Saturday, October 03, 2015

foodie friday in kobe

spice haul...fenugreek seed, tamarind & curry leaves♡  #kobehalal #kitanogrocers #kobe #hyogo #神戸 #兵庫 Satoshi's went on a trip for work, so I have a couple of days to myself.

Thursday, it rained all day, so I stayed indoors, reading and just chilling out.

Yesterday, it was sunny, so I headed out to Kobe.

In the morning it was chilly, so I was wearing a long sleeve cotton shirt and a trench coat but by the time I reached Kobe it was blazing! I ended up carrying my coat around.

I had envisioned buying some baked goods at Ça Marche, but apparently they are closed this whole!

Bummed, I went a couple of doors down to Kitano Grocers to check out their spices. I picked up some seedless tamarind and fenugreek seed.

The lady at the check-out was surprised with my purchases and said, "most Japanese don't buy these items".

I mentioned to her that they were used in a curry recipe book I have, so I wanted to try the recipes with them.

She was very happy to hear this.

Then I went down the street to Kobe Halal to see what other spices they had. I picked up some curry leaves and raw peanuts (not shown).

Everything was super reasonably these shops!

beef stew omelette♡  #l'ami #kobe #hyogo #洋食 #ラミ #神戸 Since it was nearing eleven-ish, I headed down the hill to L'Ami for lunch.

This tiny shop only has a "U" shaped counter with about 15 seats.

When I got there half the seats were already filled, and everyone seated were female.

I ordered the beef stew omelette...864 yen (tax included).

The omelette is fluffy with lots of sliced onions in it. The beef in the stew was so tender. The demi glace sauce was a little sweet.

Lunch also came with a small salad, miso soup, rice, some tsukemono (pickles) and a slice of orange.

The food comes out pretty quick and the turnover quite fast.

There are some items that Satoshi would like on the menu, we'll be back!

1st time trying shakerato (iced espresso that is shaken like a martini)♡ @mr.frank_kosuke   #coffeestandfrank #shakerato #kobe #hyogo After such a big lunch, I wanted to walk around a bit, so I went in search of Coffee Stand Frank.

It was about 10 minutes away from L'Ami.

This is also a tiny shop, where you stand at the counter and drink your coffee.

Not knowing what it was, I ordered an iced shakerato...330 yen.

Turns out it is a espresso, that is shaken like a martini.

Apparently it is supposed to be shaken with some simple syrup, but when the barista asked if I wanted it sweetened, I told him I didn't.

Different but good! I'll be back.

Fun Foodie Friday...enjoy your weekend!

3-4-3 Sannomiya-machi
Chuo-ku, Kobe
Phone: 078.327.7225
Closed Mondays
Lunch: 11:00-14:45, Dinner: 17:00-21:30

Coffee Stand Frank
3-1-11 Sakaemachi-dori
Chuo-ku, Kobe
Phone: n/a
Mondays-Fridays: 7:00-20:00, Saturdays: 10:00-20:00, Sundays & Holidays: 10:00-19:00

Friday, October 02, 2015

things I'm liking (kinda disliking)

got to try a sneak peek of the new fruit crush tea, thanks starbucks☆english breakfast tea, dried fruits and some type of sweetener...not bad  #japan #fruitcrush #tea #starbucks It's been awhile since I did a "things I'm liking" post so here goes....Starbucks Fruit Crush Tea.

I had entered to win a free sample of their new Fruit Crush Tea which starts October 1st on their menu...and they sent me an e-ticket to try it before it went on their menu! whoo!

The base of this drink is an English Breakfast tea. There is a sweet (almost sickly) syrup and dried fruit bits.

Kind of reminded me of the sweet-tart flavor of hibiscus tea, but sweeter.

I think if they cut back on the amount of syrup, this would be nice.

I'm glad I got to try this.

single serving size is 2...maybe♡  #legoûter #japan #oreo #coffee Have you tried the Brownie Batter Oreos?

The aroma when you open the package smells just like brownies.

The cookie doesn't match the sweetness of the cream though.

Oh well, at least I got to try this one too.

shine muscat(left) has a different sweetness than the seedless pione(right) both are delicious!  #grapes #japan #葡萄 #ピオーネ #シャインマスカット During this time of year there are different grapes that are in season.

One is the pione (pee-oh-nay) (in the photo on the right). They are rather large orbs and this particular variety is seedless. Super sweet like grape candy. The skins of these grapes are tough and quite bitter, so we usually peel them while eating them.

The one on the left was new to me, it's called shine muscat. The skins of the grape are soft enough to be eaten. These were seedless also and a different sweetness than the pione.

I'm glad the fruit stand that I shop at had both of these on sale, it was nice trying them.

1st time trying Quinn popcorn♡ Love Quinn Popcorn.

I had seen this at a couple of food shops here in Japan...but guess what?!

They were selling it for 3 times the price that it is sold for in the U.S.

Actually for some reason, I had thought they weren't US made but European.

When I was in Hawaii, I found out they were being sold at Target (my fave place to shop!)

For a box they cost about $5 with two packets in it.

I guess that would be considered pricey, but, I thought it was worth it because they don't use all the "junk" ingredients that most microwave popcorns use.

Also, a good thing about this popcorn is that you can "nuke" it, or if you don't have a microwave oven, you can pop this on the stove!

So far, we've tried the Butter & Salt flavor...which was nice.

I also bought Vermont Maple & Salt and Parmesan & Rosemary...which we'll be working through this winter.

What have you been enjoying lately?

Thursday, October 01, 2015

garam masala pork and apples

I usually like crisp apples but since this one wasn't, I tried @familycirclemag garam masala pork & apples recipe...not bad needs tweaking...also made pumpkin soup   #dinner #soup #familycirclemag #garammasala #pork #apple #japan #pumpkin I don't know about you but I don't like soggy apples.

Whenever I run into one, I always try to bake with them.

Yesterday, gave me the perfect chance to try this recipe I copied from "Family Circle".

Garam Masala Pork and Apples : Serves 4
3 tablespoons canola oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon cumin
2 sliced Honeycrisp apples
1 sliced red onion
1 can (15oz) garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 teaspoons garam masala
4 bone-in pork chops (8oz each)

Combine canola oil, salt, pepper, ground ginger, and cumin. In prepared sheet pan, combine apples, onion and garbanzo beans.
Toss with 2 tbsp of the oil mixture.
Combine garam masala with remaining oil mixture and brush over pork chops.
Arrange chops over vegetables and roast at 450F (230C) for 18 minutes. Broil 2 minutes.

NOTES: I didn't have Honeycrisp apples, and used the soggy one that I did have. I also couldn't get bone-in pork chops and just used what I could find.

I would cover this with foil while roasting, since the onions were still on the raw side, then take the foil off to put everything under the broiler.

Flavorwise, I liked this...I'll try this again.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

tartan nady

sapna lunch (salad, tandoori chicken, mutton spinach curry, naan & chai) with friends♡  #tartannady #toyonaka #osaka #curry #タータンナディ #豊中 #大阪 #カレー Yesterday, I met up with Fiona and her husband WR for lunch at Tartan Nady.

They are moving back to Singapore soon, and with their busy schedule, I was happy they made some time to meet up.

We all ordered the sapna lunch...salad, tandoori chicken, our choice of curry (we all chose mutton spinach), naan and a beverage.

The naan was on the sweet side but everything else was tasty!

I hope Fiona and WR have a safe trip back and that we'll re-connect in Singapore or in Japan again.

Take care you two!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

the winner is

celebrating our blogaversary♡patisserie haré's fig tarte & haré bear #blogaversary #patisseriehare #ikeda #osaka #japan Yesterday, we celebrated our blogaversary with cakes from Patisserie Hare. It had been some time since we've been back so I thought it was nice to re-connect with them.

I had their fig tarte. This had a nice custard and coffee gelee in the middle, as well as sweet figs.

Satoshi had their bear cake, which I've written about here.

the winner is... On to the giveaway winner.

Can I just say that I loved reading all your comments?!

I hope you will all be able to visit or re-visit the places in Japan that are on your lists!

and now to what you've all waited for..

we picked a's Mona!

Please email me your snail mail address so I can send you your care package.

I'll post a photo of what was in the box after I know it has reached Mona.

Thanks again for participating and for helping us celebrate a milestone blogaversary!

Monday, September 28, 2015

we're 10

mosaic10yrblog Looking back, the past 10 years have relatively been a blast.

Sure, there have been ups and downs with real life stuffs but for the most part, blogging has become my passion.

We've made a lot of friends over the years.

I hope to be able to share more stories with you in the coming years.

Thanks for being a part of the adventure.

Sunday, September 27, 2015


A night in a smoking room was not the best accommodation, but what were we to do? They were fully booked. On the other hand, I made Satoshi promise to always get a non-smoking room from here on out.

After checking-out, we walked to our first destination, the Toyota Museum.

IMG_3392 Along the way, we made friends with this guy. He was sitting in front of a temple, we said "good morning" and he insisted on giving us a hug.

IMG_3393 We arrived near the museum early and decided to get some breakfast at a coffee shop called Happy End.

I had a Nagoya favorite, Ogura toast. I've made this in the past, but wanted to try the "real deal"....450 yen

They put a lot of sweet bean paste on their!

Satoshi just had buttered toast, his toast also came with a hard boiled egg....350 yen

In Nagoya, they are known to give you more breakfast than you order...nice!

IMG_3397 We "thought" it wouldn't be too busy at the Museum...wrong, there was a massive line! a very chaotic massive line.

You would think places like these would have lining up down to a science already...nope! boy, did Satoshi chew out the guy in charge of the line we were in...definitely rare to see him so peeved.

I was amazed with this museum. It starts out with the history of Toyota.

Thing I learned was that Toyota actually started out with the invention of automated weaving machines not cars.

They show you how people weaved before automation and then they also show you all the machines in action.

IMG_3404 Then when you move to the car area, they show you how Toyota invented their cars.

They took apart a Ford to learn how cars were made.

Gear shifts, brakes, wooden body enthusiasts would definitely have a blast here.

IMG_3415 From this museum you can walk about 10 minutes down the street to the Noritake museum.

This paled in comparison to the Toyota museum.

For one thing, no photos allowed.

And another thing is that most of the explanations are by video, no real demonstrations...meh!

It was getting late so we headed to the station for a late lunch at Kitchen Nagoya before making our way back to Osaka.

This was where we got most of our Nagoya food fixes.

IMG_3420 Miso katsu and ebi fry for Satoshi.

In Nagoya they use hatcho miso (a red miso), so their sauce is quite dark and rich.

IMG_3422 I got their sampler (mini miso katsu, an ebi fry and some tebasaki (chicken wings)). This also came with some edamame and hiyayakko (cold tofu).

We also tried Kinshachi beer, Aichi's craft beer.

IMG_3417 Blue label is a Pilsner.

IMG_3418 Akamiso is an Alt bier (German for old beer, which refer to the brewing technique) that has hints of red miso.

Both were good with these foods, though the alt beer was quite bitter.

IMG_3423 We also tried Nagoya cochin pudding. Dense custard pudding made from the eggs of Nagoya's brand chickens, good!

It was a great Silver Week. We were blessed with great weather (for once! usually we have a couple of bad weather days during our trips) and we got to do a lot and of course, eat a lot.

I hope you enjoyed our adventure as much as we did.

Happy End
3-5 Noritakeshinmachi
Nishi-ku, Nagoya

Kitchen Nagoya
1-1-4 Meieki, inside of Umaimondori
Nakamura-ku, Nagoya
Phone: 052.561.6669
Hours: 10:00-22:30