Friday, October 31, 2008

Green Thumbs Round 3 (Insects 1.5 - Humans .5)

The move to A's garage overall seems to be a good one (earning us a .5 score), as you can see, the plants have sprouted and seem to be growing nicely. However, notice the empty half of the planter on the left? The scale bugs attacked our rocket again, and rather than try to fight them, we pulled it all up, and are just giving up on the rocket for now (earning the insects a .5 score as well).

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Highlight of the Day #2

My first sighting of sun dried tomatoes! And yes, that is a rat in the background poised to nab one for himself. Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Note to Self

If you know that a specific food item doesn't agree with your system, don't think that turning it into a sauce and warming it up on the stove is going to confuse your body into thinking that it is ingesting something else.

Gyuunyuu does not do my body good.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Stovetop Cooking 1.1

Stir-fry with bok choy, broccoli stems (florets went into yesterday's soup), bean sprouts and seitan. Yay for faux meat!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Stovetop Cooking 1.0

Our little point and shoot camera doesn't do this soup justice, it was lovely and really tasty. My take on Heidi's Ten Minute Couscous Soup with broccoli and mushrooms.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Clearly Delicious

Do you remember Crystal Pepsi? The colorless soda that had a short-lived life in the early 90's? It seemed like it was a big fad for a short period of time, then quickly fizzled out and was gone from all of the supermarket shelves.

Ever wonder what happened to the warehouses full of crystal clear deliciousness once it was pulled from your local 7-11? It was allowed to ferment and mature, resulting in the cloudy version sold here - Pepsi White!

Alright, probably not, but I like my explanation.

Reconnaissance Mission

Okay, so we weren't exactly trying to gather information, but the title might help to make our botched operation sound a little cooler.

Our neighbors across the street have a persimmon tree that I have grown more and more obsessed with as the fruit has gotten riper and riper, and they seemingly haven't harvested any of it. Thankfully I'm not alone in my fixation, A has been intrigued with the persimmon tree too. So last night after our Halloween party, A, M, and I crept out into the street with the hopes of snagging some persimmons. The fruit is concentrated higher up on the tree, and even getting on M's shoulders wasn't enough. We got a metal pole from A's garage, and I proceeded to try and whack down a persimmon while balancing atop M. I was overcome with a massive fit of the giggles and couldn't reach any of the ripe fruit. As I was bent over laughing, a light went out in the house and we became convinced that the neighbors had spotted us and were now watching us from the window. We quickly crept back to our apartment empty-handed. This time.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Man in the Mirror

Riding the subway always provides a great opportunity for people watching. By every door is a small mirror, and you'd be amazed at how much use it gets. Most often it seems to be young men that preen and adjust their hair - and it's not just the subway mirrors either, any reflective surface, like a shop window, gets used as a make-shift mirror for last minute tweaks. Today was another rainy day, and one gentlemen I passed was using a large puddle as a personal reflection device.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Green Thumbs Round 2 (Insects 1 - Humans 0)

After losing our battle to the scale insects and the bush o' death (sure it's pretty, but it's deceiving), M & I assessed our losses. All of the spinach, rocket, basil, and green onions were consumed or in a very sorry state (leaving us with just the lemon tree), so we pulled up everything and started over.

This time we've moved the planter boxes to the smaller porch away from the plant eating shrubbery. Our little sprouts are now living on top of A's garage and they seem to be quite happy with their new home. As you can see they are growing like crazy. I'm convinced we're going to win this round.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Scrambled Tofu

For some reason, most eggs here taste and smell very different to me than US eggs. Perhaps it's all in my head, but regardless, I've found myself turned off from the thought of them, and have mostly only been using the whites when necessary in recipes. So tonight for the first time I tried scrambled tofu. I used a bit of a cross between Vegan Mom's recipe and PPK's recipe and although my version turned out an other-worldly shade of yellow, I found it quite tasty and will definitely be making some again.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Bucket O' Crud

Sounds delish, hm? I figured I'd miss our dishwasher (and I do), but I never thought much about missing the garbage disposal. Trash is separated out here into a number of different categories, one of which is burnable. I guess it isn't any different than having a compost pile (although that would be decidedly less stinky), but all of our food scraps and bits of paper all go into our burnable bin.

Built into our kitchen sink is a metal bucket with holes in it, so when prepping a meal, peelings and such can just get tossed in the sink. The food will get caught in the bucket and liquids are still able to pass through the holes. When the bucket gets full, it can be lifted out and dumped into the burnable bin. Thankfully A turned us on to mesh bucket liners, which make the emptying process a bit neater and easier.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

It's Raining on My Laundry

It's a rainy day here, and I have a couple of errands to run. My umbrella won't get to have as much fun as I do, as it's a no-no to bring your drippy umbrella into a store with you. So depending on what stores I go to, my umbrella will either have to live in an umbrella stand outside of the store until I'm finished shopping, or it will get to be stuffed into an umbrella-sized plastic baggie so I can carry it around with me sans offending drips.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Rain Chains

Instead of the rain spouts seen on most American houses, the Japanese often have rain chains, which serve the same purpose, but are really lovely.

The two types I've seen most often are interlinking circles and little teeny bucket-like shapes. Functional and beautiful!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Highlight of the Day

I found a big fat block of good Cheddar cheese today at our nearby organic store! woo HOO! One food craving solved, 56 to go....