Cooking

Here are some of my cooking projects. While I am in Japan, there are a number of delicious dishes that I would like to introduce to my new Japanese friends. I have realized that there are a lot of cuisines that I enjoy on a daily basis back home in Vancouver, but which many Japanese people in Japan have never tried. This includes Persian, Greek, authentic Indian, Mexican, and of course Canadian dishes. It is my goal to share these wonderful foods during my time here!

Below are some of my favorite dishes to prepare.

Bhel Puri

Made with bhel puri mix, potatoes, tomatoes, cilantro, onion, yogurt, tamarind sauce, and green chutney, it is an absolute spicy flavor explosion!

Indian Chicken Curry

I grew up enjoying a delicious chicken curry that my Mom used to prepare. When I went to Nair Restaurant in Ginza, Tokyo, I was surprised to find that it had that nostalgic flavor of the Indian chicken curry that I grew up with! The foundational ingredients for this curry are: chicken, tomatoes, cumin, coriander, chili, and turmeric.

Spaghetti Sauce

This is another childhood favorite! As a child, I don’t think there was anything I loved more than my Mom’s spaghetti. Usually, she used ground turkey or if not available, ground chicken. My favorite, however, was ground bison! These were the top three healthy options.

She would then cook the meat together with diced onion, tomato sauce, Italian herbs (such as basil, oregano, sage) black pepper, chili, and salt.

I love to cook and eat vegan food, and I’ve even made a vegan version using tofu meat. Heaven on a plate!

Date Squares

Yes, you know by now. This was one of my absolute childhood favorites growing up! I didn’t like dates, and I didn’t like oats, but combined…somehow I was hooked.

It consists of a sweet date paste, made with dates, lemon, and a bit of water. The crusting is made of oats, butter, sugar, and flour, and mixed together thoroughly. Then, you bake it in the oven and voila! …The most decadent dessert you have ever tasted!

California Roll

Why is it called the California roll? Good question…since, after all, it was invented by the founder of the Tojo restaurant in Vancouver, Canada! It consists of crab mixed with mayonnaise, cucumber, and avocado. Unlike the typical makizushi (or roll sushi) in Japan, it has nori on the inside and rice on the outside!

Just between you and me, I suspect that the reason for this is that nori is more expensive in Canada, and if you put the nori on the inside and the rice on the outside, you use less nori!

There are many creative and unusual sushi rolls in Vancouver. One time, I even made mango rolls!

Hummus with Pita and Salad

Here is a link to one of my many hummus recipes!

This is another one of my most loved meals. It’s delicious, super healthy, and for the hummus, all you need is:

  • cooked chickpeas
  • tahini
  • lemon juice
  • salt
  • garlic
  • crushed chili peppers

Mix this all up in a blender, and you have the most delectable dip. I love to serve it with pita bread and a salad — usually tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet onion, olives, and a sprinkle of herbs and black pepper.

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