You know it’s the new year in Australia when the skies are blue and the sun’s unforgiving. It’s summer here in Australia. While some parts of the world are buried under warm duvets, Australia’s baking me alive. It’s been obscenely hot where days can get as hot as 40 degrees centigrade and it’s not letting up. As a girl from tropics, I’m generally used to this heat, but the heat’s been killing me that I thought I needed something cool to eat. Thank god I remembered this cool dish from last year’s summer anime, Kumamiko — Girl meets Bear! Machi’s Mizukake Gohan is a welcome relief during this horrible summer.
Last night, a bowl of katsudon won me over.
Well, to be honest, a handsome Russian skater eating a bowl of katsudon stole my heart.
For all the glorious things that happened in my life, this blog, Punked Noodle, random as it is, has changed my life in both crazy and amazing ways. I remember buying this domain 13 years ago thinking that it’ll be a site to experiment with graphic design. It was the big thing back then, before everybody transformed their sites to blogs and portfolios. I realised that I enjoyed blogging about food a lot hence, ten years ago, this site changed and became my little online journal about my gourmand life. Since then, I’ve met friends, gone to places, cooked and ate the most amazing food I have ever imagined. I never expected to hold on to this for ten years. Slow and steady as it is, I’m happy that I still have this space to share my love for food and travelling to people!
In celebration, I decided to share a cake! A sushi cake!
Wai! I managed to have time to make another dish from a manga! This time, I’m in the mood for spice and some Kanagawa love! I made Chikuwa Curry from Umimachi Diary!
Late last year, I was hooked on Akimi Yoshida’s Umimachi Diary. It’s a lovely story about three sisters whose lives changed as they welcomed their youngest half-sister, Suzu, in their home. It’s set in the lovely seaside town of Kamakura and the manga has its ways of featuring Kamakura and Kanagawa specialties such as shirasu (dried whitebait) and processed fish, in this case, chikuwa. Continue Reading
Did you ever have that one vegetable you sincerely hated?
I hated okra with every slimy fibre of its being. This was one of my mom’s favorite veggies and on a night when we didn’t prepare much food, she always had some form of boiled okra on our table. As a kid, I did not enjoy its mushy slimy texture. Even when I was hooked on natto, I just could not seem to love okra. It was bland, mushy, and unnecessarily slimy. It wasn’t until I tasted the okra at my friend’s house that I realised that our family had misunderstood okra. My friend’s okra in ponzu was a fresh and simple dish that brightened even the slimiest lady finger.
My love for cooking manga has reached its peak in the last few months as I have found that my best stress relief from this hectic period in my life is cooking. I’ve done a couple of recipes from food manga before and for a while I entertained having a separate blog just for recipes I tried from manga. And then I realised I’m much too old to handle all the blogs. As it is, I’m struggling to keep two, let alone keep up with tumblr like I used to! Hence, I’ve decided to put them all here in my personal food/travel blog of sorts. It’s under a new section I’ve boringly called Manga Cooking!
Obviously, Manga Cooking’s about recipes I’ve seen and read from various manga I’ve been reading over the last whatever. It may be recipes featured in food manga or just some meal related to manga. As usual, I’m not sure how often I’ll be doing this. I’ve actually made an effort for a while to try one manga dish from a manga I’ve been reading per month and hopefully I have the energy to actually write entries for it.
I’ve always dreamt of ekiben journeys ever since I read it in Sakurai Kan and Hayase Jun’s Ekiben Hitoritabi, a manga about a guy’s journey around Japan one ekiben at a time. Ekiben’s a portmanteau for eki (station) and bentou (boxed lunch) and some stations in Japan would have special ekiben featuring either the specialty of that city or region. Specialties can range from culinary techniques to ingredients available to that region.
Now, I won’t bore you with the intricacies of Ekiben. There’s a Beginning Japanology episode for that. So go watch it and perhaps get on board with me as I share my first ekiben experience.