Friday, June 23, 2017

How to Cook Sekihan, Traditional Japanese Red Steamed Rice with Azuki Beans

     Today, I cooked sekihan (赤飯), traditional Japanese red steamed rice with azuki beans, for my first time, and it turned out good! It had delicious azuki aroma. :) 
      When I was a child, my grandmother sometimes cooked sekihan in honor of some occasion such as our family members' birthdays and New Year's Days. :) Last week, when my husband and I went to our local Japanese supermarket, I found this pack of red beans, azuki, so I finally decided to make sekihan for my first time. Actually, it was easy than I thought. :) Today, I'm going to share how to cook sekihan with you.
Japanese Red Beans, Azuki
Ingredients (8 Servings)
4 Go of Sweet Rice
2 oz of Japanese Red Beans, Azuki
30 fl oz of Water
Nip of Baking Soda
Nip of Salt
Black Sesame Seeds (Optional)
Japanese Red Beans, Azuki

1. Rinse sweet rice. Then put it in the bowl of your rice cooker.



2. Rinse red beans. Pour water into a sauce pan and bring it to a boil. Add baking soda and red beans in it. Simmer it for 30 minutes.




3. Take out the beans. (You will also use red bean water for the next step.)

Put a damp paper towel over beans to prevent water evaporation.



4. Chill the red bean water.



5. Add red bean water to the sweet rice water level in the bowl of the rice cooker. (It might be around 24 fl oz). 



6. Select "Sweet Rice" and start cooking.



7. When rice is cooked, finally add the boiled red beans. Then, toss steamed rice and red beans.




8. Serve in a bowl. Sprinkle salt and black sesame seeds according to your taste.



9. Enjoy!


       These are my entries you might like.

■How to Cook Okowa, Japanese Sticky Rice

■How to Make Whole Tomato Rice with Using A Rice Cooker 

■Top 10 Most Popular Japanese Foods

■My Top 15 Must Eat Foods in Japan - My Favorite Japanese Foods

■How to Make Tamago Kake Gohan - Raw Egg on Rice

■Top 10 Products You Should Buy at Japanese Supermarkets (for Beginners!)

■8 Interesting Japanese Kitchen Gadgets!

■My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Snacks

■My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Sweets


■How to Make Japanese Deep Fried Chicken, Kara-Age

■How to Cook Japanese Curry

■Top 5 Most Popular Japanese Curry Sauce Mix

■How to Cook Miso Soup

■How to Make Tamagoyaki, Japanese Omelette

■Top 10 Products You Should Buy at Daiso 


    My entries related to Japan can be seen here.

    My entries related to cooking can be seen here.

    My entries related to my favorite recipes can be seen here.

    My entries related to foods my husband cooked can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japanese instant ramen can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japanese noodles can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japan Haul can be seen here.
 

    My entries related to Best Japanese Beauty Products can be seen here.



Thursday, June 22, 2017

Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

     My husband and I have been collecting Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mugs which are only released locally. When he was on his business trip last month, he purchased this Starbucks You Are Here Collection Virginia Mug at Starbucks branch located in Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in Arlington County, Virginia. Anyway, I'm going to share this Virginia mug with you. :)
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

     The building is the Governor's Palace in Williamsburg. It was the official residence of the Royal Governors of the Colony of Virginia.   According to Wikipedia, the Fife and Drum Corps has been stationed at Fort Myer, Virginia, since its founding on February 23, 1960.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

       Virginia is the largest producer of seafood on the East Coast such as Virginia's renowned blue crabs. The Chesapeake Bay has had the largest blue crab harvest for more than a century.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

     It's Monticello, which was the primary plantation of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States. The current nickel, a United States coin, features a depiction of Monticello on its reverse side.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

       The Petersburg National Battlefield Park has the old cannons.  The bridge pictured on this mug is probably Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia

Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Virginia




      It's our 25th You Are Here Collection mug!
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mugs


These are my previous entries related to You Are Here Collection Mugs.

Hawaii

Waikiki

Las Vegas

Los Angeles

California

Orange County

San Diego

Chicago

Dallas

San Francisco

Utah

Vancouver

Arizona

Phoenix

Lake Tahoe

Houston

Ohio

Pike Place Market

Seattle

Illinois

Texas

New Mexico

Twin Cities

Washington, D.C.

Virginia



      This is my entries related to our Starbucks collections.
 http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Starbucks%20mugs

      My entries related to Starbucks Japan can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Starbucks%20Japan

      My entries related to Starbucks can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Starbucks 




Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Best Japanese Blackhead Remover - Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel

     A while ago, I read a Japanese beauty article about the best products to keep pores clean, and I became interested in Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel!  I also found that it has so many positive reviews on @ cosme, a huge Japanese cosmetic review site. I think many of my readers are also interested in Japanese pore minimizer. Today, I'm going to share with you the best Japanese blackhead remover, Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel. :) You can purchase this product at many drugstores in Japan. If you are planning on visiting Japan, you should check one there. :) By the way, Meishoku has two kinds of Pore Clear products, Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel (white packaging) and Pore Clear Pore Cover Smooth Makeup Primer (light pink packaging). These look very similar, so if you cannot understand Japanese, you might be confused between two similar products. In this entry, I mention only white one, Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel


Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel (明色化粧品 ポアクリア 角栓クリーナージェル)
30g
1026yen
Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel
      Meishoku (明色化粧品) is a Japanese cosmetic company which was originally established in Wakayama prefecture, Japan in 1885. They released this Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel a few years ago, and it has so many positive reviews on @cosme and Amazon Japan. Many people review that this is the best blackhead remover they've ever used. Many people noticed that it really minimizes nose pores after using it days in a row. Then, they continue using it a few times a week to keep their pores clean and beautiful.

       Meishoku Pore Clear Blackhead Removing Gel is warming gel to help to remove blackheads.  It contains orange oil, which cleanses pores, and ghassoul, which absorbs dirt from pores. Warming gel opens up pores, and orange oil and ghassoul dissolve and remove stubborn cloggers. :)


How to Use
1. After removing makeup, apply small amount of it on your dry nose.
2. Gently massage onto your nose in circular motions for 30 seconds.
3. Rinse it off.

・Use it 2 to 3 times a week. You can also use it daily if you have stubborn clogged pores.
・After using it, wash your face with your favorite facial cleanser.
・If your blackheads are very stubborn, you can also wash your face before using it.
・If you use this warming gel right before applying a pore strip, you can remove blackheads with your pore strip efficiently.


    By the way, some Japanese women don't like Biore Pore Strip (It's very popular in Japan and the U.S. though.). Pore strip instantly works great to remove blackheads (You can see numerous removed blackheads on the strip with your naked eyes. That's why it's addictive and loved by many people.). However, it is clear that it is too harsh for your skin. As I mentioned in my previous entry, Two Important Things You Should Know to Wash Your Face - Japanese Beauty Secrets!, in order to keep your skin healthy is minimizing skin damage. That's why most Japanese beauty experts don't recommend using pore strips. If you use pore strips, I recommend you to use it only once in a long while. When I was a teen, I actually used Biore Pore Strip sometimes, but now I don't use it at all.  




     My entries related to Best Japanese Beauty Products can be seen here.

     These are also my entries you might like.

Top 5 Most Popular Japanese Pore Minimizer   

Two Important Things You Should Know to Wash Your Face - Japanese Beauty Secrets!

Top 5 Life-Changing Japanese Beauty Products   
 
Top 5 Most Popular Japanese Charcoal Soap
 

10 Best Japanese Beauty Products on Amazon Japan, You Can Also Purchase Them at Drugstores in Japan

7 Best Japanese Beauty Products 2016 Hall of Fame 

The Most Popular Facial Sheet Masks in Japan

Top 7 Japanese Facial Sheet Masks That Rescue Your Dry Skin

3 Best Japanese Sunscreen Products to Try This Summer

5 Best Japanese Facial Lotion (Toner), Kesyou-sui

4 Reasons Why I Love Kose Softymo Cleansing Oil

12 Best Affordable Japanese Beauty Products

Top 5 Japanese Sunscreen Products

Top 3 Most Popular Japanese Eyelash Curlers

The Best Japanese Shampoo & Conditioner

5 Best Japanese Deep Conditioning Hair Masks

Review : Shiseido Tsubaki Damage Care Hair Water - It's the Best Japanese Hair Care Product!

The Best Japanese Hair Dryer, Panasonic Nano Care Hair Dryer

Top 3 Daiso Beauty Products





     My entries related to Japan Haul can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Japan%20Haul 

     My entries related to beauty can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/beauty

     My entries related to Japan can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Japan


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

     My husband and I have been collecting Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mugs which are only released locally. When he was on his business trip in Washington, D.C. last month, he purchased this Starbucks You Are Here Collection Washington, D.C. Mug there. :)  This time, he also enjoyed doing sightseeing there and showed me some pictures he took there. I would like to travel there someday and see those with my naked eyes. :)  Anyway, I'm going to share this Washington, D.C. mug with you. By the way, according to Wikipedia, Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as "Washington", "the District", or simply "D.C.", is the capital of the United States
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

    This iconic obelisk is the Washington Monument. According to Washington, D.C., it was built to honor George Washington, the commander-in-chief of the Continental Army and the first President of the United States, the Washington Monument was once the tallest building in the world at just over 555 feet. The monument to America’s first president still holds the title of world’s tallest stone structure and obelisk.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

     It's the White House, the official residence and workplace of the President of the United States.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

     There are more than 3,000 cherry blossom trees which were the gift from the city of Tokyo to the city of Washington, D.C. I wrote about it in my previous entries, Cherry Blossom Centennial - USPS Forever Stamps and Gifts of Friendship (Japan Joint Issue) - USPS Forever Stamps.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

      It's the Lincoln Memorial, an American national monument built to honor the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

      These are buildings around Logan Circle. There is a former residence of John A. Logan.
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.

Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mug - Washington, D.C.




    It's our 24th You Are Here Collection mug!
Starbucks You Are Here Collection Mugs


These are my previous entries related to You Are Here Collection Mugs.

Hawaii

Waikiki

Las Vegas

Los Angeles

California

Orange County

San Diego

Chicago

Dallas

San Francisco

Utah

Vancouver

Arizona

Phoenix

Lake Tahoe

Houston

Ohio

Pike Place Market

Seattle

Illinois

Texas

New Mexico

Twin Cities

Washington, D.C.



      This is my entries related to our Starbucks collections.
 http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Starbucks%20mugs

      My entries related to Starbucks Japan can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Starbucks%20Japan

      My entries related to Starbucks can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Starbucks 




Monday, June 19, 2017

Gifts from My Korean Friend - UK Facial Cream from UAE and Daiso Dish Cloth

Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti- Wrinkle Cream
     Today, my Korean friend gave me this facial cream, Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti-Wrinkle Cream, which her husband purchased during his business trip in UAE. She has sometimes given me some Korean beauty products, but I never expected that I would receive a beauty product from UAE from her!
Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti-Wrinkle Cream

     She told me that this cream is made in UK and is also popular in Korea.  
Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti-Wrinkle Cream

Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti- Wrinkle Cream

Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti- Wrinkle Cream

      I cannot wait to try it! :)
Fade Out Extra Care Whitening Anti- Wrinkle Cream

      Today, she told me that she has been very into Daiso these days. She showed me a stylish wait apron, adorable dish clothes, cups with various colors and lightweight indoor slippers purchased from Daiso, and she loves everything she purchased there! :) Daiso products are very inexpensive (Most products are $1.50 at Daiso in the U.S.) and very adorable. That's why many people in Japan also end up purchasing a lot there. :D
Daiso Dish Cloth
      She also gave me this Daiso dish cloth. :))


      Next time, when I visit Japan, I also would like to go to Daiso Japan because some Daiso products are sold in Japan only such as my favorite Daiso Detergent Cleaning for Markup Puff and Sponge. I also would like to go to 300yen shops in Japan.  300yen shops like 3COINS have better quality products than Daiso does. :)




     My entries related to Daiso can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Daiso

     My entries related to Japan can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Japan

     My entries related to beauty can be seen here.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/beauty

    This is my entries related to Best Japanese Beauty Products.
http://itisapieceofcake2011.blogspot.com/search/label/Best%20Japanese%20Beauty%20Products



     These are also my entries you might like.
■ Top 10 Products You Should Buy at Daiso  

■Top 3 Daiso Beauty Products

■Top 3 Most Popular Daiso Hair Products

■Must Go to Place in Japan - Lattice, A 300yen Shop

■What I Got at a 300yen Shop in Japan - 3COINS Haul

■ My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Sweets

■ My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Snacks

■ 4 Japanese Candies and Snacks, Official Souvenirs of the G7 2016 Ise-Shima Summit

■ Top 10 Most Popular Japanese Foods

■ My Top 15 Must Eat Foods in Japan - My Favorite Japanese Foods

■ Top 10 Products You Should Buy at Japanese Supermarkets (for Beginners!)

■ 8 Interesting Japanese Kitchen Gadgets!

■ Top 5 Life-Changing Japanese Beauty Products 

■ Top 5 Most Popular Japanese Bath Salt Brands  




Sunday, June 18, 2017

How to Cook Somen, Japanese Summer Cold Noodles


Ibonoito
      Today, my husband cooked this somen (素麺, そうめん), which is very thin Japanese noodles made of wheat flour. It's usually served cold and mostly eaten during summer. If you go to Japanese supermarket, there are many products of dried somen noodles you can choose from. My favorite one is this somen, Ibonoito (揖保乃糸), which is one of famous somen noodles made in Hyogo prefecture, Japan. Another famous somen noodle brand in Japan is Miwa Somen (三輪素麺), which is made in Nara prefecture.
Ibonoito Somen
      Today, I'm going to share how to cook somen noodles with you.

Ingredients
Dried Somen Noodles
Mentsuyu
Water
Grated Ginger
Chopped Green Onion



1. Right after cooking somen noodles according to package, soak them in ice water.



2. Then, put mentsuyu, water, grated ginger and chopped green onions into a small cup according to your taste.

 3. Enjoy somen noodles with the dipping sauce. It's an optional, but I like adding umeboshi (梅干し) into the dipping sauce to add sour and salty flavor to it. I learned this tip from my grandfather. :) 



    My entries related to Japanese noodles can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japan Haul can be seen here.
 

    My entries related to Best Japanese Beauty Products can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japan can be seen here.


    My entries related to cooking can be seen here.

    My entries related to my favorite recipes can be seen here.

    My entries related to foods my husband cooked can be seen here.



       These are also my entries you might like.

■Most Popular Japanese Foods (Top 41 - 50)

■Top 10 Products You Should Buy at Japanese Supermarkets (for Beginners!)

■Don Quijote (Donki) Haul - What He Got in Japan

■8 Interesting Japanese Kitchen Gadgets!

■My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Snacks

■My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Sweets

■Top 10 Most Popular Japanese Foods 

■My Top 15 Must Eat Foods in Japan - My Favorite Japanese Foods

■How to Make Japanese Deep Fried Chicken, Kara-Age

■How to Cook Japanese Curry

■How to Cook Miso Soup

■How to Cook Japanese White Cream Stew

■How to Cook Soboro Don, Japanese Scrambled Meat And Egg Bowl

■How to Cook Easy Teriyaki Chicken


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Satsuma Age

     Today, my husband and I ordered this set of satsuma age from Amazon Japan for my father-in-law.
Satsuma Age
        Have you ever heard of satsuma age? Satsuma age (薩摩揚げ) is a deep-fried fishcake, made from ground fish, flour and etc. Satsuma (薩摩) means western Kagoshima, Japan, so satsuma age originated in Kagoshima prefecture.
     When my husband was a teen, he had a part-time job at a souvenir shop in a rest area on highway in Fukuoka prefecture. He sometimes deep-fried many kinds of satsuma age and sold them there. Freshly deep-fried satsuma age was so delicious and one of the best-selling snacks at the souvenir shop. He told me, "I couldn't believe that I could eat so many samples of delicious satsuma age back then!" :) 

    We purchased the set of satsuma age made by Maruju. Their satsuma age is made from tofu and ground fish.


      We hope his parents will like them. :)

      You can find satsuma age at supermarkets and department stores in Japan. Freshly deep-fried satsuma age is so delicious, so if you are planning on visiting Japan, you should try one there. :)  By the way, the food section in a department store basement is called depa chika (デパ地下) in Japan. You can find a diverse selection of the highest quality foods at depa chika such as high-end Japanese confectionery, sushi from famous restaurants and etc. I think that depa chika is one of the must go to places in Japan. :) 



    My entries related to cooking can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japan Haul can be seen here.
 

    My entries related to Best Japanese Beauty Products can be seen here.

    My entries related to Japan can be seen here.




       These are also my entries you might like.

■Most Popular Japanese Foods (Top 11 - 20)

■What I Bought at Japanese Supermarkets

■Top 10 Products You Should Buy at Japanese Supermarkets (for Beginners!)

■Don Quijote (Donki) Haul - What He Got in Japan

■8 Interesting Japanese Kitchen Gadgets!

■My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Snacks

■My Top 10 Favorite Japanese Sweets

■Top 10 Most Popular Japanese Foods 

■My Top 15 Must Eat Foods in Japan - My Favorite Japanese Foods

■How to Make Japanese Deep Fried Chicken, Kara-Age

■How to Cook Japanese Curry

■How to Cook Miso Soup

■How to Cook Japanese White Cream Stew

■How to Cook Soboro Don, Japanese Scrambled Meat And Egg Bowl

■How to Cook Easy Teriyaki Chicken