Sunday, September 30, 2012

Trip to Japan ~ Simply, Food

When people ask me what I miss the most about Japan, one of the first things that comes to mind is FOOD. Seriously, isn't that a basic need and desire of human nature? There are some Japanese foods that I could buy where I live, but not like actually living there.

When I had a family trip to California a couple years ago, I made sure that we would hit the Japanese grocery stores there. I was amazed with the selections... yeah... I was in heaven!

For the first time in 11 years, I was actually in Japan. Not in California, not in little Tokyo... real Japan! You might laugh at me, but I had a list of things I wanted to eat while I was there. I felt like if I miss this chance; who knows when my next chance will be?

My family and friends laughed at the list at first, but they were really helping me to cross the items off the list.

They took me to "kaiten-sushi". It is a sushi restaurant that you sit around and a conveyor belt brings the food and you grab a dish with sushi on it. They are so much cheaper than traditional sushi restaurants. Most of the dishes are 105 yen (which is about $1.35 right now). You may not believe me, but I can really pack them in when I am hungry. :)

I was so surprised to see the restaurant. There were few things that had changed since I left; the lay out of the seating arrangement was different, I mean instead of sitting around facing the conveyor belt;, there are booths around the belt, and you can order whatever you want from a touch screen at your booth. The dish stops at your booth and the light flashes to tell you that your sushi has arrived. Things change so much in 11 years! I had to take a pictures at this new found Japanese culture.

You just order what you want, and they will make one right there for you.

There were really good selections. Yeah, they are not same as you eat at real sushi restaurant, but they are pretty good. If you take someone like me, who was starving for Japanese food in general, I was like a kid in a candy shop.

Mmm... Am I done? Well, let me rest for a minute, I think I can go for some more.

When I had small class reunion, we met at an awesome restaurant, there I had bunch of yummy food (which I was able to cross some stuff off my list as well)...

When my mom and my sister took me out for shopping, we had lunch at the restaurant as well... Oh, they were so good...

Am I done yet? No, no way, I had to eat some Japanese junk food as well.

There were LOTS more other things that I ate, but forgot to take pictures because I was too excited about it. Such as ramen, Japanese style Chinese food (oh, they are soo good), very yummy cakes, and best of all, the home cooked food by my mom and my sisters. They are all excellent cooks, and I was so spoiled while I was there. Thank you everyone for feeding me!!

Has reading about all this food given you heartburn yet? There are a couple more pictures to share with you...

Tada! You know what, they are not real food. They are actually samples made out of wax to show what you can expect when you order that dish. I believe this was invented in Japan, and pretty much any restaurant you go to, you see samples like this in front of the place.

Japanese style kid’s meals... I was missing my family and wanted to show this to my kiddos.

I ate so much while I was there. I am paying the price for it right now, but it was totally worth it!


  1. I saw a lot of 'display food' in Taiwan when I was there in January..I wondered what it was made of but never thought of wax! I think the food in asian countries is amazingly fresh and tasty.

  2. I agree! I miss Japanese food from Japan! I miss our local Teppanyaki restaurant in Ogaki! Oh and the small noodle shop down the street... and I make Katsudon all the time, but the Katsudon at the shop downtown was to die for... Now I'm hungry!

  3. Ou, ou, ou happy You! You will never believe how DO we - especially me and my little daugther - like sushi here in Latvia (real Latvia, in Eastern Europe:). What a menu, what a price!:))
    (and of course, she likes Hello Kitty also - these plates are so charming;)

  4. I always wish to taste all the Japan foods, this post made me wish this more and more:)

  5. I'm so hungry now! Great food pictures, everything looks delicious. My husband and I were recently in Tokyo for our honeymoon, and we also had our fill of sushi - so much tastier and cheaper than in Spain. We also tried a beautiful and delicious sweet - I think they were sugared grapes?

  6. GAH!!! Now I'm missing Japanese food >_<

    Especially OCTOPUS!! Tako!! <3
    And you had takoyaki? >_<

  7. I know what you mean. My mom always missed Japanese food. Where I live there is a large Japanese grocery store, where she lives there isn't one. I would buy her at least a months worth of groceries when I visited her so she had something that tasted like home. Now my daughter is in Japan and she misses certain American foods. Food we grow up with is the linking experience. Glad to see you had a chance to indulge and feel like you were home again.

  8. I so miss Japanese food, especially Japanese style breakfast, cooked by my sweet, old auntie! There is a sushi place near Seattle that has a conveyor belt, and I go there every chance I get. Thanks for the pictures, but now I have a craving that can't be satisfied in Texas.

  9. My husband travels to Japan on business and we were lucky to go with him last year.

    My son loved the conveyor belt sushi! He announced the prices of the plates as they passed by.

    Did you have onigiri? I am amazed that something so simple can be so delicious!

  10. Oh my gravy! You've got me wanting sushi...real sushi! With really good soba noodles! YUM!

  11. How amazing! For this untutored reader, would you please please pretty please post explanations of everything that is in each picture? Thank you!

  12. I have had some Japanese food and it's delicious! I don't know all the dishes you've mentioned but my mouth was watering while reading :) And, it's a relief to know that there is also Japanese junk food :)

  13. Hi everyone,

    Thank you for your comments. :) I am so happy to know that there are many Japanese food lovers!

    So, for those of you who had some questions and such...

    Tall Girl-
    You went to Tokyo for your honeymoon! I am glad to hear that you had a great time there. I hope you two have a happy and wonderful life!

    Ariel Loh-
    Yes, I had Takoyaki. Actually twice. Ahh... I love that stuff.

    Wow, you are such a nice daughter. I bet that means so much to your mom. I think food is one of the ways we connect to each other, it is amazing how we can relate, and come together as people around food. :)

    No I didn't have onigiri there, but I make them all the time. That is one of my kids' favorite Japanese foods, and it is so easy to make!

  14. I think food is actually one of the things you miss the most. Those flavors you learn to taste when you grow up stick with you forever...and even guide all future discoveries. I love Japanese food and (I have to admit) it's one of the main reasons why I want to go to Japan. Unfortunately Japanese food abroad is often not the real least in Italy it's done by Chinese people

  15. Yay for foods! Someday I want to eat foods from other countries too.


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