There are a lot of things to love about Japan, from its vistas to its colorful urban scenes to its cultural experiences, from the theaters to the arcades. One thing that’s pretty hard to beat, however, is Japanese cuisine. You don’t need to travel overly far to enjoy some of those Japanese flavors, however. There are some you can make relatively easily in your own home.
The super versatile udon
Udon noodles are fat, chewy, and delicious, but most of all they are extremely versatile. Most udon dishes involve plenty of noodles, delicious broth, and additions of ingredients such as egg,s proteins, and greens. If you want an example of a relatively easy-to-make but incredibly filling udon meal, then this miso nikomi udon recipe is one that you should take a closer look at. There are simpler recipes out there, still, but you owe it to yourself to learn a couple of really good, ingredient-rich udon dishes.
Those delicious curries
The Japanese curry is one of the most popular styles of curry around. Deeply savory and mild enough to be enjoyed by all, the storebought style is often packed with additives that get in the way of its taste. However, it’s not too difficult to make a Japanese curry recipe from scratch. It requires quite a few ingredients and a lot of time to cook, but the prep time is only about ten minutes. The rest is waiting, really.
The terrific tofu
If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, then the soybean and how it’s used in Japanese cuisine can offer you a ton. There are lots of ways to make tofu but if you want it for a nice standalone meal, then the crunch of making your own Agedashi tofu is hard to beat. With a delicious tsuyu broth (or almost any kind of savory broth, really) it works as a filling yet light dinner.
Delicious glazed chicken
The ways that meat is prepared in Japanese cuisine can introduce you to some fantastic tastes. Teriyaki chicken is one of the most famous, perhaps in part due to its textural similarity to a good sticky BBQ sauce. However, the taste is very different, especially with a good miso teriyaki, which you can learn to make with only four ingredients.
A stock to go with any meal
Japanese dips tend to be pretty fantastic too. If you want to add a depth of taste to any meal, then a good umami stock can work wonders. Dashi is one such stock. You only need kombu and katuobushi, which you can get in sizeable supply on the internet even if you don’t have them at home. All you have to do is heat them in water, one after the other, to create a stock that you can keep in the fridge for one week.
If you’re craving the tastes of Japan but there are no places that do it near you and you’re not quite willing to fork out a few hundred bucks to make the trip, then hopefully the recipes above can help scratch that itch for you.