Tag Archives: 日本料理

Sushi & Sashimi: The Basics 4/5: Sushi Presentations-Te-Maki Zushi/Cone Sushi

Te-Maki Zushi/手巻き寿司, Hand-rolled sushi or more appropriately said “Cone Sushi). like Te-mari sushi that I introduced yeaterady, are the perfect way of making your own sushi at great informal sushi parties!

I know that Jenn , Debbie, and Melody are going to get some great ideas from that notion!LOL

Now, if you decide to organize a Te-Maki Sushi Party, make sure that you have plenty of “neta”/fillings ready for your guests to easily choose from.
Bear in ind the priorities of your guests. Vegan and vegatarian sushi are very easy to provide for. If need be prepare different plates of ingredients.

Next you need nori/海苔/ dried sheets of seaweed. Cut to the size most appropriate to your te-maki. keep in mind the appetite of ypur guests. Some might want them small, others large. Do experiment!

Prepare enough sushi rice for all to fill their te-maki with.
I would suggets you make at least 3 large bowls of them:
One seasoned with sesame seeds like the Missus does all the time, one plain, and another one seasoned with an ingredient of your choice: finely chopped pickle, chopped cooked shiitake, and so on.


The above te-maki includes three ingredients: avocado, katsuo/bonito and fresh salmon sashimi.

Spread a triangle of sushi rice on the left half of the nori/dry seaweed.
The seaweed sheets ought to be cut in half along their length first.

Place the ingredients over the rice as shown in picture.

Start rolling from the left.

Keep turning until you have completed the cone!


Hera is a group of four different te-maki as a combination suggestion with ingredients that should please both Japanese and non-Japanese.
Do experiment!

Kimchi, tuna flakes, mayonnaise and sesame seeds!

Crab meat and mayonnaise. You could add some green leaf vegetables, too!

Asparaguses (boiled), tuna flakes and mayonnaise. You could include some curry powder in the mayonnaise!

Salmon roe. Season the roe with a little soy sauce first! Some wasabi would be welcome, too!


Here are more samples to help your imagination:

Chili sauce shrimps and kawaire daikon sprouts.

Tuna, shiso and ikura/salmon roe.

Roast beef, omelette and vegetables!

Lettuce, surimi, omelette and cucumber.

Fried pork, shiso and kawaire daikon sprouts.

Nato and hijiki seaweed for vegans!

All vegetables again!

I’m going to Sushi Ko with the Missus tomorrow. I will ask Mr. Oda to think of something!LOL

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Seasonal Fishes 12: Shirogisu/Sillago

Posted by Shizuoka Gourmet


Shirogisu, or Sillago in English probably has as many Japanese names as English names.
The Sillago found along the Japanese shores is also called sillago japonica, Whiting or Smelt-Whiting in english, Shirogisu, Kisu, Magisu and Kisugo in Japanese.

The best specimen in Japan are caught in Fukuoka (Kyushu) and Ehime (Shikoku) prefectures from Spring to Summer.
It is also a sport angler’s favourite as they come in all sizes, although the everage will not measure much more than 10 cm.

Standard Shirogisu Sashimi

As a sahimi/raw fish it van be prepared in many manners:
Standard sashimi as above.

Shirogisu Konbujime Sashimi.
As konbujime, it will be matured between two sheets of wet konbu/seaweed to attain a sweet taste.

Shirogisu Aburi Sashimi

As aburi/lightly seared, one can enjoy two different textures and tastes at the same time.
Mind you, it is not easy to sear properly as the fillets are very thin!

The greatest part of the sillago catch comes from Indonesia, Korea, Thailand, China and other Asian countries.
Fortunately, here in Shizuoka, we do catch a sizeable amount in Suruga Bay guaranting freshness in season.

Shirogisu Sushi Nigiri.

If absolutely fresh, shirohisu/sillago makes for an interesting morsel, the more for it as it is quite rare in this sushi nigiri form.

Anglers will certainly appreciate it grilled on the stick at a BBQ on the beach with a nice pint of beer!

But the most popular way of savouring it is arguably as tempura or breaded and deep-fried, although the fish taste will vary greatly with freshness!
But if absolutely fresh, don’t forget to deep-fry its bones and head!

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Crab Species 1: Snow Crab/Sawagani (amended & expanded)

Snow Crabs, or Zuwagani in Japanese are very popular not only in Japan, but also in Russia, Canada and many other countries.

In Japan, they are also known under the following names: Matsubagani, Echizengani and Yoshigani.
The females are also called Seikogani, Megani or Koubakogani.
They are caught mainly in Autumn and Winter.
Their number have decreased in the Japan seas down to a yearly catch of 5,000 tonnes while 60,000 tonnes are imported from Russia and Canada.


(Male Snow Crab)


(Female snow Crab)

Male and female snow crabs are equally succulent, but the males contain more flesh and are accordingly more expensive.

The “thorns” of a male snow crab are bigger.

The “teeth” of a male snow crab are triangular in a seesaw shape.
The female “teeth” are in a straight line.

The underbelly of a female snow crabis flatish.


When buying a female (10 tmes as cheap) snow crab, choose a specimen with as few eggs as possible. Above speciman just has too many!


A female snow crab should contain plenty of succulent orange egg sacs (the eggs not yet “born”). Otherwise, there is very little reason to buy any!

Crabs can be eaten in many ways, even raw, but my favourites are on sushi!


Male Snow crab leg Sushi Nigiri and Female snow crab Sushi Nigiri and its egg sacs!

Suwagani/Snow Crab legs, when lightly boiled can make for beautiful sushi nigiri.

Cheaper varieties can still make fr some remarkable gunkan sushi combining the boiled white flesh and “miso”/brains!

If the Japanese can get their hands on the whole crab, will simply boil it and eat the meat directly out of the shell with a sweet vinegar dressing.
As for the “miso”/brains they will be served in the shell heated again with a big helping of Japanese sake!

Now, live snow crabs make for extravagant sashimi!

The same can savoured in shabu-shabu!

Italian restaurants in Japan regularly serve it in pasta!

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Dinner at Sushi Ko (’09/12/10)

When I go for sushi with the Missus, we invariably visit Sushi Ko in Sushi Ko.
I just can’t enumerate all the good reasons for visiting this sushi restaurant.
It is the best deal in town when it comes to quality, freshness, prices and service. Full stop.

We were served ankimo/アンキモ or monkfish liver (I call it Japanese foir gras!) with the first drink.
That helped us consider which sashimi to start with.
Here is what we ordered on that particular day (the fish served is only seasonal at Sushi Ko, so choosing sashimiis a great venture!):

-Bottom left: “honmaguro/本鮪”, blue fin tuna from Oma (Aomori Prefecture), chu-toro/semi-fat part.
-Top left: O-toro/belly fat part of same fish
-Bottom centre: “Aori Ika/あおり烏賊, Great Fin Reef Squid from Suruga Bay in Shizuoka Prefecture.
-Bottom right: Akami/lean part rom same tuna.

Notice the “shiso/紫蘇”, perilla flowers, grated “wasabi/山葵” from Shizuoka and “wakame/若布” seaweed at the back!

“Kinmeidai/金目鯛”, gold eye seabream from Izu penisula in Shizuoka Prefecture resting on a shiso/perilla leaf.

As we were not ready yet for the sushi (rice) we ordered one more sashimi: “aji tataki/鯵たたき”, or saurel/mackerel pike tartare Caught off Shizuoka shores).
Very fresh and enjoyable as you little bits at a time.

Just to prove how fresh the fish was (it was caught live from the tank), we were served its head and bones dep-fried. This is actually the traditional Japanese way to get their calcium for their bodies!

Sushi is not only superlative at sashimi and sushi, but they also provide a great array of excellent cooked dishes.
The Missus being ravenous, she couldn’t help asking for the “hotate gratin/帆立グラタン, scallops gratin! French cuisine at a sushi restaurant! Why not!

On the other I couldn’t help ogling at the “botan ebi/牡丹蝦, large prawns” from Hokkaido. I opted for them as sushi nigiri. These large prawns are very sweet and are exclusively eaten raw.

Once again, to prove their freshness, we were served the heads deep-fried!

“Maguro Zuke/鮪付け”, marinated tuna is another morsel that we must have. The tuna, akami/lean part usually is marinated for 10~20 minutes in a mixture of soy sauce, sake and mirin (and other “secret” ingredients) before being placed on the shari/rice ball. Almost makes for a dessert.

One particular creation by Sushi Ko is their Sushi Millefeuille (another French concept?)
They offer two kinds, one international style, the other Japanese style.
For once, we chose the Japanese style:
“kanpachi/間八” or greater Amberjack, “Kazu no Ko/数の子”, or herring roe and cucumber on the first tier, “Katsuo Bushi/鰹節” or dry bonito shavings and chopped thin leeks, the whole surrounded with dressing and “Tobikko/飛び子” or flying fish roe!

From then it was ordering morsels, one set of two/”nikan-二冠” at a time:
“hotate/帆立”, raw scallops muscle part.

“HIrame/平目”, or sole, served pre-seasoned with a little salt and lemon juice. Perfect as it is. No need for soy sauce!

“Me-negi/芽葱”, or leek sprouts for the vegans!

The Missus couldn’t stop and ordered Japanese-style deep-fried oysters!

And the ubiquitous “Ikura mini don/いくらミニ丼”, or mini bowl of rice topped with salmon roe and freshly grated wasabi (from Shizuoka, of course!).

As for me, I will not leave the place without the “Tamagoyaki/卵焼き” or Japanese omellette. Home-made (not all sushi restaurants go through the pain of cooking their own tamagoyaki!”) and artfully cut!

And the extravagant dessert: “Anago/穴子”, conger eel first grilled to a soft texture and topped with tare/sauce (always original at Sushi Ko!)!

We did have a lot of drink, I can assure you, but we remembered what we savoured!
Next time? Very soon, I’m sure!

Sushi Ko
shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho. 2-3-1 (Aoba Koen)
Tel.: 054-2512898
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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Sashimi Plate at Tomii (’09/12/04)

I suppose I do not need to introduce Tomii again as it is my favourite Japanese restaurant in the whole of Shizuoka Prefecture!
To make a long story short, I paid them a visit last night on my way back from university before going home.

I was not that hungry, so I just ordered “o-tsukuri/sashimi plate”.

From left to right:
Yellow carrot, Suzuki/black bass, various sprouts, Kyoto ninjin/Kyoto red carrot, Aka Ika/red squid, shiso/perilla flowers and beni shigure daikon/red daikon variety.

For a closer view of the fresh vegetables!

From left to right:
Kan buri/Winter yelowtail on shiso/perilla leaf, Uni/sea urchin under a slice beni daikon/red daikon and bachi maguro/tuna variety.

Clarity: very clear
Colour: faint golden hue
Aroma: Fresh, discreet, feminine, fruity. Memories of vanilla, banana and pineapple.
Body: velvety
Taste: Soft attack. Well-rounded. Shirt tail.
Pleasant, fleeting, feminine, sophisticated.
Fruity and dry, but very smooth.
Pineapple, soft citruses
Junmai tingle appears with food with a late appearance by almonds.
Very soft and fleeting finish with more dry almonds.

Overall: Extravagant, sophisiticated, fleetingly feminine are not exaggerated descriptions for this sake, the last created by Master Brewer hase who passed away in 2009.
Now, how would you drink it?
With your love? as an extravagant aperitif? Or on your own away from the bustle of everyday life….

Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tokiwa-cho, 1-2-7, Tomii Bldg, 1F
Tel.: 054-274-0666
Business hours: 17:00~22:00
Closed on Sundays
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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Marine Life Sustainability and Stock Preservation in Japan


Foodbuzz never asked me for such an article. I just wrote it first out of concern for some of my Foodbuzz Friends!

It was Lou-Ann‘s surprise in particular which originally prompted me into investigation to back up knowledge acquired though many years spent in this great country, Japan. It is the second time I publish this article as it has become more of actuality and new information has been made available.

I use the word “great” when applied to Japan for a simple reason:
Japan is the one country which most extensively conducts and sponsors research and development of fish stocks.
This country has also come up with some momentous discoveries related to the fishing environment:
-Japanese fishermen south of Kyushu Island discovered that planting trees on small islands increased manifold the amount of vegetal plankton carried into the surrounding sea resulting in an immediate increase of the fish population.
-Japanese researchers found out that building small pyramids on the sea floor with concrete or plastic (a beneficial dumping at last?) blocks attracted corals, sea anemones, seaweed and shellfish, thus creating a food chain for fish. Such pyramids will surely prove more beneficial to mankind than all the Egyptian pyramids put together!
They have also realised that dragging out sunk ships was not needed as the same lost vessels were populated by all kinds of marine life!
In the north of Japan crab stocks are been replenished by simply sinking giant scaffolds to the bootom of the sea, thus providing the delicious critters with the subtarreanean geography they love best!
Sakura ebi/Cherry shrimps fishermen in Yui (Shizuoka Prefecture again!) syphon the shrimp out of the nets before opening and releasing all other marine lie safely back into the sea!

The Japanese have been (unjustly) accused of emptying the seas. Actually Spain holds the world record for fish catch and consumption.
I already have written an article on whale meat. I find it galling that Japan is villified for eating whale meat by the very countries which depopulated the globe of sea-mammals in the 19th Century: US, Canada, Russia, Australia and New Zealand (alright, Great Britain for the last two maybe!) in the Pacific Ocean. US, Canada, Norway, Great Britain, France, Spain and Russia in the Atlantic Ocean. And most of them again in the Arctic and Antarctic Oceans. What do you think Commodore Perry was before he was delegated to order Japan to “open its doors”?
This country is repeatedly thrown into the same basket of evils. I was recently “told off” because the Japanese kill sharks for their fins before throwing the dead fish back into the sea. Sorry, mate, but you will have to ask the Chinese! The Japanese eat the whole fish when they catch it and make kamaboko from it!

It could go on and on, but this was never the real purpose of this article.

Now, to illustrate and justify the heading of this posting, here is a list of the fish and seafood raised in Japan as opposed to being caught in the wild:

Blue Fin Tuna/Honmaguro

Yes, you read it, Blue Fin Tuna! After 23 years of experimentation, a Kyushu fishmonger has finally succeeded in producing the fish from natural mating inside giant offshore sea parks. The fish is already sold over the counter at supermarkets.
No later than last year the Tokai Marine University in Shimizu, Shizuoka City (I live in a great place, don’t I?) also succedein a more sientific manner the raising of the same tuna from the egg, promising that domestic Blur Fin Tuna will roam the same waters in Suruga bay as their wild cousins!
With a ban on tuna fishing in the Mediterranean Sea being pushed through legislation by the EU, Japan will find itself one day in the rich position of actually exporting tuna!

Big-eyed Tuna/Mebachi Maguro

Human-raising Research is conducted and nearly brought to fruition.

Albacore Tuna: Kihada Maguro

Human-raising Research is conducted and will soon be sucessful.

Indian Ocean Tuna/Indo Maguro: Human-raising Research is conducted abroad and such fish are imported to Japan.


Over 62,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year.


Over 49,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year.

Striped Jack/Shima Aji

Over 3,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year.

Horse Mackerel/Ma Aji

Over 3,500 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year.

True Mackerel-Japanese Mackerel/Ma Saba

Human raising succeeded and fish are already sold over the counter.

True Sardine-Pilchard/Ma Iwashi

Human-raising Research is being conducted and could created a real revolution as the same fish also become feed for above tuna.

Isaki/Grouper variety-Parapristipona Trilinoatum

9 tons of human-raised fish consumed in Nagasaki Prefecture alone last year. Shizuoka is also coming up with them!

Silver Salmon/Gin Sake

Over 8,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year.
Production very fast.


Over 71,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year as opposed to 15,000 tons caught at sea.
Al kinds of seabreams are actually on the line.


382 tons tons of human-raised fish consumed in Kagawa Prefecture (Shikoku) alone last year.

Sand Borer-Sillago/Kisu

Human-raising Research is being conducted.

Bar-tailed Flathead/Kochi

Human-raising is being conducted.

Ainame/Alexagrammos otakii

Human-raising has succeeded and some fish is already sold over the counter.

Kelp Bass/Kue

A success story in Shizuoka and Nagasaki Prefectures where human-raised fish are already sold over the counter.

Globefish-Tiger Globefish/Tora Fugu

Over 5,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year.
Shizuoka is rapidly becoming a major producer, especially inhamana (sea) Lake in the Western part of the Prefecture.

Large Prawn/Kuruma Ebi

Over 1,700 tons of human-raised prawns consumed last year.

Spiny Lobster/Ise Ebi

Human-raising Research is being conducted.

Ark Shell-Bloody Clam/Akagai

Human-raising Research is being conducted.


Human-raising Research is being conducted

Large Cockle/Torigai

Human-raising Research is being conducted

Hard Clam/Hamaguri

Very large amounts of half human-raised shellfish consumed last year.
All the clams picke by tourist in Hamana lake have actually been planted young there!

Surf Clam/Hokkigai

Human-raising Research bein conducted

Abalone/ Awabi

32 tons tons of human-raised abalones consumed in Hokkaido and Nagasaki Prefectures alone last year.
Now, knowing the price of such shellfish and the enormous consumption in other countries, it promises to become a very lucrative business!


Over 270,000 tons of human-raised scallops consumed last year.
The shellffish being hermaphrodite, it will become easier and easier tomake and sell. Here in Shizuoka it has simply become ridiculaoulsy cheap!


Over 220,000 tons of human-raised oysters + over 35,000 tons of the same out of the shell consumed last year as opposed to 1,600 tons of wild oysters.
Actually soon or later the catch of wild oysters will become strictly regulated as many other shellfish. Poaching both by Japanese and “foreigners” is being fought off in earnest.

Sea Urchin/Uni

7 tons tons of human-raised sea urchin consumed in Hokkaido Prefecture alone last year.

Conger Eel/ Ma Anago

Human-raising Research is being conducted

Common Eel/Unagi

Over 21,000 tons of human-raised fish consumed last year as opposed to 610 tons caught in the wild.

In some places, notably Mishima City, eel restaurants refuse to serve wild eels.

Oike Conger eel/Hamo

Human-raising Research is being conducted.

The Japanese have also starting research on different varieties of octopus/tako and squids/ika.

Probably more coming soon or later!

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Ankimo Presentations 2

The Japan Blog List

Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!


Plain steamed ankimo served with simple cold ponzu sauce

I have already introduced the recipe for preparing Ankimo/Frogfish Liver (Japanese Foie Gras) in a precedent article as well an article on various presentations.
This posting will show you other possibilities!


The oshizushi/pressed sushi above is a beauty with fish jelly on top!


Ankimo Gunkan Mini Seriies!







Ankimo does not have to be on sushi.
It can be cooked for its own sake such as in Japanese style above or:


Ankimo Pasta. Japanese foie gras instead of duck/goose foie gras!