Fried chicken is one of the true joys in life, it's heralded in many parts of the world and done differently wherever you go. The Japanese version is known as Chicken Karaage and it's absolutely delicious, particularly when dunked in some rich Kewpie mayonnaise, spiked with Japanese seven spice. I've served my Karaage with a simple slaw that I dressed with a really great sweet miso and sesame dressing and some plain rice.
This is a great warm bao bun sandwich recipe - incorporating layers of flavour and texture so each mouthful is a sensory explosion. This recipe cranks up the umami dial with sweet, sticky umami pork, contrasting with sharp pickles, crunchy veg textures, creamy mayo and fragrant herbs.
In a Japanese ramen bar, the menu is divided into three main categories. This recipe is for a 'Shoyu' (soy) ramen - because soy is used to season the broth. The two other types are Miso ramen, which uses miso as the seasoning and Shio ramen that uses salt. Shoyu ramen is the most popular in Japan and there are loads of variations.
Ramen is one of Japan's best loved dishes and with more restaurants serving up this slurpy noodle delight, it's popularity is still on the rise here. Deeply satisfying, umami packed broth with special ramen-style noodles and toppings that add texture, freshness and flavour - this is such a special dish.
Wondering what Yuzu is? It's a fragrant citrus fruit from Japan - imagine the love-child of a grapefruit and a mandarin. It's one of those flavours that's intriguing, delicious and surprising - all at the same time. Foodie trendsetters have tipped Yuzu to become mainstream, like buying limes or avocados in your weekly shop, but for now, it's still an unusual flavour that needs exploring.
I just love the fresh vibrant flavours of a noodle salad, a riot of textures and flavours - brought together with a zingy, aromatic dressing. Year-round versatility, you can incorporate whatever fresh veg or salad happens to be in season at the time, or lurking in your fridge and needs using up.
The Japanese understand seasoning better than anyone. People talk about 'umami' as the 5th sense of taste, elevating savoury flavours to a new level. Umami literally translates as 'yummy' and was first discussed in Tokyo in the early 20th century.
The idea of making sushi can be a little intimidating, particularly when you hear stories of 15-year sushi chef apprenticeships. The truth is, it's pretty straightforward. You can experiment with loads of different fillings - they are not hard to find in your local shop, and if you're not a fan of handling raw fish, then use smoked fish or just vegetables instead. You could also try different meat fillings like hoisin duck or char sui pork if you're feeling adventurous.
Gyozas are little, half moon shaped dumplings made out of a hot water, wheat flour pastry and stuffed with pork, duck, chicken and vegetables. They are generally steamed before being crisped up in a pan and served with a dipping sauce. We think of Gyozas as being Japanese, in fact they actually originated in China but were adopted by the Japanese as they are soooooo good.
Both my kids love Wagamama, for a multi-site restaurant group, they do a really great job. Chicken Katsu is an absolute favourite on their menu, it's pure comfort food. Crispy breaded chicken breast slathered in a luscious, silky curry sauce served with rice and salad, yes please.
This recipe is really simple to make and is a total joy to eat, our Katsu Curry paste does all the hard work for you. Panko breadcrumbs are used extensively in restaurants but often over looked in the home. The way they're made gives you a much lighter, crisper crumb than just blitzing up fresh bread - try it and you'll never go back.
You could easily be mistaken for thinking that a Poke bowl is a Japanese invention, but actually it's one of the national dishes of Hawaii. Slap bang in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, Hawaiian cuisine has lots of influences from the Orient.