By Bianca Sanchez
In this issue of NomNom Tabemono, I will introduce YouTube channels and other websites I go to when I cook in Japan. Even for basic recipes you did back home, it might be difficult to find those same ingredients in Japan, in the end leaving you dejected and craving a food that may be hard to make in Japan without forking over a lot of money at the import store. Finding recipes using these sources ensures that you can find it in Japanese grocery stores, and finding recipes on YouTube, especially, provides for an interactive and entertaining experience in which you can actually observe the beginning and the end of someone cooking something. It is also quite comforting to see someone actually complete a recipe from start to finish.
Here we go!
Cooking with Dog is a YouTube channel which began in 2007. Episodes feature a Japanese chef preparing and cooking well-known and not so well-known Japanese dishes, desserts, etc, while her well-behaved dog, Francis, sits beside her and narrates the show with his characteristic and memorable Japanese accent.
The great thing about this channel is that in the description, they add the ingredients in English and Japanese, so in the occasion you are ready to tackle these recipes, you already know how the ingredients are written in Japanese and don’t have to look them up on the dictionary.
It is also really adorable when Francis naps while he is technically still narrating.
This channel features many traditional Japanese dishes such as okonomiyaki, gunkanmaki sushi, donburi, miso soup, etc.
They even have a video for how to make a Japanese bento!
After browsing through the videos, they all seem very healthy and the best part is, you can find all the ingredients in Japan!
Ochi, as I like to call her, mainly focuses on dessert and snack foods. The great thing about her channel is that she uses substitutes easily found in Japanese supermarkets for the many international desserts she tackles.
For example, for the World Cup which took place this July, she made the famous Brazilian dish, pão de queijo, as known as a cheese roll. Since the Brazilian flour used in this recipe was not available in Japanese grocery stores, Ochi used mochiko (flour to make mocha) as a substitute.
She loves themed desserts and snacks, so she has a playlist for Halloween related foods and even a Japanese microwave specific playlist.
Just like Cooking with Dog, all her recipes are bilingual.
Runny, also known as Taro, attempts to make traditional Japanese dishes as well as the requests his viewers send in. He likes to stress that he is a novice and many mishaps happen in his videos in his attempts to cook, but quite honestly, it is comforting to see. Just like the above YouTube channels, Runny also posts his recipes in both English and Japanese.
Here, Taro makes hot cocoa without hot cocoa packs.
Cookpad is a Japanese recipe directory, which also offers premium service to those who purchase yearly subscriptions. Cookpad is great for checking out what Japanese housewives are eating and the search interface for this website is great because you can search according to the ingredients you have or don’t have.
Just like Ochikeron, there are a lot of international food recipes that have undergone a Japanese twist, using ingredients readily available in Japan.
If you have any other websites or YouTube channels that you go to when cooking in Japan, please respond in the comments!
Next week, keep an eye for apple desserts. :3
Until next time!
Do you have any delicious dishes or local eateries you want to share? Send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org!