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There's a relatively new Japanese grocery store in London (UK) called Japan Food...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Fri, 2015-04-17 18:55
There's a relatively new Japanese grocery store in London (UK) called Japan Food Hall. I've tried them and their prices are competitive with Japan Centre, sometimes better. They're running a photo contest at the moment, with the top prize being 20% off all purchases for a year. Maybe worth while if you're in the UK!

(Disclaimer: I have no connection with them except for being a customer.)


Japanese Dish Starter Kit Photo Competition
japanfoodhall.com
To celebrate our new range of kit products, we are launching Japanese Starter Dish Photo Competition and offer great prizes. Let's share your original Japanese

The answer to my previous post: The mysterious white building is a Buddhist temp...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-16 20:16
The answer to my previous post: The mysterious white building is a Buddhist temple and mausoleum called Rurikoin Byakurengedo. It's in Shinjuku, Tokyo (which is a very busy commercial district), minutes from Shinjuku station. The "mother" temple is 500 plus years old. I just love that the priests and monks who run the temple were willing to go for such a modern design. The interiors and the facilities are state-of-the-art too, and the building itself, which is made of white concrete, is said to be very earthquake-proof.

Incidentally, in Buddhism it's important to go and visit your deceased family members quite frequently, so this style of easy-to-get-to mausoleum is becoming more popular.


建築・構造について【新宿瑠璃光院白蓮華堂】永代供養の最高級納骨堂
www.byakurengedo.net
新宿瑠璃光院白蓮華堂はJR新宿駅南口よりすぐ、永代供養を行う最高級の納骨堂です。日本初、世界最大を誇るホワイトコンクリートの建築物は、世界で活躍する建築家竹山聖氏が設計。建物は徹底した耐震計画により、大地震が起こっても安心・安全な東京の室内墓所です。

Can you guess what this building is? (It's in Tokyo.)

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-16 14:31
Can you guess what this building is? (It's in Tokyo.)


Many entries on Japanese food/cuisine on English Wikipedia are woefully woeful....

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Wed, 2015-04-15 20:46
Many entries on Japanese food/cuisine on English Wikipedia are woefully woeful. Don't rely on them for serious research, please. That is all. (And no, I don't have the time or energy to fix them all.)

We put in another order for natto from our supplier today, who makes them right...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Mon, 2015-04-13 14:48
We put in another order for natto from our supplier today, who makes them right here in France (in Provence too). He said business is great - it seems French people are warming up to natto. ^_^


French natto! | Just Hungry
justhungry.com
Just Hungry is a food site dedicated to Japanese home cooking recipes for people living outside of Japan and healthy and delicious eating.

I'm pretty sure people in New England would be pissed if they knew this article...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Sun, 2015-04-12 22:35
I'm pretty sure people in New England would be pissed if they knew this article implies that lobster rolls come from NYC... ^_^; It seems Luke's Lobster is opening a branch on Omotesando in Harajuku. Quite a lot of American mid-range-ish chains have been opening up in Tokyo in the last few years.


全米NO.1グルメ?絶品ロブスターロールがついに日本上陸! | RETRIP
retrip.jp
ニューヨーかも大好きなロブスター。全米でしか味わえなかったロブスターを使ったサンドイッチ、ロブスターロールがついに日本に上陸します。アメリカと同じ素材を使った絶品ロブスターロールが味わえます。

Have you ever wondered why there are big food-stall markets in many major East/S...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Sun, 2015-04-12 17:37
Have you ever wondered why there are big food-stall markets in many major East/South-East Asian cities, but not in most Japanese cities? I didn't know either, but it seems that in 1949, the GHQ (the post-WWII occupying forces lead by the US) ordered that stalls of that nature be eliminated nationwide, because they were "unhygienic" and "criminal". (Food stalls were a major part of black markets at the time, which may account partly for such a sweeping edict...) The citizens of one city managed to band together to fight hard for the continuation of their beloved food stalls (called yatai) however, and managed to negotiate with GHQ and city officials for the survival of yatai. Now yatai are a major feature of nighttime Fukuoka. Here's a Japan Guide feature on the yatai of Fukuoka.


Fukuoka Travel: Food Stalls (Yatai)
www.japan-guide.com
About the food stalls (yatai) of Fukuoka.

Chicken teriyaki.... in miniature! Looks so delicious!

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Sun, 2015-04-12 14:31
Chicken teriyaki.... in miniature! Looks so delicious!


動画★鶏肉の作り方
chobiko-miniaturefood.com
 今まで作った作り方動画の記事を紹介します。Youtubeに動画をアップしてきましたが、数が増えると自分でもあの動画どこだっけ?と探すのが面倒に・・・せっかくなので整理ついでに、動画の解説もつけて記事を書いて整理します。

Back to mess with your minds again ^_^ Even if some young women in Japan are eat...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Fri, 2015-04-10 17:35
Back to mess with your minds again ^_^ Even if some young women in Japan are eating starvation-level diets. the same age group drives a lot of food fads. A really trendy thing in the last couple of years is American style pancakes, stacked up and loaded with toppings. The photo here is an offering from Denny's Japan (which operates independently from Denny's in the US). Apparently this style of pancake dish became popular when Japanese tourists encountered them at pancake houses in Hawaii. Now they are pretty much everywhere...and pancake enthusiasts, mostly young women, line up for sometimes an hour and more to get into the most popular pancake restaurants.

(Page on Denny's Japan site listing this dish, called Honey Berry Pancakes: http://www.dennys.jp/menu/dessert/honeyberrypancakes/ - it's 621 calories they say.)


Some pictures of Naomi Watanabe.

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-09 19:23
Some pictures of Naomi Watanabe.


One more: My main reason for posting the article about the calorie consumption...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-09 18:34
One more: My main reason for posting the article about the calorie consumption of young Japanese women was to make the point that you should not believe there is some kind of magic dust involved with Japanese food that accounts for the overall slimness of the population. The same article notes that that middle aged Japanese men are gaining weight - and there are many health issues related to that of course. There are many aspects of Japanese food and dietary habits, as well as lifestyle, that help people stay slim AND healthy, but you need to know what those are. Ramen, tempura, tonkatsu, Japanese style curry, sushi, etc. are all well known Japanese foods, but none are low-calorie or particularly "healthy". In moderation they're all great though!

A followup of sorts to my previous post about the low calorie intake of young Ja...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-09 17:41
A followup of sorts to my previous post about the low calorie intake of young Japanese women: Comedian, actress, TV personality, fashion model and designer Naomi Watanabe (27) is best known for doing Beyoncé parodies, but she's also known as being a plus-size model and a role model for curvier young girls. She modelled for a plus-size fashion magazine called la Farfa until recently, and has her own line of plus size fashions for young women, Punyus. That's her in the photo - she's also her own muse. (The link goes to the Punyus site.)

Watanabe used to do these "I have to lose weight" type of segments for TV shows a few years ago, but in recent years it looks like she's totally embraced her body and is never afraid to show it off. She's appeared as a sexy cat dancer along with other (slim) models in a commercial, walked runways, and so on. Also...they no longer tease her for her weight on these TV variety shows. It seems to me that she's purposefully changed her "character" to be positive and affirmative.

Naomi Watanabe is pretty unique though. There aren't that many not-slim young female entertainers or TV personalities to begin with (there are a few more middle aged and older ones). And except for her, almost every other not-stick-slim woman gets teased and commented on incessantly on TV and other media for their weight. (And it's not just by men either: other women are often very harsh on women who aren't slim.)

Finally: It's not like everyone is very slim in Japan. There are curvy, even overweight women around (young and old), and plus size clothing becoming more and more available. I would say that compared to when I was in my teens and 20s or so, there's actually a lot more acceptance of different body types, although there's still a lot of pressure to be slim, lose weight, etc. too. But then - what country (or should I say, what so-called "developed" country) doesn't put tons of pressure on women to stay slim or lose weight? And, what about the obesity problem that's prevalent in so many countries? There are no easy answers.


PUNYUS|渡辺直美がプロデュースするファッションブランドPUNYUS
punyus.jp
PUNYUS(ぷにゅず)は、「女の子の持つ感情を表現する」をテーマにジャンルに捉われない様々なスタイルを提案するブランド。豊富なサイズ展開が特徴で、フリーから6Lまでのサイズが揃う

Sometimes you just gotta hit a buffet a volonté asiatique #lifeinfrancethatsnotp...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-09 14:40
Sometimes you just gotta hit a buffet a volonté asiatique #lifeinfrancethatsnotparis

(a buffet a volonté asiatique is an all you can eat restaurant serving pan-E/SE Asian food of varying quality at reasonable prices. This one, a chain called O Panda, is not too bad.)


I periodically get questions about why Japanese women are so slim. And there was...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Thu, 2015-04-09 07:44
I periodically get questions about why Japanese women are so slim. And there was that diet book published some years ago that claimed Japanese women don't get fat OR old because Japanese food was so speclal etc. Well, this recent news story is probably the biggiest reason why many Japanese woman, especially young ones, are so slim: they are consuming less calories than their grandmothers and great-grandmothers did right after WWII - when many people were near starvation. They are also consuming less calories per day on average than people in North Korea.


Young Japanese women's average calory consumption less than just after WWII - 毎日新聞
mainichi.jp
For some years now, metabolic syndrome and other obesity-related issues have been discussed as socie...

I guess I lead more sheltered life than I realized, since I didn't know of this...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Wed, 2015-04-08 08:02
I guess I lead more sheltered life than I realized, since I didn't know of this Food Babe person (or maybe just vaguely) until I read this. http://www.vox.com/2015/4/7/8360935/food-babe

The web archive article linked from there about microwave ovens is priceless. The part about "Doctor" Masaharu Emoto and his water crystal pictures (did you know that saying good things to water like "peace!" and "love!" makes them form beautiful snowflake-like crystal, but saying bad things it makes it like "war!" and "stupid!" and "Hitler!" makes them form ugly crystals? OMG, right?) ...made me laugh out loud. He has been thoroughly discredited in Japan - or rather, just regarded as a nut case, and it's a mystery why his hocus-pocus "science" has attracted a worldwide audience. (His "doctorate", which is in "alternative medicine", is from some unaccredited online university, by the way. He does have a legitimate undergraduate degree apparently...in international relations.) He's even admitted in interviews that his books about water molecules or whatever are fantasy and fiction, unproven by any scientific methods, although he's careful to add that "someday they will be proven!" Right.

What is scary and sobering though is that both "Doctor" Emoto and the Food Babe person have large and loyal followers who are willing to believe in hocus pocus. I'm not sure what this says about our world.


Are Microwaves Safe?
archive.today
I never use a Microwave and here's why they are not safe

Most of the outdoor scenes in Neko Zamurai (Cat Samurai) are shot in Edo Wonderl...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Tue, 2015-04-07 18:59
Most of the outdoor scenes in Neko Zamurai (Cat Samurai) are shot in Edo Wonderland Nikko Edo Mura, an Edo period (1603-1868, but the park is mainly circa early 19th century) re-creation/theme park.

It is reported to be a bit cheesy but fun, especially if you go for one of the "experiences" (be an Edo era policeman, or a ninja, etc.) or dress up in period costume. (I've never been myself...not sure about the dressing up part, although I did once participate in a Star Trek experience and dress up as a circa first movie-era Starfleet captain..)

Their official mascot is Nyan-Mage, who is a Samurai Cat, not related to the Cat Samurai series however.


EDO WONDERLAND 日光江戸村
edowonderland.net

First local strawberries of the season

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Tue, 2015-04-07 14:18
First local strawberries of the season


If you liked the WORLD ORDER video I posted yesterday, here's one shot in my hom...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Mon, 2015-04-06 21:17
If you liked the WORLD ORDER video I posted yesterday, here's one shot in my home town. ^_^ "Welcome to Tokyo "was uploaded by the group shortly after the city was awarded the 2020 Olympics.


WORLD ORDER "Welcome to TOKYO"

WORLD ORDER official site: http://worldorder.jp/ Producer, Director: Genki Sudo/ Assistant Director, Editor: Kei Chikaura / 1st Camera: Miki Ogawa / 2nd Came...

Neko Zamurai (Cat Samurai) is a TV series about a ronin (out of work samurai) ca...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Sun, 2015-04-05 21:39
Neko Zamurai (Cat Samurai) is a TV series about a ronin (out of work samurai) called Kyutaro Madarame, who is hired to kill a "cursed" cat. He takes the job since he's desperate, but when he comes face to face with the cat it's love at first sight. So he takes the pure white cat, called Tamanojo, home...

Season 1 was a cult hit, and now the series is back for Season 2! It's a syndicated series, so check your local listings...or wherever you get your Japanese programs...

It's not a historically accurate period drama by any means (for example there are scenes that look like there were "cat cafes" in the Edo period, which there definitely weren't) but it's great for fans of cats, or samurai dramas. (There are some fun food bits in some episodes too.) The main cat playing Tamanojo, whose real name is Anago, is a rescue cat, and its trainer credits Kazuki Sawamura, who plays Kyutaro, for his sensitive handing of Anago as a large part of the series' success.

http://nekozamurai.info/


This new video by WORLD ORDER for the Japan Association of Travel Agents feature...

Facebook JustBento-JustHungry - Sun, 2015-04-05 19:27
This new video by WORLD ORDER for the Japan Association of Travel Agents features great scenery and delicious looking food from Kyushu. It has Kumamon and other gotouchi chara in supporting roles too!


WORLD ORDER "THIS IS LIFE" JATA 九州篇

WORLD ORDERを起用して、(一社)日本旅行業協会が日本の良さを訴求するミュージックビデオの第4弾。 熊本県、大分県、福岡県を舞台にした2015年度キャンペーンの作品が公開です。 日本にはまだ、あなたの知らない場所がたくさんあるはず。 さあ「ニッポンを、遊びつくせ!」 日本旅行業協会とWORLD ORDER...

some of my flickr photos