Yeah, yeah, yet another food post. Sorry, lol. But these pictures have been accumulating for many weeks now, and I have virtually nothing else to talk about since I'm usually just stuck in the house studying. Not to mention the next couple weeks are midterms, meaning I'll be even more sequestered than usual. Hopefully I'll find something cool to do, though, so this blog won't decay, lol. But I hope a food post will tide people over till then, lol.
Actually, this post is in celebration of my host mother finally coming back from almost three weeks in Vienna. Good food has returned to the household! My host father... he tries but... he's not a very good cook, lol. His dishes tend to be rather... flavorless. It was a relief whenever Satoshi cooked instead, lol. For example, my host father made oden, which is a sort of Japanese fish-stew, involving a light broth and every type of fish cake imaginable. Japanese people tend to LOVE oden, and I couldn't understand why because it tasted pretty bland and blah to me. Well, tonight my host mother cooked her first meal since returning, and she made oden. Now THAT was oden, lol! Now I get it! When SHE makes it, it's flavorful and satisfying! NOW it tastes good, lol! One night my host father made this sesame green pepper dish but... it just tasted like lousy green peppers, lol. A chef he is not.
It's funny, though, hearing about Western food from a Japanese woman's perspective. When my host mother was telling us about Viennese cuisine, she was like, "all they ever eat is bread! Bread and meats! And cheese! And then at night... do you know what they do every night?" Then she looks around the table imploringly and says, "they eat CAKE! Every night they eat cake!" She then proceeds to look around the table in horror, awaiting the mortified nods of agreement from the rest of the family. At one point, during dinner, she asked if I'd eaten the vegetables yet. I said I hadn't and she goes "eh?! Dame da yo! Tabete, tabete!" (What?! That's no good! Eat them, eat them!") As I was hurriedly reaching for the vegetables to appease her, my host mother declares, "Win ja nai yo!" ("This isn't Vienna, you know!"). Yeah... needless to say, most Japanese are horrified by the Western diet, which they see as nothing but fats and breads with nothing in the way of nutrition. Buuuuut they may have a point, lol.
Anyways, back to Japanese food... To start off with, my friend Geri and I decided to go somewhere very sinful for dinner one night. In Japan, they have these places called "sweets buffets" where you basically get an hour and a half to eat all the sweets and carbs you want. It sounds sick, and you're probably wondering who the hell would go. Um, Japanese people. Lots of them. Mostly young girls. The buffet we went to was hella crowded, and some of those (mostly thin) Japanese girls were stuffing down more sweets than me, lol! But, of course, most Japanese are mortified by the idea of eating just sweets and no real food, so there was certainly real food as well. They had several types of pasta that were really good. In the picture below, we have three types. I believe one was tuna pasta, one was a garlic and mushroom pasta, and one was a spicy pasta (oooh yeah!):
Then I hit the sweets, lol! Unfortunately, I found myself unable to eat as much as expected. My appetite just wasn't very good that night, so I only grabbed the stuff you see on the plate below (these servings were very tiny, btw. The glass in the picture is also tiny, so the size comparison is confusing, lol). Most people at the buffet were eating way more than this, lol. The chocolate cake was particularly amazing.
We went to this buffet during the weeks leading up to Halloween, so the buffet had a lot of pumpkin-themed food! I simply couldn't resist having this particular delight: pumpkin pudding!!!
I think I also had a bit of coffee ice cream, lol. All in all, it was good times. Geri thinks she knows of another sweets buffet, so we might try another one soon, lol!
Moving on! Japan is known for some very good burger joints. Their burgers aren't really the same as American burgers (and tend to be more pricey because they're fancier, lol). Undoubtedly, the most famous Japanese burger joint is Mos Burger. I'd been dying to try it, and didn't get to go until recently, when I quite surprisingly ran into a friend whom I'd shared a dorm-floor with in Madison. He and Geri and I went to Mos burger, where I saw the most tempting of all burgers: a tofu burger topped with avocado. Combine this with the fact that Mos Burger has a huge display of various hot sauces, and I was friggin' jumping for joy, lol! The burger was fab (but what in the world is covered in avocado and NOT fab, lol?), and I drenched it in hot sauce, only adding to the win. Sorry for the kinda blurry picture, by the way. I forgot to turn on the super-focus on my camera, lol.
About a week later, Geri and I tried another popular burger joint in Japan called Freshness Burger. Freshness Burger is famous for its "flavored fries" in which you can purchase fries seasoned in a variety of bizarre flavors. I decided to go for a particularly weird one - "basil fries":
And here's my burger. In typical Kita-fashion, I got another shrimp fillet burger (I just don't like meat that much, lol).
In the world of drinks, here's a beauty I found at the 7/11. Yeah. A tiramisu latte. What asshole came up with this one, lol?! It was kinda pricey considering how small it was, but it was a tasty 30 seconds worth of drink, lol.
This is my latest addiction in drinks: Tea's Tea New York sells chai milk tea. I first discovered this while suffering from severe, rocking-out-induced dehydration at the V-Rock Festival. I hadn't previously known Tea's Tea had a chai drink. When I discovered it, I may have seen a holy light open up above me. I was addicted to chai tea as it is... so who the hell decided to BOTTLE it, lol?! Soooooooo good.
The 7/11 on campus (yeah, the basement of one of the school buildings has a friggin' 7/11) is now selling this beauty: Meiji Rich Matcha. Meiji is one of the leading chocolate brands in Japan, and matcha means green tea. Green tea chocolate is one of my FAVORITE food items, and this "Rich Matcha" brand is like a super-rich, super-green-tea-ified chocolate bar. It also costs two bucks, but it's TOTALLY worth it. It's soooooo loaded with green-tea flavor and it's soooo smooth.
Look at this green beauty! MmmmmmMMMMMM!!!!!!
And.......... that's all the food I've got, lol.