Perhaps it’s because I’ve been to the market this morning and just finished grocery shopping but I want to start by sharing another Japanese meal with you. Doesn’t this set menu look delicious? My Japanese friend sent me this picture as part of a series of photos she recently shot that I will be featuring here.
Shogayaki Teishoku is a set-menu based around ginger-flavored pork sauté! She very thoughtfully explained each of the dishes to me. In addition to the pork, on the main plate, Japanese boiled rice and miso soup accompany the meal. Every single Japanese restaurant we’ve eaten at here in France has served rice and miso soup with our order. Here in France, the miso soup is considered a starter. I wonder if this is true in Japan as well. The teacup contains chawan-mushi, a steamed egg custard eaten with a spoon. Chilled tofu, topped with dried bonito and sliced green onion and eaten with soy sauce is also part of the meal. I think I’m going to try it at home–I actually have all the ingredients in our kitchen! Pickles, sautéed burdock (kinpira gobo) and fruit finish the platter.
When I look at this meal, it feels like it fits the fall season to me. We’ve been making a real effort to eat according to what’s in season. Summer is perhaps the easiest season to eat local but I’ve been discovering all sorts of new recipes and winter squash to eat this fall. I’m not ready to be a complete locavore (I love oranges and bananas way too much to give them up for now) but I am trying to eat locally and sustainably. Japanese cuisine, as it’s presented here in France, already seems to have figured out the benefits of eating seasonal food.
My friend told me that she forgot to put the chopsticks in the picture. This made me smile as we’ve been trying to teach Laura to use chopsticks. She wants to learn but it’s turning out to be a bit more complicated than planned. Any suggestions? For the time being, she will not be going to tanpopo with us. Yes, I have finally found a Japanese restaurant that serves something other than sushi and maki! tanpopo is located in Saint Malo and seeks to introduce diners to a more refined and gastronomic view of Japanese cuisine. The restaurant offers either a monthly tasting menu for 38€ (recommended dining time: 2.5 hours) or a lunch bento special for 19€. My mouth is already watering–now I just need to find a special occasion for us to go there! It might be a little pricey but it’s far closer than a trip to Japan to try something new!