Daikon Leaves! Yah!

February 20th, Wednesday:
  • Pork Kim Chee Bowl (Pork, Egg, Chinese Cabbage, Carrot, Green Onion)
  • Milk
  • Miso Soup (Daikon Radish, Tofu, Daikon Leaves)
  • Potato Wrap
  • Kcal: 853

Potato Wrap is potato wrapped in a tea linen, flavored with butter, and steam baked in an egg cup. It is finished when it has a very simple and light taste. 

To be honest, I didn’t feel that today’s potato wrap was all the popular with the students at my school today. I of course didn’t have a problem with it but it did have bit of a ‘frozen food’ feel to it. However the kim chee was very popular, all the left overs being eaten.
I can’t recall having daikon leaves in lunch before. This doesn’t mean we haven’t, since I on a whole do not have a good sense of time and thus memory, but at least we haven’t had them very often. They tasted good though and it is nice to know that we are using more parts of the plant not just throwing out the perfectly good tops of the daikon radish.


Suiton Soup

February 18th, Monday:


  • Suiton Soup (Wheat Dumplings, Chicken, Bean Curd, Naruto Surimi, Carrot, Daikon Radish, Green Onion)
  • Five Ingredient Kinpira (Burdock, Carrot, Pork, Satsuma-age, Sliced Konnyaku, Green Bean)
  • Natural Teriyaki Amberjack
  • Rice
  • Milk
  • Kcal: 871

So, suiton (水団) are sort of hand formed soup dumplings made of wheat flour. As you know, I love dumplings, so I liked today’s soup. It was also full of other things I love like abura-age, naruto, and carrots. Also, the five ingredient kinpira seemed a little different than before.

I’m tired today… I was so busy last weekend.

Because who doesn't want to see a close up of this awesome suiton soup?!

Because who doesn’t want to see a close up of this awesome suiton soup?!

Spicy Coconut Milk Rice

November 20th, Thursday:


  • Shoyu Ramen (Pork, Bean Sprout, Bamboo Shoot, Green Onion, Chinese Cabbage, Carrot)
  • Milk
  • Chidjimi
  • Mandarin Yogurt
  • Kcal: 775

Have your hands ever turned yellow after eating too many mandarin oranges? That comes from the pigment in the oranges. If you stop eating so many, your normal skin colour will return.

Today, we had two boys from Malaysia visit the school I went to. Because they didn’t speak Japanese and most of the teachers don’t speak English, I accompanied them to the classes as an interpreter. It was actually my first time formally serving as an interpreter and it was less difficult that I feared.

It was interesting to observe the interaction of my students/teachers with the boys. Everyone at school went out of their way to make the boys welcome, although I think there were still times when either sides were at a loss or confused about what to say/act. During the lunch break, I took them to the gymnasium to play basketball with the other students. While everyone tried to be friendly, it was over all very awkward. But at the end of the break, about 10 girls in unison together said “hello” in Malaysian to the boys. It was really touching and I felt quite proud.

Reflecting on this situation and other occasions, I think that despite what some people may say, Japanese are very interested and friendly people. (Really, I know this from my everyday experience.) But the large cultural difference between Japan and many other countries makes situations awkward or difficult. Japan should of course value and preserve their own beautiful culture. However, the reason that learning English is important is not to become perfectly fluent speakers, but to understand how to bridge that cultural gap when necessary.  cf. Nitobe Inazo.


October 3rd

October 3rd, Wednesday:

Strangers Rice Bowl (Pork, Egg, Green Onion, Onion, Bamboo Shoot, Shimeji Mushroom)
Miso Soup (Wakame Seaweed, Gluten Croutons, Green Onion)
Salt-Grilled Fatty Mackerel
Kcal: 847

I didn’t eat school lunch today.

  • 他人丼
  • 牛乳
  • みそ汁
  • とろさば塩焼き

Pork Kimchi on Rice

July 18th, Wednesday:

  • Pork Kimchi on Rice (Pork, Egg, Chinese Cabbage, Carrot, Green Onion, Sesame)
  • Milk
  • Miso Soup (Daikon Radish, Tofu, Green Onion)
  • Salt Grilled Rockfish

Today in our lunch han, we made an informal poll of whether one likes meat or fish better. Of the three girls and two boys, everyone said “meat” except for one boy. One of the girls said she didn’t like fish because of the bones. As I’ve mentioned my extraordinary dislike for eating bones previously, I am sure you already know I have much sympathy for that dislike. However, I still said I preferred fish. In Japan, meat is usually sold already cleanly cut up in pieces and deboned, but fish is sold whole often with head and tail still attached. But I remember as a child watching my mother stick her hand up inside the chicken and pull out its guts while preparing it for dinner. And that’s chicken. We didn’t eat red meat at home, but if had, I am sure it’s preparation would have been even grosser. So my student might feel meat is cleaner and easier to eat than fish, but it’s not, at least in America.

  • 豚キムチ丼
  • 牛乳
  • みそ汁
  • メバル塩焼き

Iridori Stew

July 6th, Friday:

  • Miso Soup (Daikon, Wakame, Green Onion)
  • Iridori Stew (Chicken, Burdock, Bamboo Shoot, Onion, Carrot, Shiitake Mushroom, Konnyaku)
  • Salt Broiled Boarfish
  • Rice
  • Milk

Rice is an important foodstuff without which we could not do. Not only do we eat rice, but rice flour is increasingly used in processed foods.

Iridori stew has a sort of thick Chinese-like sauce. I like the vegetables used in it, but I dislike the sauce’s texture. The boarfish was soft and tasty.
By the way, I ate English Curry packaged by the Hakodate restraunt Gotouken for dinner. It was crazy expensive–200 grams for like 500 yen or something–which was why bought it. I wanted to know why it was so expensive. It was tasty, but too spicy for me. I conjecture the reason it was so expensive is the first ingredient is fruit (apple and banana) and the second is beef. Which makes me wonder: did Englishmen really put fruit in their curry?? Or was it just because fruit and beef are by nature expensive and thus only Englishmen could afford them??

  • みそ汁
  • 炒りどり
  • つぼ鯛塩焼き
  • ごはん
  • 牛乳

Veggie Fritter on Rice

June 27th, Wednesday:

  • Veggie Fritter on Rice
  • Milk
  • Miso Soup (Cabbage, Carrot, Aburaage)
  • Cut Konbu and Lotus Root Stirfry (Konbu Seaweed, Pork, Lotus Root, Green Onion)
  • Tempura Sauce

Konbu is the bounty of Mother Ocean. Although low calorie, it has minerals and dietary fiber in abundance. It also includes a great amount of iodine that makes up the thyroid.

Today, I overheard a teacher hoping for more summer-like foods for kyuushoku. I’m from a tropical island, so I am not well acquainted with the seasonality of food, but I assume he meant that he hoped for lighter dishes, rather than the oily foods such as served today. Summer foods that immediately come to my head are warabi mochi, somen, and pineapple. However my school lunch menu exhorts me to eat lots of “summer vegetables”, that is tomatoes, eggplants, corn, squash, and cucumbers, because they help cool down the body.

  • 野菜かき揚げ丼
  • 牛乳
  • みそ汁
  • 切り昆布とレンコンの炒め煮
  • 天丼のタレ