilted...

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Aku Nuki and Kogomi

Aku Nuki and Kogomi

KOGOMI こごみ・屈み Fiddlehead of the ostrich fern; Matteuccia struthiopteris What the Japanese call kogomi is commonly known in North America as fiddlehead ferns; they can be found in many parts of Canada, New England, the Midwest and the Pacific Northwest. In Japan,...

Setsubun

Setsubun

ONI wa SOTO          FUKU wa UCHI Throw out the ogres!      Bring in Good Fortune!節分 SETSUBUN means “break between seasons” and such breaks occur many times during the year. However, today Japan celebrates the setsubun break that comes early in February and...

ODEN Part TWO

ODEN Part TWO

おでん ODEN Various ingredients find their way into the belly-warming stew known as oden. Most versions include myriad sausage-like items made from surimi (fish and seafood ground to a paste). Some of these are deep-fried while others are boiled, roasted, grilled or...

ODEN Part ONE (Vegan & Vegetarian Options)

ODEN Part ONE (Vegan & Vegetarian Options)

おでん Oden Various ingredients find their way into the belly-warming stew known as oden. Most versions include myriad sausage-like items made from surimi (fish and seafood ground to a paste). There are, however, lots of options for those who prefer plant-based items...

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February 2021

Many Japanese recipes will instruct the cook to perform what is called AKU NUKI, literally “bitterness removal.”