Monthly Archives: October 2011

Self Rolled Sushi Recipe

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A supervisor of mine invited me to her house for dinner last week Thursday. She pulled out the big guns and we had ‘self rolled sushi’. Yum. If you’re interested in Japanese food, give this a try. Watch me now pretend like I’m an expert chef, lol.

You’ll need:

  • filling – it can be all or just one of the following: sashimi (raw fish), fried egg, tuna with mayonnaise, lettuce, ham slices, crab, shrimp (ebi in Japanese)
  • dried seaweed sheets (there is probably a proper name for these but I don’t know it so ‘dried seaweed sheets’ it will be)
  • steamed white rice
  • wasabi (Japanese hot pepper)
  • soy sauce
Okay, here we go:
1. Place the seaweed sheet on a flat surface or plate.
2. Put about two spoon fulls of  the rice on one end of the sheet. You could place the rice in the centre of the sheet instead if you prefer.

Rice on sheet

3. Put your filling on top of the rice.
4. (Optional) Use the ends of the chopsticks, dip them in some soy sauce and then just tap those dipped ends on the rice and filling. I do this just to get some flavour going on inside the roll.
5. Put some wasabi on the filler. You can put as much as you like but remember that with wasabi, a little goes a LONG way. It’s really hot, but unlike Jamaican pepper the intensity dies down within about fifteen seconds.

Sashimi, wasabi and soy sauce added

6. If you had everything on one end of the sheet, then roll the sheet inward going in the opposite direction (I hope that makes sense). If you had it in the centre, fold both sides in and place one on top of the other.

All put together

7. You can dip one or both sides of the roll (the sides that allow you to see inside the roll) in some soy sauce to give it more flavour.

The end for dipping

8. Eat and enjoy!
Two things to mention:
I’ve heard it said that the soy sauce helps kill the bacteria on the fish. I don’t know how true it is though, so be cautious. I haven’t gotten sick since being here.
I learned just that day that sashimi is simply the raw fish and sushi is when it’s added to rice. I didn’t knooow y’all! Don’t laugh at me! 😀
It’s not something I’d eat everyday (and neither does my supervisor and her family). Self rolled sushi is supposedly a hosting meal and not an everyday dinner.
Take care.

Explore Japan through JET

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*warning*…this entire post is gonna sound like one big advertisement…can’t say I never tol’ yah!

sooooo…

JET Programme applications are out (in case you didn’t know)! At least, that’s so for the Jamaican folks. “JET” stands for Japan Exchange and Teaching and it’s the reason I’m living in Japan. I remember this time last year. I was so frantic, checking out different forums, youtubing, randomly google searching, whatever it took to gather as much information as possible. I guess I did a pretty good job 🙂

So, what is JET (or rather, the JET Programme)?

It’s a programme that takes persons with first degrees (or higher) in ANYTHING, from many countries (Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda, the U.S, Canada, England, Ireland, Scotland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, France….if I’ve left out a country please let me know) to do two things:

A) teach English as a foreign language to Japanese elementary, junior high or senior high students (you do NOT need to be a teacher or have any teaching experience for this job by the way. There are seminars, workshops, books, sempais and the good old internet to help you out)

B) teach about your culture, and to some extent, other foreign cultures (I’m here teaching about Halloween at the moment…what the heck do I really know about Halloween?)

Basically, JET fosters grassroots internationalization through classroom interaction. Now that we’ve gone through all that, here are the perks of the programme:

1)paid trip all the way from your home country to your new prefecture (like parish or state) in Japan

2) 3 days (unless it changes) to live it up in wonderful Tokyo. Actually, that’s 2 nights really, because the 3 DAYS will be spent doing orientation related thing-a-ma-jigs

3) damn good pay…enough to feed, clothe and entertain yourself very well especially if you’re loan free. This is especially great if you’ve recently graduated from university.

4) the chance to live in and explore one of the world’s gems. You get to see the real Japan, not just the stereotypical thing that we are often exposed to.

5) the opportunity to be strategically placed and financially competent enough to travel all over Asia. I mean, really, how many of us will be able to just hop, skip and jump to places like Bali for the rest of our lives?

6) paid trip back home when you’re done with the programme

Now that you’re intrigued, keep in mind that it would be good to think about the following things before applying:

-can you stand being away from all your comforts and familiarities for a long time?

-are you entirely open to being thrown into not just a culture which is drastically different from your own, but into a place with a language and alphabetic system that you do not understand? I mean, somewhere like Spain, or France speaks a different language, but at least you can read words. Here, if you don’t speak Japanese, things will just look like pictures to you. Talk about suddenly being illiterate.

-can you handle sticking out like a sore thumb everywhere, ALL.THE.TIME?

Really, think about it.

I encourage any and everyone who meets the requirements to apply. I’m all about trying new things, exploring new terrain, and pushing yourself to new limits, and this programme certainly gives (and sometimes forces you) the opportunity to do all that and more. So APPLY, and good luck!

P.S

Useful links are:

myargonauts channel on youtube

http://www.jetprogramme.org/forums

Jamaican online application forms and information are available here:

http://www.jamaica.emb-japan.go.jp/en/cultureandeducation/jet_open2012.html

The Wife I Wish To Be

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When I grow up (ha!) I want to be married. Yep yep, I want a husband to love, to comfort, to bounce ideas off of, and to have all that and more reciprocated. I know I want to be married, but it’s taken me a while to know exactly what type of woman I want to be for this man. Actually no…that’s not entirely true. I’ve had an idea some time now, but recent events have had me thinking about it more in depth.

These are my desires of MYSELF, for MY HUSBAND. Following? (I also know the type of man I want to be my husband. I know what I want from this man. I know my expectations of him and of this relationship. But that’s for a whole other post. Today I choose to focus on who I want to be for him).

So, who is that? I want to be a woman worthy of respect. I’ll go a step further and say not only should I be worthy, but I want to be one of those women you don’t even think about NOT respecting. I don’t want to be a bitch or a pest, I just want to be an outstanding person, so outstanding that my husband sits down for at least ten seconds every day and thanks God he has me in his life. I have a lot of good role models of people I perceive to be good wives. My mother is on the list of course, but I get this sort of inspiration from other people as well. Michelle Obama comes to mind. Sure, I don’t know her, most likely will never meet her, but when I look on her I get this sense of “wow-she’s-a-tough-cookie-and-you-know-she-can-hold-her-own-and-you-KNOW-Barack-just-loves-that-about-her-and-respects-it”. Anyone else get that feeling?

I want to be that woman that my husband doesn’t even think twice about with anything. I aspire to be the woman that my husband is CERTAIN can prepare a healthy, hearty, delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner, and can greet him with a clean, well kept house but can also be left responsible for hiring the helper if need be because she (the wife) is a good decision maker. I want to be the woman whose husband knows that she will have the children bathed, clothed and fed by 6 p.m and he never has to worry about his children looking raggedy and embarrassing.

I want to be the type of woman that he can take out to dinner with just the two of them or to a cocktail party full of intellectuals and high society folks because he knows she is articulate, can hold a conversation well and is cultured.  I want to be the kind of woman whose husband WANTS to share her with the world, cause she’s just so good. I want to be the woman he knows he can send papers to to proofread while he’s doing his Masters because she is smart (at least with grammar, lol). I want to be the woman he feels comfortable making financial decisions with because she manages her own money well and has general monetary sense. Heck, I want to be the woman he feels comfortable leaving the financial decisions to ENTIRELY if he feels like it without worrying about bankruptcy or general mismanagement. I also want to be a woman that can bring home money and make a significant contribution to the household income throughout my working days.

I want to be the woman he wants to entertain and whose company he loves sharing, but who he also understands has a life outside of him. I want to be a woman who has a life outside of her marriage and whose husband doesn’t worry about these other activities and people.

I want to be the woman who he knows will not take any of his crap, so he shouldn’t even try. No ridiculous jealousy or rudeness…no siree bob.

Of course there’s a lot more. I pretty much want to be the woman whose husband knows he could cheat (cause you know, I won’t be snooping or faasing and well, people cheat), but doesn’t even contemplate doing it because he doesn’t need to. He knows he can trust me because I’m responsible and smart, so sure, we can and will run things by each other, but he doesn’t have to fret about anything I handle.  What do you think? I mean, that’s a heck of a woman. Do you know any women like this?

I don’t want to wear the pants in the relationship. I have no desire to be a dictator. In fact, I want my husband to know I am his biggest supporter. My aim would be to be the kind of woman that can give him the mental, spiritual and physical satisfaction he needs to be a happy camper; strong enough to be his love and best friend, but also being able to be MY own rock and to do things on my own. I love him, but I don’t need him, and any other man would be HAPPY to have me.

Mmhm…that’s I who I want to be when that time comes 🙂

-Minny