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Dec. 17, Mon.


New Year Party / Chirashi-sushi & Deep-fried Shrimp

The most important holiday for Japanese people is January 1st, New Year's day. On that day, they celebrate with family by eating osechi - traditional New Year foods. It is a hassle to make an authentic osechi meal. So this time, Rika will introduce easier recipes instead. But they are just as gorgeous as traditional osechi !


[Ingredients] *Serves 4

1 4/5 cup/360ml short-grain rice or sushi rice
2 cups/400ml water
A piece of dried kombu kelp, about 6 cm square
3 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp sugar

5 cherry tomatoes
3 scallops
2 cucumber pickles
5 shiso leaves
1 avocado
1/2 lemon
3 pieces lemon peel
Toppings: Kinshi tamago
2 eggs
4 pinches salt
4 pinches cornstarch
2 tbsp roasted sesame seeds
100g ikura (salmon roe)
Soy sauce, to taste
1. Cook the rice with kombu and water. When the water boils, reduce the heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, and leave the rice uncovered for 30 minutes to naturally steam.

2. Cut the toppings, such as cucumber, pickles, shiso and avocado, into 5 mm pieces. Sprinkle the avocado with lemon juice. Cut the blanched scallops into 5 mm pieces. Mince the lemon peel.

3. For the kinshi tamago, mix the beaten egg with salt and cornstarch, then spread evenly in a frying pan.

4. When the surface of the omelet becomes dry and the edges begin to turn up, remove the egg crepe, by hand and cut into 5cm long strips, stack them, then cut into very thin strips.

5. To make the sushi vinegar, combine the rice vinegar, salt, and sugar, sprinkle over the cooked rice, and fold the rice with a cutting motion.

6. Add half of the toppings and sesame seeds. Lightly fold together.

7. Arrange the kinshi-tamago on top of the sushi rice, then sprinkle with the ikura salmon roe and the rest of the ingredients. Finish with lemon peel.

Daikon Radish and Carrot Salad

[Ingredients] *Serves 4

10cm piece of daikon radish
10cm piece of carrot
80g canned tuna
2 packs red cabbage-sprouts
2 tbsp sushi vinegar
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1/4 tsp salt
Black pepper
1. Peel the daikon radish and carrot, then cut into thin strips.

2. Mix in half amount of the sprouts, and all of the canned tuna, and seasonings.

3. Top with the rest of the sprouts.

Deep-fried Shrimp

[Ingredients] *Serves 4

12 jumbo shrimps, thawed if frozen
Salt for rinsing shrimp
Salt and pepper
Breading: Flour (or tempura flour)
1 to 2 eggs, beaten
Bread crumbs
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Shredded cabbage
4 lemon wedges
2 tbsp mayonnaise, to serve
1. Peel the shrimp, leaving the tail intact. Rub with salt, and rinse in cold water.

2. Cut the tip off the spike, and gently squeeze out the excess moisture. Make cuts on the belly sides.

3. Dry the surface of the shrimp, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

4. Batter in this order: flour (or tempura flour), beaten eggs, and bread crumbs.

5. Fry the shrimp in 170 degree Celsius oil until golden brown. Then arrange on a plate, along with the cabbage, watercress, and lemon wedges.