Your Home for Homemade Japanese Food

How to cook "with visual instructions" "using familiar ingredients from your local grocery stores" healthy, traditional and delicious Japanese dishes!!


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Mashed Taro Cakes (Gluten Free/Vegan/Vegetarian)

Today I introduce you to “Mashed Taro Cakes” which is my mother’s original recipe. She cooked it with leftover “Braised Taro” which I taught you how to make in my previous post on April 14. When I was child, I loved these “Mashed Taro Cakes” more than “Braised Taro”. These two recipes have the same taste but they have a different texture.

I used the same sauce as I did with the “Braised Taro” recipe, which tastes salty-sweet. You use the sauce to finish the cakes, but you can eat them without the sauce. In fact, you can simply use salt and pepper because the taro has already absorbed the delicious sauce. Also, I coated the mashed taro patties in corn starch so the outside of the cakes are crunchy and the inside are smooth. It is very delicious!! I am sure many kids will like this dish.

Taro is high in potassium and water. Taro also is lower in calories than other kinds of potato. When you chew taro, it can feel slightly gooey. This feeling comes from mucin, which is also in our saliva and stomach juice, and it helps the stomach function better.

{Ingredients (servings 2)}

10 small “Braised Taros”

½ cup Corn Starch

3 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Here is my recipe in PDF: Mashed Taro Cakes

Here is “Braised Taro” recipe in PDF: Braised Taro


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Heal Your Stomach! “Bok Choy Milk Soup”

Of the many Japanese winter soup recipes, this Bok Choy Milk Soup is my favorite. It is easy to cook, healthy, and delicious!! I believe this is “The Winter Soup”!

Bok choy was brought to Japan from China around the 1970’s. The season for picking Bok Choy is early winter. So now is a great time to get delicious Bok Choy in many grocery stores in Japan and the US.

Bok Choy has great nutrition such as beta-carotene, vitamin C, potassium, calcium and so on. When we think about nutrition, we shouldn’t cook Bok Choy too long, but my mother always cooked this soup until the Bok Choy would get tender because it is easy for kids to eat. So many of my friends also loved my mother’s “Bok Choy Milk Soup”.

I used unsweetened soy milk in this recipe but you can use any kind of milk. And also I used turkey bacon but you can use regular bacon. I suggest you to taste and adjust the seasoning before serving if you use ingredients that are different from my recipe.

{Ingredients (servings 2)}

1 Head Bok Choy

5 slices Turkey Bacon

2 Chicken Bouillon Cubes

3 cups Soy Milk (unsweetened)

1 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Salt and Pepper for seasoning

Here is my recipe in PDF (4 MB): Bok Choy Milk Soup


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My mother’s “Keema Curry”

This is my mother’s original “Keema Curry” recipe which she made for us as kids when we couldn’t handle spicy food. It is a little different from authentic Keema Curry, but its great for the whole family.

We label this dish as a “Dry Curry” in Japanese because there is no soup. “Keema Curry” basically means a curry dish using ground meat. In Japan, Curry is very popular especially among kids because we can eat it with steamed rice.

I used “Curry Powder.” The ingredients in the powder are: paprika, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and saffron. It is very nutritious and is high in vitamin E, vitamin K, iron, beta-carotene, potassium, magnesium and so on. These helps increase our metabolism and also have antioxidant properties.

Additionally, this dish is great for mothers and fathers who have children who are picky eaters because you can mince and add various vegetables and cook with ground meat. The curry taste helps cover the taste of most vegetables so even picky eaters can get a lot of good nutrition.

Enjoy this curry dish with steamed rice or your favorite bread!

{Ingredients (servings 2)}

1 lb. Ground Chicken

½ Eggplant

1 Carrot

1 small Onion

3 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil

2 tsp. Curry Powder (ingredients: paprika, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and saffron)

1 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Black Pepper

15 dashes Worcestershire Sauce

½ Tbsp. Ketchup

½ Tbsp. Soy Sauce

Steamed Rice, for serving
(Recommended Dried Rice) Nishiki Premium Rice

Here is my recipe in PDF (5 MB): Keema Curry


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Bacon Millefeuille Nabe

Nabe is a traditional Japanese simmering dish. We simmer sea food or meat with various vegetables in Dashi stock seasoning with cooking Sake and soy sauce.

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At home or in restaurants we usually set a cooking pot on a countertop range on the table and share it as cooking the dish. The dish and the cooking warm us and the room up so it is common to have Nabe in winter.

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Today I will introduce you to bacon (I use turkey bacon, but you can use any kind) and Napa cabbage millefeuille Nabe, which requires that we set bacon and Napa cabbage leaves alternatively in a pan and simmer in Dashi stock. This time I used Kelp Dashi stock, but you can use any kind of stock you want.

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We add many kinds of vegetables to Nabe but Napa cabbage is a must-have vegetable. 95% of Napa cabbage is water so it is easy to eat for everybody because of it’s tender texture. The cabbage water also makes Nabe juicy even when simmering for a long time.  Napa cabbage also has great nutrition. It is low calorie and high in vitamin C, potassium, iron, magnesium and so on.

Juicy, tender Napa cabbage and bacon makes your Nabe very delicious! I hope you will like it!!

{Ingredients (servings 2)}

1 head Napa Cabbage

20 slices Bacon

1 cup Kelp Dashi Stock (any kind of stock is okay)
(Recommended instant bonito Dashi powder)Ajinomoto – Hon Dashi

1 Tbsp. Cooking Sake

1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce

Here is my recipe in PDF (5 MB): Bacon Millefeuille Nabe

Here is “Kelp Dashi stock” recipe in PDF: Kelp Dashi stock


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An idea for quick and healthy breakfast!!

This is an idea for a quick breakfast recipe. It takes about 10 minutes to prepare and it is also delicious and healthy!!

To make the dish healthier, I cook scrambled egg with canned tuna. Also I add steamed edamame to the plate. When you season the edamame with butter and salt, it becomes like a side dish of corn.

Edamame is high is vitamin B1, vitamin C, protein, fiber, iron, potassium, and so on. Because of the protein and the iron, edamame is a great ingredient for breakfast.

As for the tuna, my mother always said “You can be more smart and do great on tests in school if you eat fish”. She stretched a story about DHA to make me eat breakfast but it was not totally a lie. DHA increases blood vessel elasticity and improve the function of red blood cells so people say it helps make your brain more active.

I hope this recipe will be one of your favorite breakfast recipes!!

{Ingredients (1 serving)}

2 Eggs

½ can of Tuna

¼ cup Frozen Edamame

1 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Here is my recipe in PDF (4 MB): Healthy Breakfast


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Yummy Japanese “Potato Salad” (Vegetarian)

“Japanese Potato Salad” is a mix of mashed potato, mayonnaise and fresh vegetables. To make the vegetables tender and easy to eat, I knead well with salt or soak in water. This allows us to keep more nutrition in the vegetables than if we boiled them.

In Japan, potato salad is a very common homemade dish and very popular. There are many recipes which vary slightly depending on family traditions. We eat potato salad as a salad and also sometimes in sandwiches.

You can mash the potatoes however you like. If you like chunky potato, please don’t mash too much. And also you can add more potato, or reduce the mayonnaise, to taste. Enjoy!


{Ingredients (servings 3)}

2 large Potatoes

1 Carrot

1 small Cucumber

1 small Onion

6-7 Tbsp. Mayonnaise

1 Tbsp. Salt

½ tsp. Black Pepper

Water for boiling potatoes


Here is my recipe in PDF (4 MB): Potato Salad


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Grated Japanese Yam (Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free)

This recipe is just grated Japanese yam. Japanese sometimes eat grated yam by itself, pour it on steamed rice, or put it on noodles, and so on.

Japanese yam is a very nutritious vegetable as I told at https://japanese-food.org/2015/05/12/japanese-yam-salad/

The yam has a sticky texture because of Mucin, one of it’s ingredients. Especially when the yam is grated, the texture become more smooth and sticky, and this sticky texture gives our bodies some great benefits, such as protecting our mucous membranes in the stomach, protecting our body from some viruses and so on. Mucin is a soluble fiber and helps keep water in our cells.

Traditionally, people say the grated Japanese yam loosened phlegm, so I used to eat it when I caught a cough. Additionally, the yam is easy to digest so it is good food when you are sick.

It is easy, simple and quick. Nothing difficult. Just grate the yam and mix with some Japanese Dashi stock.


{Ingredients (servings 2)}

5-inch length Japanese Yam

¼ cup Kelp Dashi Stock
(Recommended Dried Kelp for Dashi stock) Dashi Dried Kelp

A splash of Soy Sauce
(Recommended Gluten-Free Soy Sauce)Soy Sauce REDUCED SODIUM [Gluten Free] (Organic)

⅛ tsp. Japanese Wasabi Paste
(Recommended Gluten-Free Wasabi Powder)Organic Seasoning Wasabi Powder


Here is my recipe in PDF (3 MB): Japanese Yam

Here is “Kelp Dashi Stock” recipe in PDF: Kelp Dashi stock


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Japanese Yam Salad (Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free)

Have you ever had Japanese yam?

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It is a kind of potato that grows straight into the ground so it has a long shape. (It sometimes grows to more than 3 feet).

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In Japan, people have eaten the yam for about 3000 years. Therefore, the yam is very important to the Japanese diet.

We can eat this yam raw because it has a gelatinized starch and some of the nutrition in this type of yam are breaks under heat. The Japanese yam is rich in diastase, a digestive enzyme which helps our digestion and absorption of nutrition into the body. Also the yam is high in vitamin B1, vitamin C, calcium, potassium and mucin.

Mucin is soluble fiber and helps keep water in our cells. Therefore, it protects our mucous membranesin the stomach, and protects our body from some viruses. Some studies say the yam also prevents dry eyes because mucin is an ingredient in tears. Mucin gives the yam a great smooth, sticky texture, especially when it is grated. This is great for our body. It heals our tiredness and helps our digestion, so the yam is great for your diet when you are recovering from being sick, when you have no appetite, and so on.

(The yam has Calcium oxalate, so it can sometimes make you feel itchy on your hands or around your lips when you touch it, but you feel better as soon as you wash the itchy part with acid water (a mixture of vinegar and water). In rare case some people are allergic to the yam, so if it gives you a weird feeling inside your mouth, you have to stop eating it and call a doctor.)

Today, I introduce you to Japanese yam salad. It is very simple and easy. I always use pickled plum sauce because it is extremely healthy and is a fermented food. But you can use any dressing you want, because the yam doesn’t have strong flavor so it won’t change the taste of your favorite dressing taste!

Enjoy your new nutritious salad!!!


{Ingredients (servings 2)}

4-inch length Japanese Yam

½ Cucumber

1 Pickled Plum

1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
(Recommended Gluten-Free Soy Sauce)Soy Sauce REDUCED SODIUM [Gluten Free] (Organic)

2 Tbsp. Rice Vinegar (total)

2 cups Water


Here is my recipe in PDF (4 MB): Japanese Yam Salad


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Mushroom Rice (Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free)

This is not fried rice, but steamed seasoned rice. In Japan a major part of the diet is RICE. Traditionally we eat white rice with every meal. A long time ago Japanese people ate millet.

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Today, we sometimes mix the rice with other ingredients to make Mushroom Rice, Bamboo Shoot Rice, Chestnut Rice, Greenbean Rice and so on. These are all steamed. If you have a rice cooker, it is very easy to cook!

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Mushroom is low calorie (about 18 kcal per 100 grams). Also high in fiber and high in minerals (especially potassium). I didn’t used dried mushrooms this time, but dried mushrooms are usually high in vitamin D. This dish is cooked in one pot or in a rice cooker so it preserves the nutritions and amazing flavor.

Please enjoy!


{Ingredients (Servings 3)}

2 ¼ cups Premium Rice, Medium Grain

3 oz. Oyster Mushroom

8 oz. Sliced Baby Bella Mushroom

3 pieces of Dried Kelp (5 square inches each)

700 ml Water

5 Tbsp. Soy Sauce REDUCED SODIUM [Gluten Free] (Organic)

2 Tbsp. Cooking Sake

2 Tbsp. Mirin Sweet Cooking Rice Wine

½ tsp. Salt


Here is my recipe in PDF (8MB): Mushroom Rice


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EGG-FREE Healthy Sweet Potato Treats (Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free)

This is an EGG-FREE and MILK-FREE healthy, tasty  Japanese-style sweet treat. Because of its sweet taste, Japanese use it for desert a lot. Examples are baked sweet potato, caramelized fried sweet potato, sweet potato snacks, dried sweet potato, mushed sweet potato and so on.

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Sweet potato is high in fiber, vitamin B, C, E, and potassium. The amount of vitamin C in a sweet potato is 10 times of that in an apple. And the vitamin C in sweet potato does not break easily when heated.

Sweet potatos gain their sweet taste when cooked slowly. So I don’t use the microwave to make them tender so I can get a really sweet taste in the dish.

This recipe uses a small amount of Mirin instead of egg as a brush coat on the dough before baking. So this is also a great sweet for kids!

I hope you will like it!


{Ingredients (15 small balls)}

1 Peeled Sweet Potato

3 cups Water

3 Tbsp. Sugar

2 Tbsp. Gluten-Free Margarine

3 Tbsp. Mirin Sweet Cooking Rice Wine

Pinch of Organic Black Sesame Seeds


Here is my recipe in PDF (5MB): Japanese Sweet Potato Treats