4/09/2011

Have to see " Angels and Demons "

Oh, this title is going to be aired in a minute, I have to see it.  Sorry !

" Silkwood " the Movie

Have you seen " Silkwood" ?   It's a movie about Karen Silkwood who was working @ Cimarron Fuel Fabrication Site.  When I saw it..was probably around 1983.  Long time ago.  Hmmmm, although I saw that movie that while ago, I haven't paid much attention to nuke plants or atomic fuel.

This is heavy issue and I don't want to make shallow decision or come to conclusion, but after seeing those people who are having such difficulties and anxiety about their future.... I don't think we can avoid thinking about this issue.

I wanted to write about Save Iwate and other food posts.  Phew.  Let me breath a bit. If  I cannot tonight, I will try tomorrow.

As always, thanks for reading !

NHK Program - What is going on in Fukushima Area ?

Sigh for the people who were directly affected and forced to move out of their own village.  When I say directly.... this means they might lose their homes... we don't know yet, but there is possibility.  Some of them have already lost their family members and they can't even go look for the remains due to the radiation.

Sigh for the future for the affected area.  I'd like to do and will try to do something,which I don't know what at the moment.... if it's for those people or if it's to change something at all... but right after watching the program, it is so depressing.  The impact from the radiation is worse than Three Mile Island Accident.

The tone of broadcasting... at least @ NHK has been changed, I can see.  There is a little hope although it was depressing to see the fact, the program tried  to deliver people's real message and explained what should be done now and from now on.

4/08/2011

Series Shimokitazawa No.3-III Keisui

Inside Keisui

Vegetable Tempura and Condiments 
2 more pics from Keisui.

Direction:
Exit Shimokitazawa station to north.
You will see Peacock store and Hanahiro ( Flower Shop ) .
Take right and keep walking.
Yokohama Bank will be on your left.
Take a left.  Keep on going.

You will see tea shop LUPICIA on the way.  In 30 seconds, you will see a card shop ( greeting cards ) on your right.
Take a right @ that corner.

You will see the entrance.

They have sake, snacks also.


Open:
11:30-15:00 17:00-21:00

Closed: on Thursdays.  Third Wednesday.
            

4/07/2011

"Save Iwate" Bank Account Information

A friend of mine is struggling in a back country in Iwate Prefecture, an affected area by the quake and tsunami.  Unfortunately, the website of Save Iwate is only in Japanese.  I'll try to update their current status and the items they need as much as possible.  For now, let me advise you their bank account information in case you could donate directly.


Apparently, the donated money and products are allocated to the major cities or evacuation centers first, and these minor cities haven't received enough supplies.  Will try to update more information such as products over this weekend. 


Bank Account Information

Bank Name The Bank of Iwate, Ltd.
Branch Nakanohashi Branch
Branch No. Branch No.100
Type of Account Futsu Kouza (Checking Account)
Account No. 100-2042867
Beneficiary’s Name Save Iwate Daihyou Terai Yosio
Beneficiary’s address/
Telephone Number Iwateken Moriokashi Simonohashichou 7-36/
019-653-1058
SWIFT Code AIWJPJT

Series Shimokitazawa No.3-II Keisui

Keisui's Vegetable Tempura Soba Set
This is the lunch I had the other day.
For me, this lunch was bit expensive.

Usually, for everyday lunch, if I have outside ( meaning if I don't cook @ my office ) , my budget ( which I usually set ) is 500 yen to 1,000 yen.

This was 1,470 yen.  It's worthwhile though.  I wanted to have their soba... which I hadn't had for ages and was so determined ( ! for lunch, sounds too much !? ) come here.

The soba was smooth, nice texture.  The vegetable tempura was served right after they cooked, it was still very hot.  The condiments were carefully delicately placed in small nice plates.  The whole preparation has delicate attention.

To be honest with you, I wanted to introduce the owner chef, but he declined.
I am sorry.... this was disappointing for me, too.   He is shy ?  maybe.  He is stubborn?  maybe.  I don't know, but that's his policy... he doesn't want to show his face.  Fine.. in your country also ?  Sometimes I find this kind of chefs.  They just want to concentrate on making good foods and serving those to their customers.
That is a way of professionalism and it doesn't bother me.

I just wanted to chat with him. Wanted to ask about his policy, his soba making... etc...  Little more pics for this place.  Maybe tomorrow.  I'd like to show my own food also.

4/06/2011

Series Shimokitazawa No.3-I KEISUI soba noodle shop

Entrance of KEISUI

Deep Fried Buckwheat Noodle
慶水(KEISUI) is cozy, adult-oriented buckwheat noodle shop.

This place is always quiet.  Shimokitazawa's cafe or restaurant is sometimes noisy, so this is precious.

Sort of hermitage soba ( buckwheat )
noodle shop for adults.



This is always served after the order, while I am waiting for soba.

4/05/2011

Something Similar to Tohoku Evacuees' Dinner

Simple Dinner
Looks pretty simple.
For evacuees', this is still much better, I guess.  I should thank I can have these easily and also pray for them again.

Thanks to the international donation.
I learned that it takes time to allocate that money to these people.

They started receiving supplies, yet according to my friend who returned
Iwate prefecture , they haven't had enough vegetables yet.
An organization started checking their nutrition levels.... vegetables, protein and vitamines are short.

Rice Ball:
As you can see.  Simple.  Prepare steamed white rice and make it ball shape.
Put a pinch of salt into rice.  Today, I used UMEJIO ( plum flavored salt ).

Tonjiru:  or (Pork Miso Soup)
You can add more ingredients.  I usually add burdock root, but today I didn't have it.
Ingredients:
thinly sliced pork ( cut into bite size / 50 g or handful ) . cut potato ( 1 ) , 1/3 cut carrot , 1/2 scallion , Dashi powder( 2 tea spoons ) , 2 cups of water. 1/2 table spoonful miso. ( to your taste )

1. Put potato and carrot into the water.  ( pour water into the pan first ).
2. Bring water to boil.  Add pork.  Add dashi or if you don't have it, use Maggi's.
3.  Check if potato and carrot is cooked. Add miso here.  Dissolve it well .   Add chopped scallion.

Enjoy simple meal !

Cherry Blossom Parties should be Restrained ?

As to the previous post, this could be related:
( quated from Wall Street Journal partially )


"Spring is in the air and the cherry blossoms are coming into bloom in parks all over Tokyo. Normally, it’s a highlight of the year, when Tokyoites gear up for the annual season of “hanami” parties – merry gatherings where people eat lots and drink more under the cherry blossoms.
But these are strange days in the capital, just two and a half weeks after the March disaster, with the Fukushima nuclear crisis still unfolding just 200 kilometers away.
While some city dwellers could sorely use a chance to unwind, and even inject a little more money into the capital’s economy, some say it’s a time for sober reflection and solidarity with those suffering in the northeast of the country.
That’s the line taken by conservative Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara, who’s urged the public to practice self-restraint this year.
“It’s not the kind of situation for people to drink a lot of and have a pleasant time just because the cherry blossoms bloomed,” said the 78-year-old governor currently campaigning for his fourth term, on Tuesday according tolocal media. "

" Nanbu Bijin ( Nanbu Beauty ) " Sake from Iwate Prefecture Message

I tried to write in the previous post, but somehow I couldn't.
This video is the message from Iwate Prefecture's Sake Brewery.

Their Sake is " Nanbu Bijin ". Mr. Kuji is the 5th generation of this brewery.
If I could work on the translation during weekend or sometime.... I will.
( cannot promise at the moment )

For now, let me explain what he is saying briefly here.
--- Thank you for your support and concern on quake and tsunami. Actually, our place was also damaged... a part of chimney was broken.  Old storehouse was also damaged....  We received lots of supporting supplies, thank you so much, we are grateful to your kindness.  We appreciate your monetary donation also.  Please do not ban yourselves from drinking.  That could cause secondary damage on us... economically.

Sake helps to cheer you up.... has power to heal you.  Please drink and enjoy.
That would help us.  -----

" Nanbu Bijin ( Nanbu Beauty ) " Sake from Iwate Prefecture VIDEO

Drink Tohoku Region's Sake and Have Fun Time, Please !

I will try to write more later today, probably tonight.  This helps them.
Go to your local Japanese restaurant and ask for it, please.

4/04/2011

NHK ETV / Nuke Power Plant

Nuke plant issues involves wide range of topics.... radiation, TEPCO, media and government. I am still trying to catch up with the information.

One thing I can tell you as of today is that " information " was not properly disclosed.
This confused people and created people's distrust in TEPCO and government announcement.  If I try to explain it.... will be endless .. so if I try to say one thing.. this is the one.

The difficulty is .... this is my thought.... TEPCO is very big sponsor for commercial broadcasters... so it is probably difficult to criticize or to provide negative information on TEPCO.  As to professors or researchers.... if they are sponsored by TEPCO or government related organization driving nuke power, it's difficult for them also to mention something negative....some say they are trying to avoid panic...
Yet, if it feels like being in old soviet union... people have to read... what is not mentioned has some realty... no good.

People have realized that the news on major TV is not fulfilling their desire " want to know the reality ", so internet , SNS and twitter has been our main information source.  People gather information and then decide which information is more trustworthy and reliable... at the end of the day, that's decision of individuals.  Also, this is the case, if the person has IT literacy... I do read news on internet and watch TV, but internet has much more information.  Thanks to the technology.  However, if the radiation level exceeds international standard, it is government's responsibility to advise people to move and their living and income should be guaranteed by either TEPCO or government.

SNS, Twitter and Internet Information was helpful to spread " help " " support " programs, projects and information to support those people in affected areas.  Everybody here is trying to do something... something one can do.


NHK's educational channel was brave enough to introduce local people's anger....
last night.  It showed people who have lived near the plant and their troubled life and work.  Fishermen, Farmers.... can they go back ?  Probably not in years.
There was actually a man who killed himself.... he was cultivating organic cabbage.

We will need to keep watching the situation and this is probably the time to start talking about  sustainable energy and our life style.  Probably we wouldn't need 24 hour open fully lit convenience stores.  ( I don't mind at all !  Compared to this confusion and troubled people. )

That NHK program was introducing voices of local people and sites...and there was conversation between a chief priest of a local temple ( also award winning writer ) and a non-fiction writer.  The priest said " It is imperious and arrogant ... to think that humankind can control mother nature. "

Series Shimokitazawa No.2-VII dill fait beau !

White Comforter Cover/ Price is reasonable
Thanks for reading my blog.
This concludes - dill fait beau ! - .

If you visit, you will enjoy looking at these items.  Ms. Yamane speaks English and some Chinese.

Rings, Earrings, Necklaces
Any other specialties ?
"Lingerie pouches, pouches for accessories.  Baby clothes, dresses, clothes for children.  Most of our customers are women, but male customers also visit us to purchase gifts.  Some customers have stocks of our products so that they can give people when they have guests at home.

We do accept orders for name stitches and made-to-orders.  "

"I try to choose chic and non-childish items.  I mean not 'too cute '.  Items... practical enough... because I 'd like my customers enjoy these embroideries in their daily life and make them happy.   "       "  There are customers in 20s, but many 60s and 70s.  This is because they do respect traditional Japanese customs more.
They try to give something in return.... to show their appreciation and to say thank you.  Customers in 30s and 40s seems to buy our items for their own use.  "

She visits Vietnam to buy some items for the shop.  "  Yes, I do visit Vietnam about twice a year.  Before starting this business, I visited them and researched.   Their embroidery is well known.  For me, it's almost like - Going Home-, for I already have many friends there.... to ask for motorcycle ride, to stay at their home..."

Why she chose this town.... Shimokitazawa, Setagaya ?
" I used to live here.  That's one reason.  Another is this space was perfect.  I didn't want such huge space.  This must be fate. "

" Shimokitazawa has diversity.... you will come back.  There are small noodle shop ( selling noodle ) SHIMADA SEIMEN or okoshi factory( rice crispy candy cubes ) which I buy as gifts.  These bring back memories of Japan's old time.  Children and parents can enjoy together.  Mothers and daughters can get friendly here.  Sometimes I welcome customers coming with 3 generations or 4 generations together !  "

Necklaces 
" Please feel free to stop by and check out or to talk to me. "

Lastly again, the deadline for fun, encouraging dust clothes'  is April 11.  Thank you.
Toilet Roll Case

Lingerie Pouch

T- shirts for small children

Series Shimokitazawa No.2-VI dill fait beau !

Girly Designs
Two more post including this for lovely " dill fait beau !".

Today, I'd like to show you cute items from them.

Girly pouch ... I would use them for cosmetics such as lip sticks, mirror.

The bottom shows small bag and smaller items.

The basket has pocket tissue case, small pouches.... good for earrings, rings or you can pack some potpourri....       I asked her if these are mainly handmade and hand-embroidered.  "  90 %, yes. However, when the design is outstanding, I do choose those items even they are machine embroidered.  Our standard bags are the examples.  Those are actually made by male creator and his idea comes out when he make stitches with machine.... it just come out spontaneously.   That turns out beautiful pattern.    When he makes them, he only draws simple, just put some marks on the fabric, he turns the fabric and.... amazingly, flowers , butterflies. "

She makes items as well.  There are also products from Vietnam. ( famous for high quality embroidery. ) She explains.  " Yes, there are my own products.  Other than that, there are products I bought in Vietnam, some I ordered and had them make in Vietnam.  There are also items created by Japanese creators.  Accessories are mostly made by creators. "

Handy Items/ Cute and Smaller Size

4/03/2011

Nuke Power Plant Program - NHK ETV

Just watched the program.  I'd like to write after organizing my idea.  Let me think and come back here tomorrow.

Gossiping ? Well, Studying Relationships ♡

I wanted to write about Japan's situation also.  That will be too long for today, so let me write about this sort of more casual, gossipy conversation.

Trust me, I'm not mean ( when I'm in bad mood, or if somebody is mean to me, I do fight back, but otherwise.... ) person.  I won't give any name of the person, of course.
I don't know this lady.... she is a friend of mine.

I had lunch the other day with a good friend of mine.  We went to same private school together.  I trust her and she is nice person who is trying to help this single friend.  My friend is married, has a child.

This friend of hers is trying to find a husband.   This friend is using some social network service to meet men to date.

She started dating this man who she thought " nice " meaning his look, job, income etc. met her standard.  They started dating, but he never invites her to his home always excusing himself like " oh, today the dog is in bad mood. " or " it's real mess etc. "  Then I said " Isn't he married ? "  Bingo !  She found it out and got really angry.

Guess, what she did !  She sued him and won 5 million yen.  Wow !
My friend continued.  " This is not the end of the story.  "
This woman asked him to come to some hotel lobby and made him apologize in public space.  He knelt and  bowed till his forehead touched the floor and apologized about his lie.  The woman kicked his head and placed her high-heeled shoe on his head !!!

Scary !  Watch out, gentlemen !  Never lie to women !

Chicken Miso Soup

Miso Soup made from Inspiration 
If I'm asked, I would say this is not regular miso soup ingredients.  Of course, you can add anything you'd like, but for Japanese, traditional miso soup is ie) Tofu & Scallion / Tofu & Seaweed / Potato etc....   This could be fusion.
Oh, also, let me tell you, if you don't have Japanese soup stock, you can just use Western soup stock or broth as a base soup.    You can use Maggie's.
This morning, I wanted to have some hearty miso soup.

Ingredients:
Potato ( 1 whole / cut in cubes ) , Carrot ( 1/ 2 ) , Chicken Breast ( 1/2 , cut into bite size ), Split Peas.   Water. Miso.  Grated Ginger ( to your taste )

1.  Make a soup first.  Boil 1 or 1.5 cup of water.
2.  Add granulated soup powder ( 1, 2 tea spoons )
3.  Add cut ingredients.
4.  When all the ingredients are cooked, add Miso about 1 table spoon.
( When you add miso, put out fire.  It kills good flavor of miso.  After dissolve the miso, you can warm it up again. ) Add grated ginger if you like.

Catching Up with Each Other eating Spanish Food

Paella ( Chicken/Vegetable / Seafood in it ) 
 It was so nice to see her.... we were busy talking.... to catch up with each other..

Earthquake, Tsunami, Nuke Power Plant, Other Friends etc. etc....

Bar El Barco ( Roppongi )
It seems there is another El Barco in Shibuya.  I should try their Shibuya shop also.

Creama Catalana 
Direction:
From Roppongi Intersection, go to Mitsubishi Tokyo UFJ Bank side.
Walk straight, this restaurant will be on your left in 2 min. ( It is basement, so watch out ! )

TEL: 03-5411-3445
Address: B1, 4-8-5 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Lunch : Monday through Friday
11:30-15:00
Dinner: Monday through Saturday & Holidays 17:00 - 23:00
                                          

Spanish Food @ Bar El Barco / Roppongi

Raw Ham Croquet 

Steamed Mussel / Spicy White Wine Flavor
Last night, I had dinner with my friend in Roppongi.  Spanish Cuisine @ El Barco.

Sofa and tables ... relaxing ambiance.
Food was delicious and not expensive.

I love Japanese food, but I also love International Cuisine....

Series Shimokitazawa No.2-V dill fait beau !

Dresses for Girls ( on the wall ) 

Hand Bag
 There are many items I wanted to show you.  There are actually more.....

I've never seen ' embroidery shop ' before, so asked her frankly.
" What is so alluring you to embroidery world ? "  She waited before commenting and started... " Well.... sensitivity or delicate hand work....it takes time really, yet the beauty created by that time consuming hand work couldn't be replaced by anything...."
Hand Bags / Accessories

Lingerie Pouches

Series Shimokitazawa No.2-IV dill fait beau !

Delicate Attention of Ms. Yamane

The left is flowers placed at the entrance
creating cozy, warm ambiance.  I feel this natural flowers are showing Ms. Yamane's sensitive, delicate attention.

She explained about the project.
" There maybe clean, unused towels at your home.  Some towels given by hotels, shops etc.  My plan is to make dust clothes from these towels with encouraging, heart-warming embroideries.   I wanted to do something for Tohoku Region so that people there can use.  Designs that could make them smile, if you take that time.   When I thought about - what i could do ? -, I first thought - tooth brushes ? etc...-.  My shop is hand made, embroidery shop.  This idea just popped up in my head.  It could be used to remove dusts, etc. "
Another Dust Cloth Sample made by Ms. Yamane

Lingerie Pouch