Thursday, June 30, 2011

Tomorrow is Fryday!

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Is it Fryday again?

Since I was running all over the Westside yesterday and didn't have time for lunch, I did make a detour for a couple of Tito's Tacos before heading to the Los Angeles Magazine's "The Island Style Cook-Off" in Santa Monica.

For me, Tito's Tacos has been the same for as long as I can remember, especially after baseball games or basketball practices. The only thing that has changed are the prices and the oil.

Tito's Tacos with Cheese

As many things in life change, some still remain the same.

Happy Fryday!

Tito's Tacos
11222 Washington Place
Culver City, CA 90230
(310) 391-5780

Photo by Jay Terauchi
(c) Kahuna of the Kitchen

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Tapioca Day?

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June 28 is National Tapioca Day!

I was never really a fan of tapioca pudding growing up, so about 12 years ago when I was introduced to boba and bubble tea, I really wasn't interested in trying it. Since boba was explained to me like a soft gummy bear that has a sweet taste, I gave it a try.

Tapioca Pearls

Tapioca pearls are make from the starch of the cassava root. When cooked, these pearls become a sweet chewy ball with a gummy bear texture. Tapioca pearls or boba are added to various drinks, such as tea, milk, juice, smoothies, and coffee.

Strawberry Mango Iced Green Tea
with Boba

So today, I'm enjoying National Tapioca Day with boba...

Can I Please get a Boba Straw?

Photos by Jay Terauchi
Jay Eats
©Jay Terauchi

Monday, June 27, 2011

Ramen Monday - June 27

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Ramen Monday is upon us again!

Last week, it was Kakuni Ramen at Ramen Yamadaya and this week is Foo Foo Tei in Haciendia Heights. Thanks to Keizo ( who tired all 31 varieties of ramen here, I knew they had something very different than the other ramen shops. I've had about 6 different ones here and do have my favorites.

Twitter friend Cat (@thedailydish) mentioned to me last night that she wanted an omelet and that's all that I could think of on my way to Foo Foo Tei. I remembered that they had a crab omelet ramen, but couldn't remember the name, until I saw it on the menu. BTW, the ramen is listed on the backside of the menu.

Ten-Shin Ramen
Foo Foo Tei
A hearty meal...

#21 Ten-Shin Ramen
Crab Omelet Noodle Soup with Gravy

Not your typical ramen, but I wanted something different

I got here just as they opened for lunch and sat at a table right away.
By the time I left, 30 minutes later, there were 11 people waiting.

Crab Omelet, Noodles, Flying Fish Roe, Green Onions, and Gravy

The Gravy goes well with the noodles.

Real Crab
Not imitation...

Foo Foo Tei
15018 Clark Avenue
Hacienda Heights, CA 91745
(626) 937-6585

It's in an industrial/residential area, one side of the street is industrial, not your typical neighborhood for a noodle restaurant. Lot or street parking, the parking lot fills up pretty fast. Foo Foo Tei has beer, sake, and a full kitchen menu, but most patrons order ramen.

See you next Monday...

Photos by Jay Terauchi
(c) Kahuna of the Kitchen

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Before it's Over, One Last Look...

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Now this is the way to close out National Seafood Month with some crab and lobster...

Being in the industry, I often visit the fish wholesalers to either purchase items or to stay on top of what what's in season. I don't usually don't find crab or lobsters this large for restaurants. Not many people can finish off a 4 lb lobster themselves, but family style, the larger the better.

On a recommendation from my friend Danny, we headed to Garden Grove for lobster and crab

The Newport Special Crab
Sweet and flavorful

Lobster with Ginger and Green Onions
Order it with noodles
Very Good!

The seafood was reasonably priced and very tasty, I'll be back. This was a nice way to close out June's National Seafood Month!

BTW, not sure why, but August is also National Seafood Month. Go figure...
It just gives me more of an opportunity to talk about seafood.

10541 Bolsa Avenue
Garden Grove, CA 92843
(714) 554-3996

Pass me a Claw!

Photos by Jay Terauchi

Dim Sum Saturday

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Dim sum translates something close to "touch the heart" but for me it's tea with breakfast or lunch. Having a variety of different choices is always a favorite of mine, love Spanish Tapas too. The variety of dishes range from steamed, baked, and fried or what I call the major food groups. I'm joking, so please no letters.

I usually start with the most popular ones: Shrimp and Pork Sui Mai and Shrimp Ha Gow

Sui Mai
Shrimp and Pork

Ha Gow

Cha Sui Bao
Steamed BBQ Pork Buns
Another steamed menu item

This could be a meal in itself, but I prefer the baked ones...

Chinese Broccoli
Yes mom, I had my greens today...

Usually served with oyster sauce

Sesame Seed Ball
Sweet rice with a sweet sesame seed paste inside
One of my favorites growing up...

They didn't really have a lot of different dishes, but I was happy with today's lunch.
Now I'm ready for a nap...

Happy Dim Sum Saturday!

Photos by Jay Terauchi
Kahuna of the Kitchen

Friday, June 24, 2011

It's the Last Fryday in June!

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My dad is visiting me this weekend, actually he's in town to take care of some business. One of our family's favorite places is In-N-Out and I knew he would want one for lunch today.

Had to do the In-N-Out thing today
It's Aloha Fryday!
He's from Hawaii, so it works...

A Hamburger, a Double Double, and French Fries

That's What a Hamburger's All About!

As much as I talk about Fryday...Man cannot live on FRIED alone...

Another one of my dad's favorites...

Pho Bac
Filet Mignon Beef
Pho Huynh

So ends another Fryday, the last one in June 2011.

Aloha Fryday!

Photos by Jay Terauchi
Kahuna of the Kitchen

Thursday, June 23, 2011

It's a Different World

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It's a different world now...I was talking to a former classmate who's daughter graduates from high school this year. We were talking about starting a new chapter after we graduated. I was telling him that when we were in school, it was all about what we knew. Then in our professional lives, it wasn't what you knew, it was who you knew. Today, it's who thinks they know you, thanks to the Internet.

I remember when you could only buy computers from Computerland or Businessland. These retailers only catered to the computer science types and the novices, like me, were out of luck.

Apple Store

Ten years ago, Apple would change the way we shopped for computers, it's a different mindset. Rather than sell computers, they sold the Apple brand.

Exercise: Go to an Apple Store and play with the macs, iPads, iPods, iPhones, and MacBooks. See how long it takes before they ask you to move along?

Apple Store
New York City

In today's world , companies can't rely on what they've done in the past. I always tell my clients, if you continue to do it the same way, expect to get the same results. But in this ever changing world, if you don't figure it out, you'll be left out.

Yes Virginia, it's a different world we live in...

Photos courtesy of Apple
Thanks Apple!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Want to Learn Sushi?

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Sushi Chef Institute
Open House
June 22, 2011

Sushi Chef Institute celebrated the opening of their new location in grand style and I was invited. Andy Matusda, my sensei (teacher) who taught me sushi 11 years ago, welcomed guests to their new home, which happens to be across the street from the American Honda Motor Company headquarters.

Lots of Great Sushi
Inside Out Vegetable Rolls
Spicy Tuna in Soy Paper

Andy Matsuda
People Magazine
Summer 2000

Not just about sushi
somen noodles too

More Sushi...
Tekka Maki (tuna roll)
Spicy Tuna in Soy Paper

What's a Sushi Event without Nigiri Sushi?

Students working the Sushi Bar

Tonight's Nigiri Choices:
Tuna, Salmon, Yellowtail, and Shrimp


They did a good job with the nigiri...

What's a Celebration without Taiko Drums?

1123 Van Ness Avenue
Torrance, CA 90501
(310) 782-8483

Congratulations Andy Matsuda
Sushi Chef Institute!

Best of Luck
in your new home...

Pass the Soy Sauce!

Photos and sushi enjoyed by Jay Terauchi

National Chocolate Eclair Day!

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June 22nd is National Chocolate Eclair Day!

I was at the bakery last week and overheard someone say, "What's an eclair? A donut, right?"

An eclair is an oblong shaped dough filled pastry filled with cream and topped with icing. It's usually filled with pastry cream, custard, or whipped cream. Regardless of what the filling is, they're good...

Chocolate Eclair

Happy National Chocolate Eclair Day!

Photo by Jay Terauchi
Jay Eats Worldwide
© Jay Terauchi

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ramen Monday - June 20

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It was so good, I had to come back to Ramen Yamadaya on Ramen Monday...

My friend Kris was visiting and mentioned that she likes tonkotsu ramen. Our mutual friend Danny suggested Yamadaya, saying they have a good tonkotsu broth. My thinking, I can try the Kakuni Ramen with the slow braised pork belly that I saw 2 weeks ago. The pork was a good size piece and well cooked, all I could think of was BACON...

Kakuni Ramen
Ramen Yamadaya

See you next Monday...

Photo by Jay Terauchi

Saturday, June 18, 2011

June 18th is International Sushi Day

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International Sushi Day!
June 18th

Not really sure what that means, but it's on the #foodcalendar...

Although sushi originated in China in the 3rd Century as a way to preserve fish, the sushi we know today is from Japan. Here's the funny thing, the California Roll, which began the sushi revolution around the world, originated in Los Angeles. So, I guess in Japan the California Roll is International and thus today's celebration. Other than that, that's all I got...

Sushi Combo
Sushi Dragon
Sun Valley

I'll celebrate by visiting my friend Tommy at Sushi Dragon. Tommy Kosaka is one of those chefs who visits the fish market every day and selects the very best for his customers. I like Sushi Dragon, it's one of those small neighborhood places that does the old skool way that you don't find anymore. Seems like most places have gone fusion or what I call "confusion" and can't make a decent tempura. Funny how you can find those places around, but not old skool kind of places. It reminds me of an era that no longer exists or at least is a dying breed.

Sushi Bar Bonus
Grilled Suzuki Kama or Collar

Suzuki is a Japanese Seabass which has a mild flavor. The collar (kama) is found behind the grill area and usually served grilled. Most places will serve Yellowtail or Salmon collar grilled and served with ponzu.

Tommy is one of those chefs who find ways to use the entire fish, some call it head to tail consumption. It's a very small neighborhood place that serves great old skool Japanese food AND has the best priced lunch special in town.

Lunch Special

If you stop in, tell Chef Tommy that Chef Jay says Hello!

8069 Vineland Avenue
Sun Valley, CA 91352
(818) 768-4507
Closed Sundays

Pass The Wasabi!

Photos by Jay Terauchi

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

National Lobster Day!

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June 15th is National Lobster Day!

No matter if they're boiled, steamed, grilled, or baked, if you love them, then today is your day to celebrate. Having been up to Maine, love' em with drawn butter and in rolls.

Now that's a lobster...

Lobster Dynamite

Interesting lobster book by Trevor Corson
You should read his sushi book too...

Pass the Butter!

Photos by Jay Terauchi

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Flag Day and Strawberry Shortcake Day

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June 14th is United States Flag Day!

and also

National Strawberry Shortcake Day!

Today commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States. President Woodrow Wilson officially established June 14 as Flag Day. Amazing how I remember trivia from US History class, I better quit while I'm ahead...

Today's snack to celebrate Flag Day
Red, White, and Blue

I have no idea where National Strawberry Shortcake Day originated from? My guess it was a strawberry grower who got together with a baker and voila! Who knows, just enjoy...

Where's My Spoon?

Photo by Jay Terauchi

International Sushi Day!

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June 18th is International Sushi Day! Not sure what that means...

Here in Los Angeles, we have two originals that have been a worldwide sensation for over 20 years. Not many people know this, but the California Roll and Spicy Tuna didn't come from Japan, they're native to the Los Angeles area.

In the late 60's, the California Roll was created in a restaurant in Little Tokyo in Downtown Los Angeles. The sushi chef at Tokyo Kaikan was brilliant! He took ingredients that Americans would eat (crab, avocado, and cucumber), rolled it with the rice on the outside (hiding the black seaweed) and gave it an American name. This my friend is how the sushi boom began...

The Famous California Roll
Created by Tokyo Kaikan
Los Angeles

It would be considered a sin to add ingredients to fresh tuna in Japan. Remember, Japanese food is simple, subtle, and seasonal, and they really don't eat spicy food. Japan is not known for spicy foods, they leave that to China, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, etc.

Spicy Tuna Roll
Created by Iroha Sushi
Studio City, California

So, on International Sushi Day, our favorites aren't considered traditional in Japan, but I guess it would be "International". Regardless, just go out and enjoy...

Pass the Soy Sauce!

Photos by Jay Terauchi
at Sushi Dragon, Sun Valley

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Ramen Monday - June 13th

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Ramen Monday!

Last week, I was in the South Bay and we had lunch at Ramen Yamadaya (Ramen Monday - June 6th). It was a good place and I'll probably go back there. Ramen Yamadaya's speciality is Tonkotsu based ramen.

Tonkotsu Moyashi Ramen
Pork based broth with Bean Sprouts

Tonkotsu is a rich pork bone broth that has a cloudy white broth. By simmering the pork bones for hours, pulls out flavor and collagen, giving it the rich and creamy look. I probably shouldn't say this, but many restaurants add amounts of cream or butter to enhance the broth.

Have to admit, Ramen Yamadaya has a better Tonkotsu broth than what I had today. As I was passing another ramen place, I thought to give it a shot.

Karaage Chicken
Japanese Fried Chicken
This was disappointing, they didn't cut the chicken correctly
Not even worth mentioning this place

Happy Ramen Monday!

Photos by Jay Terauchi

Friday, June 10, 2011

Today is FRYDAY! - June 10th

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Yes, today is FRYDAY!

In my opinion, there is one fried food that is very hard to find these days. Tempura is a dying art and not many places know how to do it the old skool way. When I was growing up, restaurants did a great job, nice and crispy. So, I'm happy when I find that does it crispy and not greasy.

Tempura Udon
Sanuki No Sato

Sanuki No Sato is a place that does a good job with tempura, the udon ain't bad either. On this day, I celebrated with a bowl of udon.

Beef Udon
Shin-Sen-Gumi's Tonsyo Udon

Yesterday's lunch at Pacific Square's Marukai Market...

Tempura secret, using very cold water and potato starch. Do not over mix it and keep it cold...

Pass the Togarashi!

Photos by Jay Terauchi

Monday, June 6, 2011

Ramen Monday - June 6th

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Ramen Monday continues...
If you've read my previous ramen post

Had a meeting in the South Bay today and we ended up at Ramen Yamadaya, so I celebrated Ramen Monday.

The specialty here is a Tonkotsu broth, a rich flavored pork broth, which they extract the flavor out of the pork bones. All of their ramen offerings stem from this pork broth, with a choice of thin or thick noodles.

Tonkotsu Ramen

For Tonkotsu, I usually like Shin Sen Gumi's Hakata style. I have to admit that I did enjoy this ramen, I think it was the noodles. Having a choice of noodles was great and were cooked well. This bowl did include an egg, but since I'm not a huge egg fan, took it out...

I did enjoy it and will be back. Found out they're opening a location in Culver City, will have to check it out.

Happy Ramen Monday!

Ramen Yamadaya
3118 W 182nd Street
Torrance, CA 90501

Photo by Jay Terauchi