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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Homemade Mochi Ice Cream with Gluten-free Wrapper

Today I will teach you how to make “Homemade Mochi Ice Cream”. The mochi wrapper is made of glutinous rice flour (mochiko), sugar and water. The dish can become vegan, vegetarian, and/or non-dairy depending on the kind of ice cream you choose.

This impressively easy recipe may get you out of shopping for overpriced mochi ice cream products.


Ingredients (about 6 mochi wrappers)



Here are some tips. 

1. You may consider reducing the amount of sugar to make healthier wrappers. The good news is you can use 1.4 oz. of sugar, 0.7 oz. of sugar or even a non-sugar sweetener that can be used in cooking, instead of 2.8 oz. of sugar. However, when you use less sugar or artificial sweeteners the wrappers only stay good if you eat them soon after making the dish. This is because wrappers containing less than 2.8 oz. freeze hard in the freezer and you lose the nice and soft mochi texture. Therefore I recommend using twice as much glutinous rice flour to prevent the mochi from freezing solid. 

2. The dough is very sticky. Using a fork when stirring is better than a spoon or spatula.



[Recipe]

1. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the rice flour and sugar. Mix well. Add the water gradually, stirring constantly to keep lumps from forming. Microwave (1000w) for 1 minute. Remove the bowl and stir for 1 minute. Microwave for another 1 minute and stir again for 1 minute. At this point, the dough should become translucent. 

*If the dough doesn’t have enough sugar, the white dough won’t turn a translucent color.

2. Place the dough on a well-dusted work surface. You should use cornstarch to dust the surface. Sprinkle more cornstarch on the dough. Once the dough is cool enough to handle, roll out the dough using your fingertips until it is a very thin layer (about 0.2 inch-thick). Cut into 6-equal-pieces.

*You can wrap each mochi wrapper and store in the freezer for 3 weeks. 

3. Using a small ice cream scooper, scoop about 1 heaping tablespoon of well-frozen ice cream and place on the center of a piece of mochi wrapper. Seal the edge of the wrapper with fingers. 

*Using a small amount of ice cream makes your work easier until you get used to it.

*Freezing small-ball-sized ice cream in advance also helps your work.

You can enjoy this delicious mochi ice cream as soon as you make it, or you can store in the freezer until it is served.


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Scrumptious Mochi stuffed Fried Tofu Abura-Age (Vegan/Gluten-free)

Today I introduce you to “Mochi stuffed Fried Tofu Abura-Age in Dashi Soup”. The abura-age is juicy from soaking in delicious dashi soup and the mochi has a nice and soft texture.

Abura-age is a common food in Japan, deep-fried thin sliced tofu. You can find it in many Asian grocery stores.

Mochi is a traditional Japanese food. It is a soft rice cake made from steamed sticky rice. There are some products called MOCHI ice cream which is ice cream wrapped with a thin pieces of mochi. This sometimes makes people think all mochi is ice cream related. Therefore, please be aware that in Japan when you order mochi you will get a soft and sticky rice cake rather than ice cream.

Mochi staffed fried tofu is a very popular ingredient for hot pot dishes in Japan.


Ingredients (serving 2)


The recipe is easy.

Drizzle abura-age with boiling water to remove excess oil from their surface. Cut in half, put a piece of mochi in, and seam with a toothpick.

In a sauce pan, combine water, dashi stock powder, carrot, daikon radish, shiitake mushroom, cooking sake, soy sauce and salt. Bring to a boil and simmer over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Add the mochi staffed abura-age and cook for 5 minutes. Flip them halfway through.


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Pickled Lotus Root (gluten-free/vegan)

Today I introduce you to “Pickled Lotus Root” which is basically one of Japanese new year’s dish. But it is delicious, easy-to-cook and very healthy so I make it all the time. The dish can be stored in the refrigerator for about 5 days.

Lotus root is high in vitamin C, potassium, fiber and polyphenol. Their crunchy texture is amazing! Lotus root is versatile enough to be eaten deliciously in every cooking way, such as tempura, sauté, simmering, and roasting.


Ingredients (servings 2-3)


The recipe is very easy. It takes less than 10 minutes.

  1. Slice the lotus root thinly and soak in some water for about 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a microwavable bowl, combine mirin, salt, vinegar, sugar and water, and mix well.
  3. Drain off the water from the lotus root and add the lotus root to the vinegar mixture.
  4. Cover the bowl, microwave for 1 minute, and sprinkle some crushed red pepper to taste. Let it cool at room temperature before serving or storing in the refrigerator.


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Spinach and Walnut Salad with Lemon Zest (Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-free)

Are you looking for easy, healthy yet delicious recipes? Well, this dish is for you! “Spinach and walnut salad” which has very fresh taste from lemon zest.

The recipe is very easy and quick. It takes only 5 to 6 minutes. Moreover, you can store it for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.

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Ingredients (servings 4)

10 oz. fresh baby spinach

1/4 cup walnuts pieces

Grated zest of 1 lemon

1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper

  1. Boil the spinach for 10 seconds in boiling water. Drain, rinse the spinach under cold running water and wring it dry by hand.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the spinach, walnuts, lemon zest, olive oil. Season with some salt and pepper and mix well.

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Teriyaki Tofu (Gluten-free/Vegan)

Here is a quick video how to cook Teriyaki Tofu.

It is very easy, takes only 25 minutes total, and amazingly delicious!!

Enjoy the authentic teriyaki taste!!



My book Bento for Beginners: 60 Recipes for Easy Bento Box Lunches is now available!!

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{Teriyaki Tofu Ingredients (servings 2)}


7-ounce extra firm tofu

1/2 cup corn starch

2 tablespoons sesame oil

2 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce

2 tablespoons mirin

1 tablespoon cooking sake

1/2 tablespoon sugar



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Eggless Tofu Muffins (Vegan/Vegetarian)

Have you ever thought “NO-EGG TOFU muffins” are good? Well, if you have’t, this muffins may blow you away! Tastes amazingly delicious and  1 muffin has only 164 kcal!!

I experimented so many times to get them the right texture and taste, and this is the best. You won’t taste or smell the tofu when you eat. But if you are really really sensitive to tofu aroma, you can add some squeezed lemon juice to the tofu paste to get rid of the smell completely.

Detailed and visual instructions can be found in the recipe PDF: Eggless Tofu Muffins

Here is a tip for storing: After baking, let it cool and wrap each with freezer-safe wrapper. Keep in the freezer and use within 3 weeks. Before you eat, leave the wrapped muffin out to thaw at room temperature for 3 to 4 hours.



My very first cookbook Bento for Beginners: 60 Recipes for Easy Bento Box Lunches is now available on Amazon!!

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In Japan, it is common to add “Tofu” to some dishes as an ingredient, such as hamburger steak, meatball, pancakes, and so on. It makes the dishes healthier and it requires fewer ingredients.

To make muffins healthier, I use almond milk, a combination of dark brown sugar and white sugar, a combination of all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour, and coconut oil. You can use any kind of milk, sugar and vegetable oil as a substitute.

I hope many people can enjoy these muffins! They are also great for people with egg allergies because they contain no eggs or egg products. These muffins are a healthy and delicious treat!


{Ingredients (12 muffins)}

4 Tbsp. Margarine

2 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil (I used Coconuts Oil)

35 oz. (¼ pack) Tofu

1 cup Sugar (I used ½ cup White Sugar and ½ cup Dark Brown Sugar)

¾ cups All Purpose Flour

¾ cups Whole Wheat Flour

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

1 tsp. Baking Powder

150 ml Soy Milk


Here is my recipe in PDF: Eggless Tofu Muffins


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Perfect and Easy Japanese Rice (gluten-free/ vegan)

Today I introduce you to “How to cook Japanese rice perfectly and easily”. If you have a rice cooker, you can just follow their directions. But if you don’t have one, this is the easiest recipe for perfect Japanese rice.

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Steamed rice is a staple food in Japanese cuisine. Japanese rice has soft texture and rice grains are shiny when it is cooked! We mostly eat rice two or three times a day. Even when we don’t cook, most super markets and convenience stores have many kinds of rice balls and rice products can be cooked in microwave.

Lately, some people add multi-grain rice to white rice when it is cooked to make the dish healthier but steamed white rice remains perennial favorites.



The cookbook Bento for Beginners is now available on Amazon.



 

Tips for cooking Japanese rice;

  • Find dried short-grain white rice, not “sweet sticky rice”.
  • Wash and soak rice for 30 minutes before cooking.
  • The heat level is the key. Once it boils, turn down the heat to very low not to get burned.
  • Do not open the lid when it is cooking even if it bubbles over. Wait patiently.
  • Steam the rice for 10 minutes after cooking.

Detailed and visual instructions can be found in the recipe PDF: Japanese rice

Tips for storing cooked rice;

Put one portion of cooked rice without cooling down in a glass container with a lid or freezer bag, or wrap with plastic wrap. Store in the freezer and use within 3 weeks. When you eat, put unwrapped frozen rice on a microwave-safe plate  and microwave for 2 to 3 minutes with a cover.

The key to store is to freeze the rice without cooling so it has fresh cooked rice taste even after storing for 3 weeks in the freezer.


Ingredients (4 servings, about 4 cups)

1 ½ cups short-grain white rice (I recommend Koshihikari Rice 4.4 Lb)

1 2/3 cups water


Detailed and visual instructions can be found in the recipe PDF: Japanese rice


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Tofu and Edamame with Flavorful Thick Sauce (Vegan/Gluten-free)

Today I introduce you to a great high protein dish  “Tofu and Edamame with Flavorful Thick Sauce”. This is an incredibly easy, healthy and delicious dish so it is great for weeknight dinners. 

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The seasonings are soy sauce and cooking sake. Also I use corn starch slurry to make the sauce thicker. The thick sauce coats tofu and edamame and you can enjoy all the flavors together. 

I used frozen edamame in the recipe but you can use fresh too. Edamame is a very useful, versatile and nutritious ingredient. You can add it to many dishes, like omelet, soup, salad, rice, pasta and so on. Or you can just snack on boiled edamame! In Japan we traditionally eat edamame as an appetizer when we drink beer at dinner. The reason being that edamame may help the function of the liver which helps breakdown alcohol. At some common Japanese restaurants, Izakaya, they serve edamame right after we are seated before we  order, like bread sticks in an Italian restaurant (mostly the cost is included in the price as a service fee).

The recipe is very easy and quick.

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Place tofu, edamame and seasonings into a pan and cook. Add slurry and serve!

It is a vegan and gluten free dish when you use kelp dashi stock or your favorite vegetable broth, and gluten free soy sauce.

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Ingredients (servings 2)
*Click BLUE TEXT to link to the product on Amazon*

½ pack Firm Tofu

½ cup Frozen Edamame

1 cup Dashi stock (any kind)

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

1 Tbsp. Cooking Sake 

1 Tbsp. Corn Starch (for slurry)

2 Tbsp. Water (for slurry)


Detailed and visual instructions can be found in the recipe PDF: Tofu and Edamame Dish


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Simmered Daikon Radish (Vegan/Gluten-free)

Today I introduce you to “How to Cook Simmered Daikon Radish”. 

If you are a little bit tired of eating vegetables, you should try this. 

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It is delicious, flavorful and low in calories. It has a soft and juicy texture. It is way too good, so I can’t stop eating once I dig in!

Daikon is high in vitamins, minerals, fiber and so on. Also it is easy to digest, so we traditionally eat daikon with other green vegetables and rice porridge after new year’s (we eat a lot of big meals around New Years).

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This recipe is very easy and the dish can be stored in the refrigerator for a maximum of 3 days.

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In my meals, I always have rice, soup and some various side dishes which I make ahead of time. This is an incredibly healthy dish but you need other nutrition as well. This dish can be the main dish for me, but it  actually has the nutrition of a side dish.

Here is the cooking video on my YouTube channel:

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Peel and cut daikon. Simmer with the seasonings for 20 minutes. That’s it!!

I use a knife to peel daikon. This is because daikon has thick fiber under its peel. The fiber doesn’t cook through easily so if you leave it, the final texture is not as good as if you peel it.

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Ingredients (servings 2)
*Click BLUE TEXT to link to the product on Amazon*

8~10-inch-length Daikon Radish

2 cups Dashi Stock (any kind)

2 Tbsp. Cooking Sake

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

1 Tbsp. Eden Mirin, Rice Cooking Wine

Sliced fresh Ginger to taste


Detailed and visual instructions can be found in the recipe PDF: Simmered Daikon Radish