The first post of 2014- Happy New Year! I have just been away on a fantastic holiday in Tokyo and have had some of the best foods I have ever tasted: fresh sushi at Himawari Sushi, zaru-udon with a rich pork broth at The Ramen Museum, tempura at Tempura Tsunahachi, chanko-nabe (hotpot eaten by sumo wrestlers) in Ryogoku, zarusoba at Kobayashi-Soba, sukiyaki, yakitori with plenty of sake and shochu, hot takoyaki in the streets of Nakano…
One dish that I didn’t expect to like but loved on my first mouthful was annin-tofu. The ones I have had in the past tasted like medicine, but annin-tofu in Japan was light and refreshing with none of the medicinal flavour! It was usually served with a sweet sauce, such as fruit jam or sesame paste.
This post wouldn’t be complete without a special mention to the konbini that were found everywhere in Tokyo and stocked all manner of snacks, bento, drinks (including canned wine!) and even stationary! I have lost count of the number of times I have visited konbini during my trip to sample an interesting drink (my favourite was the hot sweetcorn soup in a can), ice-cream mochi and fresh salads. What caught my attention in the dessert aisle were the varieties of purin (pudding) in many flavours, but sadly I did not have the chance to try them out.
My Rose and Mint Annin Tofu with Boysenberry Coulis is inspired by the annin-tofu and purin that I have encountered in Tokyo. It is soft, creamy yet light with the delicate fragrance of rose and fruity-tartness of boysenberry.