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Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences

Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences


 

Whether you have visited Japan or simply experienced the wonders of its cuisine, you have most likely been inspired to reproduce a favorite dish at home. We invite you to take the initiative and learn how to use these traditional Japanese cooking tools to help recreate a treasured memory.

Learn about exclusive traditional Japanese Cooking Tools

There are many unique and traditional cooking tools in Japan. From simple household use to exclusively crafted tools for top chefs, there are many options and famous brands to choose from. If you wish to create restaurant quality food, these tools are advantageous! Furthermore, what is complimentary is that these tools can be good souvenirs. Made of steel, clay or bamboo, some of these tools, while possibly rugged in appearance, may decorate your shelves. Common examples of traditional cooking tools described below can give you an insight.

Hou-chou (Kitchen Knives)

Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences


 

The top chefs all around the world respect Japanese kitchen knives as they represent one of the highest quality products in the world. Japanese are famous for superior steelwork, producing high purity steel with a unique technique of layering hard and soft steels. Japan has a long history of making exceptional steel swords and this has most certainly helped to establish a position of Japanese kitchen knives to be among the world's finest in quality.

A typical Japanese kitchen knife has a single bevel edge not like Western styles that have a double bevel edge. The single bevel edge is normally on the right side so a left-handed person should specifically purchase a left-handed knife. There are many types of knives like "De-ba" for cutting fish and hard ingredients, "Usu-ba" to cut vegetables. "Yanagi-ba" with a long and thin blade is for cutting raw fish for Sushi. To prevent the fish from becoming squashed, chefs cut raw fish with one long drawing stroke rather than pressing.

Most interesting is not just the quality of the knife itself but the techniques used by the master chefs utilizing the tools of their trade. A vast number of knife techniques apply for Japanese cooking. Hidden cuts are made in food to make them easier to cook or eat. Decorative cuttings such as turning carrots into flowers add a visual element of seasonality to the presentation of the dish.

Donabe (Earthenware Pot)

Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences


 

Donabe means clay pot in Japanese and is mostly used to cook hot pot meals like Shabu-shabu. Rice cooked in a Donabe is very delicious and are used at many discerning Japanese restaurants. There are different types of clay used for Japanese Donabe and respectively produced in several locations in Japan. One of most popular Donabe is Iga-yaki, produced in the area of Iga from the Mie prefecture with over 1,000 years of history. Iga-yaki style applies clay from sedimentary layers originally located on the bed of Lake Biwa. The clay contains rich minerals from about 4 million years ago, and this makes Iga's Donabe tremendously resistant to heat.

The pottery's material property is super porous with low thermal conductivity and indeed contributes great benefits when cooking with a Donabe by building up heat slowly with a high heat retention once it gets to a peak. This slow cooking process results in a great and scrumptious meal with a rich and abundant flavor.

Donabe is without a doubt a common item for most Japanese households and are available in various sizes.

Oni-Oroshi (White radish grater)

Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences


 

An Oni-oroshi is used to make grated white radish called "Daikon Oroshi". Grated white radish is consumed in many ways in Japanese cuisine and is a must for certain dishes. It has a refreshing and spicy taste complimented by a mild sweetness. Served with Tempura, grilled fish, noodles, hot pot and many other meals it positively adds that extra appetizing taste. Oni-oroshi means "Devil-grater" because of the sharp blade lines that look like devil's teeth. There are of course other types of graters but bamboo is preferred if you desire a coarse finish. The bamboo material has low heat conductivity so the heat does not intensify while in use. Because of its coarse finish, the juiciness and fiber of the radish remains after grating. With Oni-oroshi, the spicy taste of the radish is less intense than the radish grated with normal metal or plastic graters. It is also popular to use Oni-oroshi to grate other foods like apples and Japanese yams.

Japanese cooking lessons in English

Because of today's Washoku (Japanese cuisine) boom, there is a high demand for Japanese cooking lessons in English. Most of the major cities in Japan offer a variety of cooking lessons.

Explore and try the lessons highlighted below to obtain a fulfilling introduction to Japanese cooking.

Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences

  • Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences Washocook run well established classes in Tokyo and Kanagawa. The lessons enable one to cook Japanese home meals within 20 minutes using seasonal and fresh ingredients. Additionally, if you are keen to become an instructor, a licensed teachers school is also available.

    For more information, please visit here.
  • Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences Cooking Sun have studios in Tokyo and Kyoto. The lessons, offered in the authentic setting of Kyoto, are conducted in a Japanese traditional town house. The Tokyo studio offers lessons on how to cook a Wagyu Kaiseki course menu from an appetizer to an enchanting desert while the Kyoto studio offer lessons to prepare an assorted tasty meal box. There are 5-day intensive courses and private lessons where you can learn from a professional chef.

    For more information, please visit here.
  • Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences Tsukiji Cooking is located next to the world's largest, Tsukiji Fish Market in central Tokyo. The school can take you on a tour to the Tsukiji outer market to obtain fresh ingredients as part of the course before it commences. A cooking class without the tour is also available.

    For more information, please visit here.
  • Beyond Sushi. Japanese Cooking Experiences search for more cooking class tours, please visit here.


 

All of the above classes are easily booked on-line. Learning about useful food ingredients like Japanese seasonings and how to make fish stocks are skills that will serve you beyond making sushi and will inspire your future cooking.

Information is provided as a courtesy to users of this website. Though the JNTO endeavors to ensure the information is accurate, users of the information are to act on such using their own judgement and at their own risk. Neither the JNTO nor any holder of copyright to the information shall be held responsible in any way whatsoever for any loss or misunderstanding, either direct or indirect, that is incurred as a result of utilizing the information.

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