Monday, June 30, 2008

Saba Yakibitashi

I introduced Yaki Sab Misoni before. This is Saba Yakibitashi, grilled and marinated mackerel. It is simple and good for summer time because this is cold appetizer and vinegar marinated.
I tell you one more time. Saba is great.
Reason 1: It is reasonable price.
Reason 2: It is rich in DHA.
Reason 3: It is rich in EPA.
Reason 4: Smokey flavor is yummy.
Reason 5: It is tasty.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Dana at Hampton Golf Village

I introduce another drink girl at Hampton Golf Village.
This is Dana. Any comment? She is just a cute girl.
I will introduce more girls near future.
But my main purpose to go to golf course is playing golf and break 90 soon. Today's score was 93. It was not bad.

Tsukemono, Pickles

We have 5 kinds of pickles.
Green: Wasaina, wasabi plant
Orange: Yamagobo, mountain gobo root
Purple: Shibazuke, cucumber
Red: Fukushinzuke, Radish
Yellow: Takuan, radish
Each one has a diffrent flavor and taste.
I sometimes make my pickles with radish, carrot and cucumber.

Azuki Yokan

Do you like red bean? I love it. We Japanese use it a lots for dessert. This is my creation. I made azuki yokan. Sweet red bean plus agar( seaweed gelatin) , sugar, salt and blackberry preserve.
Sauce is easy. I use green tea ice cream. Just leave it and add green tea powder. This is a great combination of sweetens and bitterness.
But it is hard for Americans. You guys mind of bean is side dish and vegetables. If you go to Mexican restaurants, you might see red bean but it is not sweet, of course. It shouldn't be sweet. I cannot eat that because of my imagination. Anyway, this is a nice summer dish, I believe.

Bring your own bag for grocery shopping!

Do you bring your own shopping bag for grocery shopping? I do most of the time. I have 3 of Trader Joe's , 1 of Kroger and 2 of Seacology cloth bag. I go to Buford Hwy. Farmers market 2 times a week but I don't see anybody bring bags. I had a time someone asked me the bag She told me that she forgot to bring her bag and had same trader Joe's bag.
It is made form oil because it is plastic. It chokes animals sometimes. I read an article at small town in England. This town banned to use plastic bag because of environmental issue.
In Japan, many convenience stores and supermarkets are try to ban it. It is good to do that.
We can reduce trash, company save money and more.
Please bring your own bags for your next shopping. It is stylish behavior now and same as driving hybrid cars. We have to chase this good trend.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Freeze the price.

We see bad news everyday. Oil price is higher and higher. Look at in your home and office. Do you see something from plastic? It is made from oil. Car runs with oil. Almost everything price is going high when oil price is high. I understand factory raise the price because material's price is up. I understand retail price is up because their buying cost is high.
How about restaurant? Yes, our buying cost is high and is it OK to raise the price? Some are OK but I don't agree with that. I 'm from fashion industry. I used to design pumps.
Their cost is same but the prices are diff rent. It is because of design. I give you easy sample. Let's bring a silk tie. If it is made in China, $15-$20 and made in Japan $70-$90 and made and made in France and Hermes $300. Here in Atlanta, most of sushi restaurants buy fish from a same company. So, the cost is same and selling price is depend on their creation and store brand value. Fortunately, our rent is cheaper than average Buckhead location and we have advantage. And we are doing good business and have enough money to but extra grocery, like rice, oil and more. I have 3-4 months rice inventory at my house. I'm a lots of extra buying soy bean oil for future price raising. All these efforts prevent to raise price and can keep same price for a while. It is ridiculous that everything price is going high. I hate this. So I decided to keep same or go lower. It is fun to cut price. Our June sales is still higher than last year. We see in July and August. I feel our customer support my challenge. Thanks you all.

Konbu(Kelp) 's power

These are process of marinating macherel. I use konbu and vinegar.
I think you might see at Spa for body pack or facial things.
Anyway, konbu make great saba.
Konbu give fish great flavor.

A famous Japanese appetizer is Hirame Kobujime. It is sliced flounder sashimi wrapped with konbu. The meat of hirame is white but the color changes after 1-2 hours marinating. Japanese like konbu. We eat konbu a lots. I sometimes eat this kind of konbu. It is hard but get soft after marinating.
Thank you for great nature. Oh, konbu is good for your hair. Are you losing hair? Eat konbu. Do you color hair? Eat konbu. Konbu has so many minerals with no side effect.

A first time Sushi in her life

This is Bridget from Chicago. And a guy from St Louis. I don't know his name and I don't care guy's name. They came to Atlanta for business meeting or something like that.
He came first and told me that she never had sushi before.
He liked sashimi and I made sashimi assortment.
Bridget was not bad, she was not Conservative. She ate tuna first and ate most of them. Then we made a shrimp tempura roll. I asked her what she ate basically. It is Chicago, good pasta, good meat and potato. She told me that she ate sushi again when she went back to Chicago.
This is a good news. Sushi population is growing and I got a new customer.
Someone went to Africa to sell shoes. He told his boss when he came back from Africa. " We have a great opportunity because they didn't wear shoes at all." Someone went to Africa and told to his boss. " Hey boss, we should give up because no one wear any shoes over there. "
America is still under developing country for a sushi salesman.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Tai Sashimi Salad

This is my signature dish.
I went to California in 2002 and got an idea.
Some fish are OK with soy sauce but is it OK? Tuna is good for soy sauce but how about white fish? Ponzu matches with flounder.
Californian eat sashimi and salad. Eating vegetables and fish together is healthy trend.
But I needed to create nice sauce.
Then, I made this dish.
I made a lots of sashimi salad after this.
I also like using fruits. Fruits have beautiful color and feel healthy.

Bigeye tuna June 24 2008

I got bigeye tuna today. This is not bad. Not toro but Chu-toro.

Meat is firm and will last long. There is no big eye tuna on Wednesday and Thursday delivery.

I always talk with our supplier and make sure what kind of tuna is coming next a few days.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Salmon Carpaccio

This is my emergency dish. Sometimes we don't have enough fish items. I normally don't make salmon appetizer. We have ceviche, and that it.
So this is a special occasion.
Sliced salmon with sliced lemon, pineapple, cucumber, some vegetables, caper. And Taka's special sauce on it.
I always love to make special dishes.

Maguro Nuta

You can enjoy sashimi without soy sauce.
Nuta is a such kind of dish.
What is nuta? Nuta is miso vinegar mustard.
It is good for shell fish, tuna and steamed vegetables, green onion, spinach.
I made maguro nuta with thinly sliced cucumber and yamagobo pickle.
Simple is the best.

Yaki Saba Misoni

This is one of my favorite dish. Grilled and cooked Saba,mackerel.

I use Norwegian mackerel. This is frozen . I dry our 1-2 hours after cut and take juice and oil under the Sun.

Then cut in quarter and sprinkle a little bit salt. Then grilled on net. Saba has a lot of oil and get smoke easily. I make miso broth same time. Water, kelp, garlic, miso, mirin and soy sauce are needed. Use a fried pan and cover otherwise fish get burn with fire. When you see brown or dark on fish, move to miso broth and cook 3 minutes. Ready to eat!

Saba is rich in EPA, DHA. And the price is also reasonable. I think 1 tail price is $5-$7.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Brooke at Hampton Village

This is Brooke. I saw her when I Played golf at Hampton Village.
Look at her unique hair style and color coordination.

She told me it was purple 2 weeks ago. She is blond but color dark partly.
I see many girls color to blond but she does opposite.
Need to see her later and check what color she does next time.

My golf score was getting bad after saw her hair. It was not her responsibility and my skill problem.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Eel Bone

I'm very busy on Thursday's afternoon. I get Japanese fish on this day. Sea eel is one of them. I cut eel and cook and clean bone and wash it and dry under the Sun.
I used to give this to Sonnenberg family(They moved to Connecticut last year.) Their kids liked this.
Anyway, some customers asked me to make this. Jessica always asks me.

We do this for deep fried and serve it.
It is almost cookie texture. Would you like to try this? It is free .

Battera, Pressed mackerel sushi

I like battera. You can tell restaurants grade when eat mackerel.

I normally make battera with shiso leaf, ginger and white kelp sheet(konbu).

Beleive or not, we can eat this for next day's lunch.
I brought this to a golf course before.
Saba is marinated with vinegar. Vinegar has strong sanitized power.

We also carry Unagi pressed sushi.

Nikumiso, Ground beef and vegetable sauce

Taka's Cooking Class: Nikumiso
Use ground beef and some vegetables and make delicious sauce.

ground beef, Green pepper, onion, celery, carrot, ginger, garlic
Black bean sauce, miso, soy sauce, mirin, sugar, sake and potato starch

1, Heat a fried pan and pour sesame oil. Add minced garlic and ginger.
2, Add ground beef and sauteed.
3, Add diced vegetables and sauteed. Add black bean sauce.
4, Combine miso, soy sauce, sake, mirin and sugar and water. And mix together.
5, Add it in a pan.
6, If vegetables are ready( means get soft), add starch water ( This is just starch and water).
That's it.
I normally use this for Tofu steak topping. You can use this for lettuce wrap. Or cut vegetables bigger and use sliced beef. It is a nice Chinese dish. It is good for topping of steamed rice.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Furikake is rice seasoning. It is good for steamed rice. I like it and kids love it.
I sometimes see the people who eat steamed rice.
They add soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, eel sauce, spicy sauce.
I think Americans think steamed rice is same as bread.
Can you eat bread by itself? Do you use butter, jam, olive oil?
I can eat steamed rice by itself but how about you?
Do you think adding soy sauce on top of rice means healthy?
This is my answer. When you eat steamed rice, do like Japanese. Furikake is great. It is dried vegetables, egg and more. Just add with steamed rice and get great flavor.
This is our free offer and please try.

Big eye tuna June 17 2008

I am always exciting when I get tuna. I figure out how good toro in it.
Then I think of specials.
Ohtoro is worth but hard to sell.
I got complaint last week from blue fin oh toro because of hard meat and chewiness.
I dumped 6 orders of oh toro nigiri. And I made toro aburi sushi, seared toro susi and brought to the customers. I explained that and ask them to eat. They understood.

This big eye is much easier than last week. I made toro abuli, seared toro and slow cooked toro.

Good toro is for fresh sashimi, seared and cooked, grilled. It is a multi player.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Hiyashi Chuka, Cold Ramen Noodle

I showed you cold udon and cold soba before. This is cold ramen noodle.
I wrote you before that I liked any kinds of noodle.
This hiyashi chuka is good for summer time.
Just boil water and add noodle. Wash with cold water with ice.
Green onion, ham, egg sheet, cucumber and nori seaweed. That' sit.
It is easy to make and delicious.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Our new house Hot Sake

This is our new house Hot Sake. The name is Miya No Yuki. It is from Mie prefecture. You don't know where is Mie. It is located in the middle of Japan and next to Nagoya. Mie is famous for Mikimoto Pearl and Matsuzaka beef ( basically same as Kobe beef).
We used to carry Koji sake. Koji sake is made in California. What is difference? Koji sake is not pure rice sake. They make sake and add alcohol later. What kind of alcohol they add? It is made from corn or sugar cane because of cost performance. Koji sake was very profitable. Many restaurants sell Gekkeikan, Ozeki, Shochikubai and more. They are all famous brands and same kinds of sake.
Miyano Yuki is a small sake brewery and make high quality sake. And they don't add alcohol. It means you don't get headache even if you drink a lots. We don't have much profit but it is OK.
We need keep high quality for everything.
When you feel difference next drinking, I'm very happy.

How to eat Sushi

I've been saying this all the time. "Taka, your sushi is so good!". Look at a first picture. They are eating soy sauce marinated sushi rice and fish. I can not eat like this. 1st of all it is too salty, 2nd, too spicy and 3rd, it is not healthy. Can you drink soy sauce by itself? I cannot. But most of Americans can do that. Mane people misunderstand that sushi is ethnic food. Yes, it is. But this food doesn't need to eat spicy way. Then, people ask me, " Do you have light soy sauce?" It's same if you use too much portion of soy sauce.
2nd picture is proper way of eating sushi. Don't hesitate to use fingers. You can use chop sticks but hard to dip fish side into soy sauce. 50% of Japanese use fingers and other use chop sticks.
A last picture is easy way to enjoy sushi. I saw somewhere in Japan and I thought this was a good idea. We are doing thus for some customers they want.
Brush light wasabi soy sauce on top of fish. Rice never get soy sauce. It is clean, beautiful and healthy. We don't need to clean the table, maybe.
Fish need soy sauce and rice doesn't need it. Thanks.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Miso Ramen

You can ask Japanese people. " Do you like ramen?" I think 100% of people say, YES.
Ramen in national food in Japan. Do I like it? Of course. I have dry ramen, frozen ramen at my home. I eat ramen at restaurant for my lunch. This is one of them. This is called miso ramen, miso broth ramen noodle. It is originally from China. And we arranged our way.
We have miso, soy sauce, salt and tonkotsu(pork bone).
Let's make miso ramen.
You can buy this ramen at Buford Hwy. Farmers Market. It is frozen and can use directly or defrost. Boil around 5 cups of water. And sauteed vegetables with butter. You can use bell pepper, onion, cabbage, bean sprouts. Add noodle when water is boiling. I think cooking time is 2 minutes. Take 1.5 cups of hot water and put in a deep bowl. Stir with concentrated soup. Strain noodle and put it in the bowl. Add vegetables. Ready to eat. Enjoy!!
We don't have ramen on the menu.
Hashiguchi Jr. has good tonkotsu ramen. Haru Ichiban has good soy sauce ramen.
And the best is Blue fin sushi in Duluth( Peachtree Industrial Blvd.) They have excellent miso ramen. The owner, Mr. Kawamura was used to work for a Chinese restaurant in Japan. He knows it. It takes a little bit long drive but worth it.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Today's Tuna. Bigeye tuna

This is the tuna I ordered. I supposed to order blue fin tuna but I changed my mind.
Big eye is tastier than blue fin because of out of season.
This is back side and closed to tail.

Ginger Dressing and more

Taka's Cooking School, again?

Let's make ginger dressing. Do you buy salad dressing or make it?

It is easy and tasty.

Ginger Dressing: Onion 50g, Apple 200g, Mirin 100cc, Soy sauce 200cc, Rice vinegar 50cc, Canola Oil 150cc, Orange juice 200cc, Add pepper as you like. Bled them. Keep in a fridge and last 4 weeks.

Soy sauce Dressing: Canola Oil 200cc, Soy sauce 150cc, Rice Vinegar 100cc add onion and pepper as you like. Blend them.

Is it easy?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Ika Special

I like making specials. This is one of them. marinated ika stuffed with vegetables.
It is easy to make it.
Clean a whole squid and wash and boil lightly.
Cut cucumber, celery and carrot like pens.
then stuff them into squid tightly.
Tight stuffing is better because of good looking.
Then marine in olive oil vinegar sauce for a while.
Slice it and serve.
I think this is a good for summer time. Did I sell it? A Japanese customer order it.
And I gave to my favorite customers, Jessica and her friends. They loved it.


Gaspacho is not Japanese food. But I make it with soy sauce. Yes, this is Japanese food.
Many customers like my gaspacho. I use this recipe from a Japanese chef who owns an Italian restaurant in Tokyo.
Of course, I arranged my way.
Let's make gaspacho and make your family happy in summer time.
You need cucumber, celery, onion, green pepper, red pepper, tomato, garlic, ginger, carrot, avocado.
Then, add tomato sauce, lemon juice, Worcester sauce, soy sauce, pepper, white wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, sugar, honey, olive oil.
And blend them and strain.
See? You can make it. I like Home Depot word. "You can do it, I can help you."

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Sushi Omakase

I have Sushi Omakase customers sometimes.
It is fun to make any omakase, chef choice dishes. I made below.

1, Blue fin Ohtoro Aburi Sushi, Seared ohtoro with sea salt and lemon
2, Flying fish with fresh ginger and scallion
3, Squid with shiso and spicy cod fish roe
4, Halfbeak, sayori with fresh ginger and scallion
5, Live scallp with lemon
6, Blue fin tuna with nikiri soy sauce, fresh wasabi
7, Sea eel, Anago
8, Giant Clam, Mirugai
9, Big eye tuna chutoro

I've been known this customers since Soto around 1995. This was a son's birthday dinner from mother.

Matt Kuchar

We had Kuchar Family on Saturday.
Who is Matt Kuchar? If you don't play golf, you don't know. He is a PGA tour professional golfer.
It was just before US Open and he need to Taka;s Power. I made US Open Win Win Roll for him.
He lives in Atlanta and this was not a first time.
I went to see last year's AT&T Classic.
He is doing well this year( 2 times of Top 10). I told him that I was very happy of his good play this year. He told me that he was also happy.
He is always smiling even during a game. And he is a gentleman.
I cannot play like him but I try. Thanks Matt.

We had Ian Poulter, Camiro Villegas, Alex Chezka, Luke Donald before.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Cold Udon

This is my lunch. I like noodles. In summer, I eat cold udon, soba and hiyashi chuka. It is easy to make them.
Boil water and add noodle and wash, keep cool and cut vegetables. Ready to eat.
Ask me if you try these things at your home.
How much is the cost? Less than $2.00 per serving.
Save money, gas price is higher and higher. But you have to eat good food. Thanks.

How to cook steam rice

Cooking rice? It is easy. Wash rice and soak and dry out, then cook.
But it is not easy.
Let's wash rice fast.
Use a strainer and wash rice with your hands. Most of rice are light wash rice recently. Dump the water a couple times and run the water. Soak in a water about 30minutes and see the a crop. If it is completely white, it is ready to cook. If you see some clear parts, need to soak more. Then, dry out for a while and cook. I use 2 thinks for cooking rice. A green can is a kind of chemical for sushi rice. A clear bottle is liquid kelp. I use a charcoal for cleaning water. This charcoal is called Binchotan. It is made from oak. Just think, it is same as a filter in a fish tank. Charcoal is great thing. If you don't have a rice cooker, you can do it with a deep pan. Cook 15 minutes with strong fire and 5 minutes with weak fire and cut fire and leave it for 10 minutes.
Water and rice proportion is important. Ask your rice. If it is new crop, less water is better. I normally do it 100 rice: 90 water. But new crop season, 100 rice : 70-80 water.
This is short grain rice only. Other rice? I don't know. I am a Japanese.

Inari Zushi

This is traditional Japanese sushi. Inari is deep fried tofu skin marinated sweet soy sauce vinegar.
It is just like a bag and we stuff sushi rice in it.
Inari zushi is not on the menu but I can make it. Some customers ask me.
I think it is good for kids because of sweetness. And parents can save money because just sushi rice in it and no fish.
I make this for next day lunch. I joined a golf tournament 2 weeks ago and I brought this for them. It is fine for high temperature because of vinegar and cooked. Everybody enjoyed it.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Blue fin tuna, Hon maguro

Blue fin tuna came yesterday.

This is unusual because of out of season.

The big difference is thickness of toro part. It is 2 times thicker than big eye tuna. Fat? It is average and not bad.

I made toro abuli special. Abuli means burn out side, same as tataki. Oh toro part is a little bit chewy and make soft by burn. Sea salt and lemon is the best, no soy sauce please!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Sayori, Half beak

What a beautiful skin fish! This is sayori. It is available most of time. Sayori is same family as flying fish.
Skin is almost silver and meat is clear.
Soyori's stomach is black. Of course I clean and serve it.
Black stomach has negative image.
It means has something mind. In Japan, " She is like sayori." means, she is slender and beautiful but has something in her mind. We need to be careful.
But this fish doesn't have anything at all. It is good with ginger and scallion. Please try. But don't become like a sayori person.