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My Japanese Table: A Lifetime of Cooking with Friends and Family (Anglais) Relié – 12 août 2011

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Book by Samuels Debra

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 14 commentaires
25 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Homestyle Japanese cooking demystified 5 septembre 2011
Par Cook vs. books - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Debra Samuels, a longtime resident of Japan, demystifies Japanese homestyle cooking in "My Japanese Table." Included are such favorites as sushi (including hand-rolled sushi and chirashi-zushi), skewers (grilled mixed veggie and tofu, chicken), donburi (one-dish meat and rice bowls), okonomiyaki (cabbage and egg "pancakes"), and a whole chapter devoted to bento, ornate Japanese lunchboxes prepared according to a strict balance of colors, flavors, and ingredients. I liked the photos of Debra's chrysanthemum bento box so much that I ordered an identical one from Japan!

"My Japanese Table" is a perfect starting point if you're new to Japanese cooking; it's not as intimidating or complicated as other Japanese cookbooks, and it uses commonplace American supermarket ingredients whenever possible. The vibrant photography and clear font make it especially easy to read and cook with. The thorough intro on Japanese cuisine includes the handy mnemonic device of "sa shi su se so" (the Japanese hiragana letters that correspond to sugar, salt, vinegar, soy sauce, and miso, the staples of the Japanese kitchen). And kudos for a particularly helpful section on Japanese ingredients with clearly labeled photos to match. There is also a handy bibliography and list of shopping resources (mostly online).

Like Tuttle Publishing's other Asian cookbooks, "My Japanese Table" is designed to fit today's busy lifestyle and includes many main-course recipes that take 30 minutes or less to cook using common (U.S.) supermarket ingredients (both the prep times and cooking times are helpfully included at the top of each recipe). Another bonus is that measurements are given both in metric and imperial measurements; no need to convert if you're cooking overseas.

I just spent six months working in (and cooking my way across) Japan, so I was really looking forward to testing these recipes. First up were the colorful matcha mochi cupcakes. Mochi are sticky pounded rice cakes (no relation to American "rice cakes") traditionally served at New Year's, but variations of mochi are found in many common Japanese desserts. I made the cupcakes as instructed and sprinkled cinnamon on top, but they still needed a little something extra, so I added the matcha frosting from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking. This gave the cupcakes an extra boost of grassy green tea flavor (and color) with a touch of sweetness (see attached photos).

Next up, I tried several of the vegetarian recipes like the Sweet Simmered Mushrooms, Pumpkin Rounds and Japanese Mushroom Mélange with Butter and Soy. In some cases, I found that I had to adjust the cooking time. In the case of the mushroom mélange, you're instructed to bake 2 pounds of mushrooms for 15 minutes (the cooking time at the top said 20), but I had to bake them for closer to 30 before the mushrooms released their juices. Also, it was difficult to fit two pounds of mushrooms into a 10 x 13 piece of parchment paper as instructed!

I was happy to see that some traditional Japanese desserts were included, mostly focused on mochi, anko (sweet red bean paste), and green tea. You'll find favorites like ichigo daifuku (ripe strawberries wrapped in a layer of bean paste and coated in mochi) and matcha and black sesame ice creams. The chapter is rounded out with instructions on how to prepare several kinds of traditional teas (sencha, matcha, and hojicha).

Debra is a patient teacher (Tuttle has dubbed her "The Julia Child of Japanese cooking") and frequently defers to Japanese colleagues, or includes stories of her life in Japan that makes "My Japanese Table" part cookbook and part travelogue. The book could have benefited from a little extra proofreading (there were several typos in addition to mismatches between stated cooking times, conflicting instructions, etc.), but overall "My Japanese Table" has something to appeal to everyone, from the meat-and-potatoes crowd to vegetarians to kids (there are several cute bento box suggestions aimed specifically at kids and teens).

(Many thanks / arigatou gozaimasu to Tuttle Publishing for generously providing a review copy)
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Great intro to cooking Japanese food 5 septembre 2012
Par Joanne Brazinski - Publié sur
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
I really enjoyed this book. It was a great combination of her memories and simple versions of Japanese food. I was particularly happy to find a recipe for Black Sesame Seed Pudding--I'd eaten some in Japan, but didn't know what it was. When I saw the recipe, I realized what it had to be. The recipe was easy to follow, too. I also made okinomiaki and they were delicious--just like the ones I had in Japan. The bento section was very helpful, too.
My only problem was, my version is on my Kindle, which is not the best to cook from. A paper copy would be better to bring into the kitchen.
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Great recipes and a great read 1 février 2013
Par Nisei-han - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Debra Samuels' "My Japanese Table" is the first book I've found that approaches the art of Japanese cooking in a way to which I can relate. Her stories about her experiences in Japan could have happened to me. I am Japanese American, but my knowledge of Japanese customs, cooking, and way of life date back to the 1920s when my father immigrated to the US. Today, Japan is a very different place.

Samuels' book gives us a modern Japanese approach to traditional Japanese cooking. The flavors and tastes remind me of my mother's cooking, but without all that work. I was especially happy to find recipes for some of my favorites: Gyoza (Japanese Pot Stickers), Kara-age (Japanese Fried Chicken), and rice bowls and noodles with different toppings. Her clear and easy to follow instructions have opened up a new way for me to approach sushi, a dish that was always too much work and we made it only once a year for our New Year celebration.

I was so impressed with "My Japanese Table" that it was my Christmas present to all members of the next generation of my family, nephews, nieces, cousins, etc. I would recommend this book at anyone who loves Japanese food!
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
a perfect book for Japanese cuisine lovers and Japanese culture lovers 27 mai 2013
Par Chiko - Publié sur
Format: Relié
"My Japanese Table" is a perfect cookbook for people who like Japanese cuisine and Japanese culture. The book is filled with beautiful pictures, simple recipes and Debra Samuels' love for Japan. The stories about her experience in Japan and the stories related to each recipe are enjoyable to read. The book has many authentic home style Japanese food recipes such as Tonjiru (Chunky miso chowder), Nikujyaga (sweet soy beef and vegetables), Namasu (carrot and daikon salad), Chikuzen Ni (simmered vegetables with chicken), Oyakodonburi (rice bowl with three toppings) and Tamagoyaki (seasoned rolled omelet). The whole chapter about Obento represents Japanese ideas about food, eating and living and it might cause a lunch revolution in the U.S. The most helpful point in the book for me is that many recipes use ingredients that are easily found in average American super markets. As a Japanese woman living in the U.S., I appreciated advice about making traditional food with American ingredients. The descriptions of Japanese ingredients are also helpful for people who are new to Japanese food. Since the author completely understands Japanese cuisine, the descriptions of Japanese food are the most natural that I've ever read. "My Japanese Table" is a great book for all people who like Japanese cuisine and want to know Japanese culture.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Beautiful cookbook from a Japanese culinary expert that makes it easy even for a beginner cook! 2 février 2013
Par G. Niwa - Publié sur
Format: Relié
I have a ton of Japanese cookbooks but I go back to this cookbook over and over again simply because I find the flavors so clean and delicious. The instructions are not complicated and the presentation of the food always inspires me. The photos are beautiful and I love the japanese dessert recipes that I don't usually see in other cookbooks. The obento chapter is a favorite and I now create fun obento lunches for my children. Debra Samuels is passionate about Japanese cuisine and it is evident in this cookbook. She enjoys sharing her love for Japan, the lifelong friends she has made there, the cuisine and what I love is that every recipe has a personal story attached to it. I totally recommend it!
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