The dinner experiment was successful! Yay! I would highly recommend Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m going to purchase it. The level of detail in the instructions and descriptions is wonderful.

I was thrilled that my parents really seemed to enjoy the meal. Some of the flavours in Japanese food can be quite strange if you’re not used to them. I can’t think of anything that they would eat on a regular basis that’s anything like dashi or wakame, both of which were in the miso soup. But they enjoyed it enough that my mom even asked for the donburi recipe. We don’t have them over very often, so I’m glad it all went well.

I served the food in two courses. The first course was miso soup and an eggplant dengaku. Then I left Blair and my folks to chat and visit while I prepared the donburi and the vinegared cucumber. I can’t believe how quick and easy it was to make the donburi! I think donburi would be a wonderfully quick week night dinner. I think this will be in heavy rotation on the nights that I cook.

Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of everything before we began eating. I was hungry! I’m really not one for fussy food displays, so it wouldn’t have been much to look at anyway. The cookbook does have wonderful instructions on how to make pretty food arrangements though.

Published in: on January 15, 2008 at 9:37 pm  Comments (2)  
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Dinner Experiment

I’m going to conduct a bit of a dinner experiment today. My folks are joining us for dinner and I’m going to attempt to make some Japanese food. The menu will include miso soup, eggplant dengaku, vinegared cucumber and chicken donburi. Not sure about dessert yet. Perhaps just some vanilla yogurt with fruit, or a simple cake.

I’m using a book from the library. Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art by Shizuo Tsuji. The book is very detailed! There is a lot of information about dining in proper Japanese style, such as the order the dishes should be served in and the types of dishes to use. Loads of information about the ingredients and possible western substitutes. So far, I’d highly recommend the book for anyone interested in learning about Japanese cuisine. But perhaps I should reserve judgment until after the dinner!

I’ll likely post again tomorrow with some pictures of the food. Wish me luck!

Published in: on January 12, 2008 at 11:46 am  Leave a Comment  
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FO: Warm and Cozy Top Down Cardigan

completed w&c cardi2

Originally uploaded by my spare time

I finally managed to get a picture of the completed cardigan. As I mentioned earlier, it didn’t turn out the way I’d originally planned. But it’s wearable.

Published in: on January 6, 2008 at 11:43 am  Leave a Comment  
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Hand Made Christmas Gifts

stuffed bird 2

Originally uploaded by my spare time

I forgot to post this earlier. I made several bird ornaments from Last Minute Patchwork + Quilted Gifts to give to a few co-workers as Christmas gifts. Lots of fun to make. I used some fat quarters that I had lying around.

I’m really not much of a sewer. I tend to start a sewing project and then just put it to the side when I get frustrated, which inevitably happens. These birds were pretty simple to make, although it did take some practice before I got the curved seams looking reasonable.

I also made the quilted coasters from this book, but I neglected to take pictures before I wrapped them up for gift giving.

Overall I was pretty pleased with the projects. In fact, I may just make a few other projects from this book. I’d love to make the puzzle ball and the someone to watch over you quilt. Or perhaps I should stick with smaller projects that I’m actually likely to finish.

Published in: on January 6, 2008 at 11:33 am  Leave a Comment  
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