Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Japan eats

Not to discount its culture and richly diverse landscape, but Japan's best comes in the form of malls. And luckily, they come in the millions.

The large, towering buildings congregate in the handfuls as a shoppers delight. But it's not the clothing that drew us in. It was the food. The (multiple) underground levels of each mall is a foodie's delight. From Dean and Deluca and other prominently chic bakeries to winding food stalls nearly a football field deep filled with ready made or cook at home foods, Bryan and I spent hours in the cave of artificial lighting - hopping from one mall to the next (which is usually connected by underground tunnels) - absorbing, visually and otherwise, the great eats.

After two months of South East Asian travels, subjected to the same types of foods on offer - generally in the fried rice or noodle varieties - Japanese cuisine opened my mind back up to the possibility of endless menus. Every day brought a different meal. And every day, my stomach thanked me.

Taiyaki - fish shaped pastry (this one filled with vanilla custard and chocolate sauce)

Kamameshi - iron pot of rice and toppings found in Nara

green pea sweet pastry


Shabu-shabu and sukiyaki - meats and veggies cooked in broth or soy sauce


Okonomiyaki - the iconic Japanese pancake
unidentified street food