Friday, November 3, 2023


​after learning about Rokumon - the special train in Nagano which runs from Friday to Sunday as a restaurant train, I wanted to experience this to celebrate a birthday in our family.

They have retrofitted the train with chairs and tables resembling like a restaurant.  It starts from Nagano Train station and ends at Karuizawa.

Along the way it stops at 2 places where we got off briefly to see what to buy. 

The next stop was a town with some music going.

The last stop is at Karuizawa where we saw the area where the Emperor waits for his train.  The nice room has beautiful Japanese paintings.  Then it goes back.  But we decided to stay on so we could shop a little at the Outlet.

Sunday, July 31, 2022


the smoked duck breast you can buy in some specialty stores or nice complete supermarket #duckdinner #nycfoodphotographer


Combine 1/3 c rice vinegar

1/3c water

1/2 tsp salt

1TB sugar

Mix it in a bowl and add 12 cut in half cherry tomatoes to marinate 

The Duck

Sometimes it’s good to make a mistake.  I pulled some meat from my fridge that I thought was plain duck breast in a package.  But when it was time to cook it, I had a smoked duck breast instead!

What to do? Since I was ready to make a duck teriyaki and had bought the ingredients for the rice and vegetables to serve it with, I did not give up making close to the intention I had.

I made the smoked duck turn into ham!  Yes! I have done it before scoring the skin and making a fruit base ham glaze.  This time I used honey and some soy sauce just to season the sweetness. (1-1/2 TB honey to 1TB soy sauce mixed well)

Smear the mixture all over the duck.  Place it in a little pan line with foil on a rack.  I happen to have a small rack with a small pan I found in Amazon.  Comes handy cooking for 1 or 2.  Very useful even for heating croissant to a crisp.

I place the breast of the rolled smoked duck with glaze in a preheated 450F degree oven.  Cooked it 6 minutes on each 3 sides.  Set aside when done.

the Rice with sweet potatoes

The Rice:

Follow instructions of your rice cooker for sushi rice.  Or if you do not have a rice cooker,  then you can combine:

360 ml rice

450 ml water

1/3 tsp salt

1 Kombu piece about 2 inch square.

1 medium size Japanese sweet potato 

(They are red skinned with yellow interior)

Clean the sweet potato and cut it into cubes - 1/2 inch cubes or 3/4 inch is fine.

Put on top of the rice with water mixture and Kombu.  Turn rice cooker on.  It will take about 18 minutes to cook.

Soon it gets done, remove 3/4 of the sweet potato on a dish.  Remove the Kombu and fold in the rice with the sweet potato carefully.


I used 2 Japanese style leek/scallion and cut 10 slices but not all the way through until the 10th slice.

Repeat about 4 times for each Japanese leek/scallion

In hot pan, add about 3TB of oil till hot.  Add the cut leek/scallion.  Brown on 3-4 sides and set aside.

complete dinner


Dish rice out on to plate and put half of the sweet potato on top and shake some toasted sesame seeds on top.

Slice the ham-duck and arrange in the side.  Decorate the scallions and marinated cherry tomatoes wherever you want to present them.  Serve!

I did all this in 1 hour.

Wednesday, July 27, 2022


​I bought two 1/2 inch bone-in pork chops.

I seasoned it with salt and pepper for about 15 minutes.

Then I found a bottled Teriyaki sauce in my pantry.  I used about 1/3 cup and poured it in a bowl to hold my pork chops and coated it well on each side.  I left it for a minute in one side and then turned it over for another 3 minutes.

Put the pork chops on a rack in a cooking sheet pan lined with foil for east cleaning.

Broil 6 minutes in hot broiler for 6 minutes in one side and turn over for another 4-5 minutes on the other side.  Set aside.

the grilled pork choos

Meantime, heat about 4TB of olive oil in a little pot.

When hot add 2 cloves of minced garlic.

Sauté for just a minute to render the flavor.

Add half a red pepper chopped and sauté another minute.

Add 3 cups of frozen corn kernels.

Mix to cook for 3-5 minutes until corn is hot.

Add 2 TB minced parsley and season with sea salt.  Mix well till parsley is nice and bright green and add 1TB of butter.

corn mixture

Now plate adding any green vegetable you happen to have.  We had left over broccolini. 

how to plate it

Hope you enjoy your dinner as much as we did tonight with little effort.

Sunday, July 3, 2022

Lobsters for Summer

It’s 4th of July tomorrow.  I came across live lobsters and female at that!  I like the females because of their eggs and tomalley. These were delicious!

I bought the 1-3/4 lb ones and brought it home.  In a big pot, I placed a colander or steamer rack.  Soon as the water boiled which I filled before the rack, I placed the lobsters (2) in.  I steamed them 10 minutes per pound.  Perfect! 

My dip was melted unsalted butter which I squirted some lemon.

The corn was boiled for 5 minutes in salted boiling water.  To make it tasty I ate it like Mexican esquites.  A little mayo on top and used the Tajin Mexican seasoning which had lime.

Salad was a French version of a Waldorf salad.  Cut up endive with Waldorf dressing, some cut green apples, chunks of French blue cheese and seasoned packaged walnuts for salads.

A simple delicious dinner!

#lobsters #dinner #corn #endivesalad #tomalley

Thursday, April 28, 2022


​Recently I helped demonstrate how to make quick Noodle dish with vegetables.


My favorite noodle is made with mung beans.  They are easy  to make.

Here is a video I recently made live without rehearsal.


Small package of mung bean noodle.

2-3 TB of Oil (I prefer olive oil because it is healthier)

1-2 minced garlic

1 onion

Spring onion

1/2 sliced red or green pepper

1 peeled and thinly sliced or julienned carrots

5 small size Bok choy washed and dried with paper towel and separated into leaves by cutting the bottom

1TB brown sugar

2TB soy sauce

1-2 tsp of sesame oil

1TB sesame seed

Watch the video to see how you cook it.

Make sure you boil a pot of water first and drop the noodles in it.  Cook for 5 minutes and drain.  Set aside The noodles.

Sauté everything first then mix in the noodles as soon as you add the sugar, and soy sauce.

Add the sesame oil at the very end.

Sprinkle with sesame seed before serving.

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

In Kyoto they usually have meat rolled up filled with vegetables to look like flowers.  I watched it on #NHK-TV recently and thought I should make it myself.

Flank steak thinly sliced by running a long sharp knife flat on top of the meat while pressing the meat down and carefully moving the knife flat ln its surf on the meat from one end to the other.  This creating about 3-4 thin slices. (About 1-1/2 pounds)

Set aside.
Half a red bell pepper seeded and sliced
9-10 pieces of very thin asparagus or 3-4 regular size asparagus, trimmed (bend bottoms till it snaps off and discard the bottoms)
3 leaves of cabbage boiled 2-3 minutes to soften
4 pieces of canned while baby corn
For sauce:
2TB soy sauce
2TB mirin or sake
2TB sugar

About 5TB of potato starch in a bowl for rolling the beef.
First boil a pot of water to blanche the asparagus for a minute or 2. Remove and cut in half.

Using the same water add the cabbage in the boiling pot and let it simmer for
3-4 minutes turning the cabbage to soften the stalks a little.  Wipe the cabbage and then slice the thinly and set aside.

Season the beef to taste.  From one end of the thin slice of beef where it may be wider, layer the some cabbage, peppers, asparagus and the corn. 

Tightly roll 
Then roll in the bowl
Of potato starch so the beef stays rollednuo.

Heat skillet with oil.  When hit, add the coated rolled beef and brown on each side about 2
Minutes on each side.  When all sides are browned, pour the sauce you made over the beef.  And roll the meat in it carefully.  Cover the pan for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for a minute or 2.

Transfer in a cutting board , letting it rest for a few more minutes then slice carefully.  Size should be enough to fit your mouth if possible.

You may use some of the sauce over to serve or kn the molded rice.  Garnish the plate with any vegetables of your choice.  Mine was asparagus because that is what I had more of after stuffing some in the meat.

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Christmas Dinner 2021 we celebrated Christmas physically by ourselves without family, we made only dinner for 2 without all the dramatic presentations.  But delicious as ever.

This year, with everyone vaccinated within my family who could be with us at home, I decided to celebrate!

For appetizers we had Jamon Iberico de Belleto fed only with acorns, Gilda (peppers, anchovies and olives) I brought back from our trip in Bilbao and San Sebastián, cheeses from our neighborhood cheese place.

I was going to make the mashed potatoes and garnish it with fresh white truffle but I had no more time to sieve it nor mash the potatoes.  So I just cut them into pieces and added butter and sprinkled them with salt and shaved the white truffle on top.  Next time, I may drizzle some truffle oil too.

Desserts this year were Tunisian traditional desserts crafted by @Layla of California and festive chocolates with peanut butter centers by @JohnKelly 

If you need any of the recipes - please let me know.  

Below were sweets I ordered from the website  I provided in my link.  But I quickly made up my concocted dessert with some  japanese style cheesecake  with whipped cream, pink strawberries and crumbled French style meringue.