Japanese Food

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shmuelio
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2005/05/10 12:19:35 (permalink)

Japanese Food

I lived in Japan for 2 1/2 years. I tried many of their foods. What I liked the best was Okazu, Gioza and Yaki Soba. Most Japanese places in the states don't make these. The Samurai Restaurant in OKC had some ok food that was just like the small places in Japan I remember.
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    efuery
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/10 13:38:09 (permalink)
    I Hear you for I, too an a HUGE fan of Yaki Soba. I have yet to find it offered anywhere in CT. (I first tried it in college at a Japanese Restaurant in Greeley, CO of all places)
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/10 13:56:25 (permalink)
    The best yaki soba I ever had was in an incredibly small place. That was the only thing they served. Your choice was pork or beef and only one size.
    It was a really huge portion served on a platter with chopsticks(sorry no fork) and a glass of water, no choice for drinks. The portion was so big, easily could have fed two people. The quality was really good and portion was better than at the Last Chance. This place was in Naha, Okinawa, Japan. The hole in the wall was really good. I guess they have to try harder.
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    GordonW
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/10 14:58:15 (permalink)
    Whenever I've visted Japan, the noodle shops are a big treat. Ramen and soba, fried or in soup with toppings, and the gyoza. Reasonable price, and tasty. Could always tell the ramen shops because, if you stretch a bit, the Japanese characters on the sign outside look like the algebraic equation "5-xy".
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    BT
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/10 18:57:03 (permalink)
    One of my favorite late-night (or not so late) spots is Sapporo-Ya in SF's Japantown. Although I've been eating here for 20 years, I've only recently discovered it's a branch of a Japanese chain. Anyway, on a cold foggy night a bowl of their Cha-shu ramen (that's ramen with pork) is just the thing. Here is more info and reviews: http://www.epinions.com/rest-review-48B6-42C4D404-3A44FB3B-prod3

    They have pretty much all the things you crave and their noodles are made on-location. Their gyoza, by the way, are superb and better than any Chinese pot-stickers I've had (and given that I've been eating my way through SF's Chinese restaurants for 22 years, I've had a few).

    PS--I, too, lived in Japan (Okinawa and near Mt. Fuji on Honshu) for over a year in the mid-70's and noodles were my dietary staple there.
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 12:46:29 (permalink)
    When you go to a Japanese Movie Theatre. They have dried minnows and dried squid at the concession. Sorry, no popcorn or jujubees.
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 12:47:41 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by efuery

    I Hear you for I, too an a HUGE fan of Yaki Soba. I have yet to find it offered anywhere in CT. (I first tried it in college at a Japanese Restaurant in Greeley, CO of all places)
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 12:53:00 (permalink)
    Message for efuery. In Koza City they had the "last chance" and another place in Naha was really good.The place in Naha was the best. You had to order either beef or pork Yaki Soba. That was all they served. You got a huge serving, probably three adults could be fed from one order. They only sold Yaki Soba. With your food you got served a glass of water. If you wanted tea or soda you had to leave and buy it at another place. If you ever get the chance try okazu and gyoza.
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 12:56:26 (permalink)
    To GordonW, when you go again to Japan, look for the places that have the fake food on display in the window and also have very few round eyes for customers. That would be a good place to eat. Be sure to try Kobe Beef stir fry and Chicken Yaki Tori.
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 13:01:42 (permalink)
    To GordonW, when you go again to Japan, look for the places that have the fake food on display in the window and also have very few round eyes for customers. That would be a good place to eat. Be sure to try Kobe Beef stir fry and Chicken Yaki Tori.
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    CarolinaBill
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 14:04:37 (permalink)
    Actually learning from being a diehard fan of "Iron Chef" (by far the most interesting cooking show on tv) that Japanese food is a lot more interesting than most of what we see. My last experience was at a Japanese "steak house" called "Kyoto" (highly original, probably a chain). Basically plain rice, unflavored vegetables, and uninteresting grilled meat with little more for taste than soy sauce. The chef puts on a fairly good show, but all in all I can't imagine that this is what Japanese typically eat. Guess I will have to go to larger city to try somewhat more authentic Japanese cuisine.

    And don't even get me started on the now-ubiquitous Chinese buffets that now attempt ersatz sushi at room temperature holding.
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    GordonW
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 14:49:41 (permalink)
    quote:
    To GordonW, when you go again to Japan, look for the places that have the fake food on display in the window and also have very few round eyes for customers. That would be a good place to eat. Be sure to try Kobe Beef stir fry and Chicken Yaki Tori.


    The plastic-food-in-the-display-case places are the easiest of all. Several times I gone into a place and just pointed to something on the menu -- take a chance. It's easier just taking the wait person outside and point at what you want in the case. No misunderstandings, and you get what you want. And the wait person generally has a sense of humor about it.
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    BT
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/17 19:00:05 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by CarolinaBill

    Actually learning from being a diehard fan of "Iron Chef" (by far the most interesting cooking show on tv) that Japanese food is a lot more interesting than most of what we see. My last experience was at a Japanese "steak house" called "Kyoto" (highly original, probably a chain). Basically plain rice, unflavored vegetables, and uninteresting grilled meat with little more for taste than soy sauce. The chef puts on a fairly good show, but all in all I can't imagine that this is what Japanese typically eat. Guess I will have to go to larger city to try somewhat more authentic Japanese cuisine.



    Indeed. The meat-grilled-in-front-of-you sort of thing was, I think, invented by the Benihana chain but, in any case, doesn't much resemble what Japanese people eat. They do eat a lot of plain rice and vegetables, but also huge quantities of seafood and noodles; very little meat although one of my favorite Japanese foods in ton katsu (sometimes spelled don katsu or donkatsu) which is breaded pork cutlet with a "special sauce" (available these days in all CA grocery stores and, I assume, many elsewhere--Kikkoman makes a good version).
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/19 16:42:06 (permalink)
    Bt, and double Chili. I think what you meant was "katsudon". Simply means like a bowl of food. Usually they give us this thick stew. Pour the liquid out on top of the rice. Yes they eat a lot of fish and rice. Ever had eel sushi or ground cat meat tacos? Charlies Tacos in Koza city. I lived there for 2 1/2 years and when I came back to the states. I could barely speak English. My japanese was good, but I probably sounded horrible. I had this stir fry that was made with baby octupus. I think i ate every possible thing they could serve.
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/19 16:49:55 (permalink)
    In a hurry , just wanted to make a quick post. I had thissweet,sour,hot and sweet Pickled fruit and veggie mix when in japan. You never new if a cherry was going to be super hot or sweet. Really different. You didnt know what to expect. I had this in Japan, but never in the states, anybody had this before??
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    BT
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/19 19:00:11 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by shmuelio

    Bt, and double Chili. I think what you meant was "katsudon". Simply means like a bowl of food. Usually they give us this thick stew. Pour the liquid out on top of the rice. Yes they eat a lot of fish and rice. Ever had eel sushi or ground cat meat tacos? Charlies Tacos in Koza city. I lived there for 2 1/2 years and when I came back to the states. I could barely speak English. My japanese was good, but I probably sounded horrible. I had this stir fry that was made with baby octupus. I think i ate every possible thing they could serve.


    Nope. Tonkatsu (or donkatsu or ton katsu or don katsu) is a breaded (with panko) pork cutlet, deep fried. They do pretty much the same thing with other meats like chicken but pork is the classic. The rice is on the side as, usually is some pickled vegi or salad (in the US). It's served as any fried meat on a plate--no bowl.

    PS--You are bringing back some memories. I was a doctor with the Marines (12th regiment) stationed at Camp Hague (now torn down) just north of Koza and Kadena AFB in 1973-74. It was fairly rural there then but I imagine the island is pretty urbanized now. I had my first taco there (I grew up in the east where mexican food wasn't seen back then)--maybe at Charlie's but I don't recall the name of the place (It was near a beach on the East China Sea).
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    lyto73
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/19 19:08:14 (permalink)
    I have visited Japan plenty of times but never lived there. I also like yaki soba and found a place (thanks to my Japanese neighbour) in metro-ATL that serve authentic Japanese food. I can't remember the name, but it's off Peachtree Industrial Blvd in a small old shopping plaza. I'll post again if I ever remember the name. Now I am getting hungry for some yaki soba....
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    WaffleHouserules
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/19 23:01:53 (permalink)
    I speak Japanese and I have aten Tampura- Pronuncen Tanpura. Sushi isint really what we call sushi over there. Nihion Ni ete tanpura o tabate- I went to Japan and ate Tampura.
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/20 09:13:41 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by BT

    quote:
    Originally posted by shmuelio

    Bt, and double Chili. I think what you meant was "katsudon". Simply means like a bowl of food. Usually they give us this thick stew. Pour the liquid out on top of the rice. Yes they eat a lot of fish and rice. Ever had eel sushi or ground cat meat tacos? Charlies Tacos in Koza city. I lived there for 2 1/2 years and when I came back to the states. I could barely speak English. My japanese was good, but I probably sounded horrible. I had this stir fry that was made with baby octupus. I think i ate every possible thing they could serve.


    Nope. Tonkatsu (or donkatsu or ton katsu or don katsu) is a breaded (with panko) pork cutlet, deep fried. They do pretty much the same thing with other meats like chicken but pork is the classic. The rice is on the side as, usually is some pickled vegi or salad (in the US). It's served as any fried meat on a plate--no bowl.

    PS--You are bringing back some memories. I was a doctor with the Marines (12th regiment) stationed at Camp Hague (now torn down) just north of Koza and Kadena AFB in 1973-74. It was fairly rural there then but I imagine the island is pretty urbanized now. I had my first taco there (I grew up in the east where mexican food wasn't seen back then)--maybe at Charlie's but I don't recall the name of the place (It was near a beach on the East China Sea).
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    SouthHillbilly
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/25 00:34:13 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by WaffleHouserules

    I speak Japanese and I have aten Tampura- Pronuncen Tanpura. Sushi isint really what we call sushi over there. Nihion Ni ete tanpura o tabate- I went to Japan and ate Tampura.


    Wafflehouse. . . please explain.
    I thought "sushi" means "rice" and a piece of raw fish on a ball of rice is the same here or there.
    No?!
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    BT
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/25 01:39:07 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by SouthHillbilly


    Wafflehouse. . . please explain.
    I thought "sushi" means "rice" and a piece of raw fish on a ball of rice is the same here or there.
    No?!


    Sushi doesn't mean "rice". Sushi is sushi. In Japan, it's virtually an art form. A top sushi chef is a master of a craft--and well paid for it too. Among the difficult things they do is slicing raw seafood into delicate slices without mangling it. And selecting only the freshest seafood (certainly not just fish) is part of it. Also, if you are familiar with so-called "fugu" which is a poisonous puffer fish, they must be experts at dissecting it so as to serve only the edible, non-poisonous parts (a great delicacy). If your sushi chef isn't up to his job, you die. This is serious business.

    The "ball of rice" that you refer to is only one form of sushi and it actually isn't just a "ball of rice". First of all, it's a very special type of medium grain (and very sticky) rice. Second, it's flavored with vinegar and other stuff (I'm not sure exactly what) before it's formed into a ball. But my preferred form of sushi is the "maki" which is rolled and wrapped in nori (seaweed), then sliced for serving. And the presentation--how it looks along with taste--is everything.

    Japanese has several words for rice. Probably a lot more than I know. When I lived there, my Japanese dictionary advised the word for steamed rice was "gohan". But in restaurants, it seemed that they didn't recognize that word like they did "raisu" which always seemed to me just a curruption of the English "rice" as "basuburro" is a corruption of baseball.

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    WaffleHouserules
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/25 21:58:56 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by SouthHillbilly

    quote:
    Originally posted by WaffleHouserules

    I speak Japanese and I have aten Tampura- Pronuncen Tanpura. Sushi isint really what we call sushi over there. Nihion Ni ete tanpura o tabate- I went to Japan and ate Tampura.


    Wafflehouse. . . please explain.
    I thought "sushi" means "rice" and a piece of raw fish on a ball of rice is the same here or there.
    No?!


    Sushi is the rice, but it comes with a piece of raw fish. Sushi o tabamasan- I dont eat sushi.
    #22
    BT
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/25 23:15:58 (permalink)
    I very much believe WHR is pulling our gaijin legs.
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    GordonW
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/26 00:24:41 (permalink)
    No one has used the joke yet, so I will:

    "Ya'll call it sushi. Here in the South we call it fish bait."
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/26 10:54:02 (permalink)
    I had these ground cat meat tacos in Japan. After the first twenty tacos and six Orion beers they didnt seem so bad. Anybody had meow tacos??
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/26 11:01:22 (permalink)
    Message for BT. I was at Kadena foor 2 1/2 years. I ate at Camp Hansen a few times. Small place for Navy Seabees and Some Japanese Self Defense Forces. They had decent spagetti, but their Mexican was very sorry. Hey there was this place not far from Maromi Street caled Soul Food. They only served a fried fish fillet sandwich. Very huge portion and very good also cheap. They had this paintings all over the building showing Shaft with a huge afro.!!
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    shmuelio
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/26 11:07:39 (permalink)
    Message for BT. In Okinawa they had the Habu/Mongoose fights. The loser got cooked and served. I had fresh stir fried with vegetables Habu and also Mongoose. For those looking and dont know a Habu is a poisonous viper in the Islands( a snake). Really something different.
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    BT
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/26 11:55:10 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by shmuelio

    Message for BT. In Okinawa they had the Habu/Mongoose fights. The loser got cooked and served. I had fresh stir fried with vegetables Habu and also Mongoose. For those looking and dont know a Habu is a poisonous viper in the Islands( a snake). Really something different.


    The more things change, the more they stay the same. Except when I was there, Camp Hansen was the biggest Marine base on the island and very busy.
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    WaffleHouserules
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/05/26 23:01:36 (permalink)
    Taco-"Tako" Means Octapus In Japanese, never say I want a taco in Japanese, because your going to be getting Octapus.
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    boilermaker
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    RE: Japanese Food 2005/07/08 17:54:33 (permalink)
    Stirring the ton katsu/katsudon debate:

    You both are kind of right. Ton katsu is a breaded pork cutlet, while katsudon is a bowl of rice with pork cutlet and "stuff" (usually green onions, fried egg, etc.) There is also oyakudon, a breaded chicken cutlet.

    I was at Camp Hansen in 1983, then moved to MCAS Iwakuni for 1 1/2 years.

    You can get yakisoba noodles at asian markets (or in most supermarkets in CA). I make it whenever the mood hits me.
    #30
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