31 December 2012

Bento! #193: Spicy Soba

It's the bunch of noodles by the top of the photo.

From the "buffet" cafeteria. Didn't check what it is actually called in Japanese - sorry! Anyways, it wasn't so spicy, and in fact it tasted great. :) No spiciness, no fireworks. Nonetheless, have a great 2013 ahead!

30 December 2012

Bento! #192: Stir-fried pork with cabbage and green bell peppers

I forgot to check what this is called, but that's exactly what it is. There are some onions and black peppers and maybe soy sauce for seasoning. Tastes a little bit like some Filipino dishes. I put it on a bed of lettuce as well, and got two cherry tomatoes, cream puff, rice, and Chinese-style soup. All for under 400 yen. Pretty good.

29 December 2012

Bento! #191: Chikin Teriyaki Piza

Only ~220 yen at the OK Everyday Low Prices supermarket in downtown Atsugi, compared to the usual ~260 yen at Lopia supermarket in Atsugi Trellis. This one is made by Nippon Ham / ニッポンハム / nippon hamu. They also call this as piza / ピザ, not pittsa / ピッツァ, but the two mean the same thing. They also advertise that there are three kinds of "natural cheese" / nachuraru chiizu / ナチュラルチーズ in this thing, plus teriyaki sauce, of course, and, well, corn. Of course. I checked the ingredients, and apparently there's also some margarine / marugarin / マルガリン in there somewhere. But overall, it's quite a delicious but inexpensive meal.

28 December 2012

Bento! #190: Tan tan men

Very spicy, Chinese-style ramen noodles. But this is actually Japanese-style, with the egg and the little bit sweet meat, and not very, very spicy unlike in actual restaurants and maybe unlike in China. To me, it looks like spaghetti with the water undrained. Check out Wikipedia.

27 December 2012

Bento! #189: "Roast Leg," Okra salad, Mitsuya Cider, and Asahi Super Dry Draft Beer (in Can)

I like Asahi beer, but last time I drank a regular can of it, I didn't really finish it all, so I decided to try this smaller can -- which is less than half the size but more than half the price. I also "discovered" this Mitsuya Cider thing -- a carbonated drink (sparkling water?) that I guess doesn't have as much caffeine as Pepsi or Coke. Mitsu means three, Ya means arrow, fyi. Mitsuya Cider is also by Asahi!

My dinner was rather expensive -- over 500 yen (with 1 pack of instant rice), though it's probably just under 500 yen because I finished only half of the okura. The roosuto reggu wasn't that big, too, and the whole meal didn't really feel enough for me, but I guess that's the effect of eating less rice.

26 December 2012

25 December 2012

Atsugi Catholic Church Filipino Community Christmas Party - Japan! Japan! #41 - YouTube

The Filipino church choir here at Atsugi Catholic Church (厚木カトリック教会 / Atsugi katorikku kyoukai) sang a classic Filipino Christmas song, "Ang Pasko ay Sumapit," during the Filipino and English-speaking community's Christmas party. Here's my rough translation of the lyrics:
Christmas has come.
Let us all be a-singing
beautiful melodies,
for God is love.
When Christ was born,
there were 3 kings who visited,
and each one of them
offered their own gifts.
The new year means a change for the better
so that our society becomes more joyful.
Let's work hard so that we can achieve abundance.
Let us sing
while the world is still.
The day has come
with the Child from Heaven.
Let us love each other,
and follow the Golden Rule.
And, from now on,
even when it's not Christmas, let us be giving.
Even when it's not Christmas, let us be giving.
Here are more photos I took on the day of the Christmas party:

Merry Christmas, everyone!

24 December 2012

Bento! #188: Kurisumasu Mirukureepu

A Ginza Cozy Corner (popular cake store around Japan) Kurisumasu mirukureepu / クリスマスミルクレープ / "mill crepe(?)". 210 yen here at the cafeteria. It's that thing in the center I got for dessert to go with my salad bar stuff and M size power don. This whole meal cost me over 700 yen. I just thought to myself -- this, for the sake of journalism (or blogging). It's worth it. :)

Merry Christmas, everyone!

22 December 2012

Crazy weather, Episode 2.

My app says 10 degrees.

My thermometer says 20.

This is an extreme though. My other thermometer, which was more under shade than this, was saying 15.

Later that night, my weather app said 0 degrees, one thermometer said 0, one thermometer said 2.

21 December 2012

Bento! #187: McDonald's "Chikin Tatsuta Wafuu Oroshi Baagaa"

670 yen for a regular "M" set, plus 100 yen I think to upsize to an "L" set. There is actually a chikin tatsuta (only) set for 20 yen less. Chikin tatsuta / チキン竜田 / チキンタツタ = Japanese-style fried breaded chicken fillet. Wafuu / 和風 / "our" (Japanese) style. oroshi / おろし = sweet sauce with mashed radish. baagaa / バーガー = burger. I got a "food magnet" - with a chicken nuggets design - for free with this meal. You can see from the box what the ingredients are: cabbage, the wafuu oroshi, the chicken tatsuta itself. The bun. And lemon. They didn't show it here, but the cabbage was almost drowning in mayonnaise - but not Japanese-style mayonnaise, mind you. And that mayonnaise was mixed with lemon. The taste of the lemon was quite strong here, but it wasn't bad at all.

It wasn't a very big burger, so I got me an extra regular hamburger for another 100 yen. Here's the freebie I got, by the way:

Food magnet? Yes I am. :D

20 December 2012

Bento! #186: Chiizu Guratan Hamu Katsu

Or チーズグラタンハムカツ / Cheese Gratin and Ham "Cutlet." It's just 105 yen each from the cafeteria, it's that thing on the lower right. I also got sasami chiizu katsu / ササミチーズカツ / chicken fillet and cheese "cutlet," that thing on the upper left (157 yen each), but this time I used tonkatsu sauce, instead of ketchup. For the CGHC, I tried it with ketchup and mayo.

It's the typical thickness of ham, but it's not how thick it is in their photo. But oh well. This felt more like okonomi katsu though. With not so much meat, this felt more carbs than protein. Won't probably try it again, but who knows. :D

19 December 2012

Bento! #185: Buraun Soosu no Yasai

On the upper left, the "Vegetables with Brown Sauce" / ブラウンソースの野菜. But, they explained that it's basically demi glace sauce. Just as I suspected. There's broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and pumpkin in there, but I didn't get potatoes. This whole plate -- inclusive of two grilled chicken fillets, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, half a frankfurter with ketchup, and two cream puffs (ice cream inside!) is just 498 yen. I also have 98 yen (i.e. not so much) of rice on the side.

18 December 2012

Bento! #184: Sasami Sutikku

Or ササミスティック, literally "chicken fillet stick." A.k.a. "chicken fingers." Pretty good. 250 yen for this bunch from the supermarket. Good for one meal. :D

17 December 2012

Chokoreeto! #15 & #16: Dars Bitter and a "Dark" Kitkat

Dars (ダース / daasu) Bitter (ビター / bitaa) above. Kitkat "オトナの甘さ / otona no umasa" = sweetness for adults???

16 December 2012

Bento! #182 & #183: A couple of burgers I tried at Dom Dom (Hamburger Restaurant)

甘辛チキンバーガー / uma kara chikin baagaa / sweet and spicy chicken burger. 450 yen for a regular set. Plus 110 yen for an "L" set.

Dom Dom's regular hamburger, "only" 180 yen. Love the beef(?) patty, (pause), ketchup, (pause), pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun. Yum, yum, yum.

15 December 2012

Bento! #181: Merii Kurisumasu Katto Furuutsu

398 yen from the supermarket. Good for one lunch. Merry Christmas / merii kurisumasu / メリークリスマス. "Cut Fruit" / カットフルーツ / katto furuutsu. I got this because it's just double the price for quadruple the amount of fruits.

Bento! #180: "Hashed Beef" Omelette Rice

Or, ハッシュドビーフオムライス / hasshudo biifu omu raisu, still a part of the "X'mas Aussie Fair" at the cafeteria here. 399 yen for an "M" size. It's more like omelette rice with brown sauce. Not so much beef. Wouldn't wanna try this again. But what can you do, you can probably say that, here, eggs are generally more expensive than regular beef, especially Australian beef. Oh, and they described the omelette as "soft scrambled eggs." That's just exactly what it is.

14 December 2012

Crazy, crazy weather(s).

Being a beach-loving dude from tropical Philippines, I'm always concerned about the weather and, more specifically, the temperatures here in Japan. I'd like to call myself a summer person, because I realized that while we in the Philippines consider the temperatures there from December to February as cool, they're still actually summer temperatures in other countries, Japan, included, and even warmer than the summers in even more countries and places.

Anyways, so I always check the weather and temperature forecasts practically on a daily basis. In fact, maybe almost on a bi-hourly basis. I always felt Accuweather has the most accurate temperatures (at least for current conditions), but now I installed my own adhoc thermometer just outside my window, and now I'm using three other weather apps: Meteorologist on my desktop, the default Weather app on my phone (Yahoo!-based weather actually), and this "Celsius" app, also on my phone.

I took screenshots of the temperatures at one time, and here they are.

13 December 2012

Bento! #179: Ton Kara Raamen

Sorry for the blurry photo!
Or, spicy pork ramen. Ton / とん = buta / ぶた = 豚 = pork / pig. Kara(i) / 辛(い) = spicy. Whoops, I forgot how much, but somewhere around 400 yen. Or less. Or more. I forgot, sorry!

12 December 2012

Bento! #178: Okonomi Nori Bentou

"Anything goes" lunch box. お好みのり弁当 / okonomi nori bentou, where okonomi is the same as in okonomiyaki or okonomi soosu (okonomi(yaki) sauce), and nori = the seaweed typically used for sushi. 430 yen from 3F and yummy.

Plus, I had a coupon to get a 600mL 16-leaf caffeine-free green tea (juu roku cha / 十六茶) for free with this purchase:

11 December 2012

Winter is coming.

December arrived and the temperatures started not going above 10 degrees. At one point, different weather sites reported temperatures of -1 to 0 degrees, although in my ad hoc home measurements, it only became as low as 1-3 degrees. I thought winter was here already.

Alas, by the end of the week, temperatures even reached 18 degrees by my measurements. Starting last night though, there were strong winds. I thought it was nature's way of blowing away the leaves from the trees, and from the ground to certain spots so that they can easily be taken away to become food for next year's new trees and plants and flowers. Alas, today, most red and yellow and brown leaves are now almost gone from the trees. Winter is near.

10 December 2012

Bento! #177: Oojii Biifu Don

Oojii biifu don / オージービーフ丼 = Aussie Beef Rice Bowl. Apparently with shariapin soosu / シャリアピンソース / Chaliapin sauce, which as they explained is a minced onion sauce. They also call it "grilled beef," but it doesn't really look like grilled beef to me. It's more like boiled beef strips. And it felt oily - may be it was fried? Here, the word "grilled" / yaki could mean either fire-grilled or teppan-"grilled" (which is more like pan-fried). Anyway, comparing this to the previous Aussie Fair meal I had, apparently it would seem to them that Australians would always have potato and broccoli to go with their beef. In this case, it's actually three star-shaped hashed browns (or ハッシュドポテト / hasshudo poteto / hashed potato to them). I got the "M" size don for 399 yen.

09 December 2012

Racing on the streets of Japan

Well, not really. Check out this video on RAW.

08 December 2012

Nice house

Can you see the chrysanthemums? Oh and those reddening autumn leaf colors.

07 December 2012

Chokoreeto #14: Alfort Aroma Bitter

Well don't be surprised, now, right?

Oh, and if you still haven't heard, I've gone black/bitter/less-sugar/less-carbs when it comes to chocolates. I've already lost maybe 5 kilos (around 11 lbs) just by cutting down on rice and other carbs like noodles, corn, and potatoes! Never felt better. :D

06 December 2012

Bento! #176: Fish full of roe

For dinner one night, I had the usual suspects, except this time I had this type of fish that I've tried before and wanted to avoid eating again and, well, here it is. It's 6 pieces of the fish, breaded, and deep fried, and it tastes quite good actually. But inside, it's mostly roe (fish eggs):

I heard this is healthy though. Good cholesterol? Hooray for that! By the way, sorry, I forgot what this is called!

05 December 2012

Bento! #175: Atsu-kiri Roosu Tonkatsu Bentou

Thick-cut Roast Pork Cutlets lunch set. Atsu-kiri / 厚切り = thick-cut. Roosu / ロース = roast (but usually meant for pork)/

04 December 2012

Bento! #174: Fried stuff from the cafeteria, and Christmas tiramisu

Didn't get much sleep before taking this lunch, and I ended up with almost 750 yen worth of food. There's that pork katsu with mayoneezu, hamu katsu, chikin tatsuta something, and ebi furai (shrimp fry). The latter, fyi for those who don't know, is different from ebi tempura. I also got this boiled egg that's been in some kind of soy-sauce-looking sauce (though it wasn't so soy-sauce-salty). And I also got this I don't know what it is but they call it shuu kuriimu, or cream puff, with ice cream inside. And I also got this limited edition "Christmas tiramisu," which is the rather expensive item here, at 210 yen.

03 December 2012

Bento! #173: Biifu Katsu Tomato Soosu

Thanks to Okada-san for the photo!

Now this is rare. Beef Katsu. There's a Christmas "Aussie Fair" / オージーフェアー / Oojii Feaa at the cafeteria today, featuring different kinds of beef dishes. This is the first one I tried. I think it's 294 yen for one plate, which I got with "S" size mugi gohan and some stuff from the salad bar. It didn't feel like beef beef inside, more like ground beef with a not-so-healthy mix of meat and fats, but it tasted great. I guess I still like tonkatsu or chikin katsu better.

Bento! #172: A special, limited edition "hamburg"

Tastes like sweet and sour, actually. More like sweet.

02 December 2012

Bento! #171: Buta Suki Don

399 yen, I think, for this "M" size rice bowl. Buta = pork. Suki = as in similar to sukiyaki, which is usually beef. And usually sweet. This is sweet. I also used a "roasted nuts" salad dressing.

"Coffee is as Japanese as baseball and beer."

Amen. Check out this article on NYTimes.com. I chanced upon the article while doing a search for "strong coffee in Japan." When I'm checking out the coffee section at the supermarket, all I see are レギュラーコーヒー / regyuraa koohii / regular coffee. I've already tried "Kilimanjaro blend," and maybe one other type of "regular coffee." Not what I was looking for. Of course, I could just get espresso, but that's not what I'm looking for either. Anybody got suggestions?

01 December 2012

Bento! #170: Sakurahime Chikin Katsu

294 yen plus 73 yen mugi gohan no esu saizu (small rice with barley) from the cafeteria. Sakurahime is a brand of chicken that supposedly has three to five times more vitamins and minerals than the usual chicken. Nice. And pretty big. For this, I put tonkatsu soosu (Tonkatsu sauce).