Yaki-soba / Yaki-udon

Main, Noodles, pork, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Yaki-soba is Japanese stir fried noodles with vegetables and pork. I have never met a person who did not like this one of the most popular food in Japan. Because of its simple ingredients and recipe, it is also popular menu in the market called ‘yatai’.  Wherever ‘yatai’ are held, you can definitely find someone who sells yaki-soba.

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yaki-soba bento

Before I show you how to make it, please let me talk about noodles. In the UK I often think it is almost impossible to get good noodles for yaki-soba. I have been struggling to get good noodles for long time. Egg noodles are fine, ramen noodles are also fine but they are so far from perfect. Something is missing somewhere. Then I notice some great tips to obtain perfect noodles… from SPAGHETTI! I notice spaghetti can exactly be what noodles for yaki-soba should be. If you can not find good noodles, then please try spaghetti. The tip is to cook spaghetti 5 more minutes longer than the time its package says. It should also be noted that Udon Noodles are also good option (but in that case the dish will be called yaki-udon, not yaki-soba).

Of course yaki-soba is very popular for bento menu too. When I was a high school student my dad made me yaki-soba bento in the weekend. (I had classes in every Saturday morning so making my bento on Saturday was sometimes my dad’s role. And my family had a strange rule about Saturday dinner; my dad must had made okonomiyaki! Ah, what okonomiyaki lovers/saucy family!)

In fact I made yaki-soba for bento last week and it was quite nice. My husband really liked it. I hope you can enjoy this casual and family warming dish!

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[Ingredients] 2 servings

  • Spaghetti for 2 people / Udon Noodles for 2 people
  • 1/2 spring cabbage
  • 100g pork (ignore if you are vegetarian)
  • 1/2 green pepper
  • 100g beans sprout
  • Okonomiyaki sauce
  • A pinch of back pepper
  • A pinch of aonori (nori powder) as a topping
  • A pinch of katsuobushi as a topping

 

Swapping the pork with sea foods such as prawns or squid is also good idea. Some people put a fried egg on top as a topping. That is a also lovely idea. Red pepper, carrot or onion can also give yaki-soba more colours and flavour.  Please look for your favourite ingredients through some trials!

 

[Method]

  1. Boil the water for spaghetti. Cook the spaghetti for extra 5 more minutes than the time its package says.
  2. Roughly chop cabbage, pork and green pepper.
  3. Pour 2 tbs oil into a frying pan and stir fry pork, and add cabbage, green pepper and beans sprout.
  4. Add spaghetti and mix very well.
  5. Add black pepper and Okonomiyaki sauce. Make sure the taste, you may need to add some ketchup.
  6. Serve with some toppings (if you would like), or put them into your bento box.

 

Enjoy!xx

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Bento of This Week

Blog, Ideas for bento

These are my bento of this week!

 

Monday

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Tuesday

I forgot to take photo of bento on Tuesday, but I had a same lunch as well. This is my lunch.

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  • Sandwiches (cucumber, tomato, ham and brie)

 

Wednesday

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  • Yaki-soba

 

Thursday

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Friday

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  • Sandwiches (cucmber & tomato & egg, potato salad)
  • Apple

 

What did you make for your bento this week?

I hope we can share new idea from this article. xx

Bento of Last Week

Blog, Ideas for bento

Monday

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Tuesday

My husband took a holiday and we went to the picnic. In japan, in spring, people have a picnic under the cherry trees. We went to the park and fortunately found a cherry tree! We had a nice time.

 

Wednesday

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Thursday

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  • Sticky rice
  • Tamago-yaki (v)
  • Tuna and tomato spaghetti
  • Boiled broccoli
  • Korean carrot salad
  • Fried chicken

 

Friday

I was sick on Friday morning, so I could not make bento… 😥

 

I hope this week will be better than last week!xx

 

Tamago-yaki (v)

Ideas for bento, Starter, Vegetarian

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Hi!

Tamago-yaki is a famous bento food. Tamago-yaki is, of course, tasty when it is hot but it is still good when it is cold.  It takes only 5 minutes to make so it will never bother you in early morning.

Usually, Japanese people use a square pan to make tamago-yaki, but you can use a small frying pan instead. Maybe you feel difficult at first, you can make it after you practice several times. If it’s too difficult, please try to use 3 or 4 eggs. The layers will be thick so you can easily roll the eggs.

Please try!xx

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[Ingredients]

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoon of sugar
  • a teaspoon of soya sauce
  • 1 teaspoon mirin
  • a pinch of salt

 

[Methods]

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Pour 1 tablespoon oil into a pan.
  3. When the pan becomes hot remove the oil with kitchen paper.
  4. Pour 1/3 of eggs into the pan.
  5. Stir fry eggs a little bit as you make scrambled eggs.
  6. When the eggs start to be cooked, start to rolled egg from the edge.
  7. Move the eggs to the start point to roll.
  8. Repeat from 4-7 two more times.
  9. Turn off the cookers. But leave tamago-yaki on the pan for a few minutes, then eggs will be cooked completely.

 

 

 

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I use chopsticks when I make tamago-yaki, but equipments are not important. Even if you break the surface, do not worry because you can easily fix it. Just cook the surface well the everything will be okay!

 

You can also enjoy to put something inside tamago-yaki. For example, finely chopped spring onion, shiitake mushrooms, boiled spinach or cooked eel.

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Mazekomi Rice

Ideas for bento, Side dish

Hi, thank you for visiting my website!
And I appreciate all the lovely comments you left last week. S__4775940

 

Thank you for getting interested in the details of my bento, @dosirakbento. Dosirakbento, in his/her Blog, mentioned the powder I use on rice. So today I will show how to use this powder (mazekomi) in a right way.

 

First, I will explain what that powder is. The powder I use for the bento is mazekomi powder, which adds flavors to plain rice. What makes mazekomi powder special is it has real pieces of vegetables, pickles or etc (and there are a lot of variations). The dried pieces are already seasoned and becomes back to the original shape in the fresh hot sticky rice.

There is another type of powder called ‘furikake’ which adds flavor to rice but does not have real dried pieces so it does not matter if you use it for hot rice or cold rice. (Always tasty!)

The bland I always chose is ‘mishima’, which focus on people’s health and try to use real/original ingredients. You can get one from Japan centre in London. Please check. Although there are various choices, I always choose ‘ume na meshi’ (red plum pickles and hiroshima-na pickles mixed rice), which is my hudband’s favorite!

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Please note that this product has fish powder inside. If you have an allergy or are vegetarian, make sure your choice is safe for you.

Then let’s see how to use this.

 

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[Ingredients]

  • 2 tablespoon of mazekomi powder
  • 3 bowls of fresh sticky rice

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[Method]

  1. Put mazekomi powder into rice. Make sure rice is very hot.
  2. Mix mazekomi powder and rice a lot.
  3. Leave it for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Ready to eat!

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You can eat it straight, or making omusubi/onigiri is also nice!

 

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Maybe you will notice that you need less powder compared to furikake because it is seasoned stronger (means salty). Be careful not to use too much mazekomi powder which is easy mistake to make for the first time!

And if you use mazekomi powder for bento, it is better to put some when rice is hot. Because you do not mix well in this way, it will take a bit longer for the dried pieces go back to original on sticky rice, but it doesn’t matter. When you open your bento in lunch time…your rice will be really tasty! Although it is worth noting that rice should be clold when you put the lid on your bento for the food safety.

Thank you for reading today too and enjoy your bento life!!xx

Bento of this week

Blog, Ideas for bento

Hi!

These are bento I made for my husband this week!

 

Monday

No bento due to his work.

 

Tuesday

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  • Tomato sauce spaghetti

 

Wednesday

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  • Pork shoga-yaki (Stir fried pork and onion with ginger paste)
  • Tamago-yaki
  • cut tomato
  • sticky rice

 

ThursdayS__4833287

 

Friday

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  • Fukushinzuke fried rice

 

I hope we can share my idea for the bento from these.

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!xx

Bento of last week

Blog, Ideas for bento

Hi, these were my husband’s bento I made last week

 

Monday

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  • Sticky rice
  • German sausage
  • Stir fried beans sprout
  • Tamago yaki
  • Cut tomato

 

Tuesday

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  • Sticky rice
  • Grilled mackerel
  • Ham katsu
  • Fukushin zuke pickles
  • Tomato & parmigiano cheese

 

Wednesday

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  • BLT sandwich
  • Tuna mayo sandwich

 

Thursday

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  • Sticky rice
  • Stir fried vegetable & tofu & German sausage
  • Fukushin zuke pickles

 

Friday

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  • Ketchup rice

 

What should I make this week??

Ham Katsu

Main, pork

Hi,s__4669443

I made ham katsu this week. My husband had been curious about this unique Japanese food since he knew it from Japanese TV drama Shinya Shokudo. Of course, he loved it and it became his favourite menu for his bento.

 

 

To make Japanese stereotype ham katsu, there is only one key; do not choose expensive ham! Ham katsu was invented when Japanese people were poor after world war 2. Because ham was cheaper than meat, people started to make katsu with ham. Mothers at that time made so much efforts to make their family satisfied with cheap ingredients. Although many people love ham katsu with full of memories of their childhood, on the other hand, there are  still some elderly people who can not eat ham katsu because that reminds them their sad and poor past. Well, fortunately, the TV drama introduced ham katsu as a traditional food which was the symbol of the great relationship between brothers. If you have ham in your fridge, then you should try tonight!

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[Ingredients]

  • Ham
  • Egg
  • Flour
  • Panko (Breadcrumb)
  • Mustard

[Method]

  1. Cut the ham into your favourite size. If the ham is too thin, pile up and make it thick.
  2. Cover the ham with flour, put the ham into the egg and cover the ham with panko. Follow this order.
  3. Deep fry the ham in the oil (200 degrees). The ham is already cooked so just make sure the surface is very crispy.
  4. Serve ham katsu with thinly chopped cabbage and a teaspoon of mustard.

Enjoy!xx

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Maki-zushi for Setsubun 

Main, Rice, Seafood, Winter

Hi in my blog I have kept saying that Japanese people do not eat sushi every day, because sushi is a kind of special food even to them.

Setsubun, 2nd February is one of the important day for Japanese to hope their luck of the year. On the day, most of the sushi restaurant or even supermarket which sells sushi are very busy.

The kind of sushi they eat in setsubun is makizushi.  I made some this year.

Salmon, potato salad and avocado makizushi. So easy😊

[Ingredients]

[methods]

  1. Set nori on the cooking foil or cooking sheet. They will help you to roll sushi easily.
  2. Put some vinegar rice on nori, and a bit of  wasabi and mayonnaise on it.
  3. Put potato salad, salmon, mushed avocado in a line on rice. It is better not to put them in a middle, but closer to the edge of start point to roll.
  4. Roll the sushi.
  5. If you cut your makizushi, put some water on the surface of your knife. So that your knife will move more smooth.

 

Please try this easy makizushi!xx

Jacket Potato 

Blog, Ideas for bento, Main, Vegetables

Hi! Long time no see😋

I have been quite busy for a last few weeks. I am happy to come back again.

I made jacket potato today for lunch.  This was my first try but they were amazing.😊

Jacket potato

The recipe was really easy!!
Just leave well-washed medium potatoes in the oven (doesn’t have to be preheated, set 180°-200°) for 50 min- 1 h.

The fillings were

  • tuna mayo & onion
  • mushrooms & bacon sauté.

Both of them have cheddar cheese inside. Maybe I will try Japanese food for filling next time! And it was good for bento too.

Jacket potato bento

Lovely lunch 🍴❤️