July 25, 2011

Japanese Recipe Booklet

Houston doesn't have much of a Chinatown compared to New York or San Francisco, but I'm grateful for what's there. I was recently killing time in the area while waiting for the Japanese dollar store to open--for some reason they don't open for business until 11 a.m. I became addicted to the Ichiban Kan and Daiso while in San Francisco so I was thrilled when this store opened in Houston even if most everything here is $2 instead of $1.

It was way too early for lunch so I settled on walking around the Golden Foods supermarket while waiting. I was surprised to find this little pamphlet, Let's Cook with HonDashi (Ajinomoto, not dated, 12 pp.) hanging off the shelf in the soup aisle. I don't usually notice much advertising in these places.

Basically, this stuff is an instant version of the bonito fish stock that is used in Japanese cuisine. Since the extent of my Japanese cooking consists of adding fresh vegetables to packages of Myojo Udon Noodles, I didn't need any of the fish stock. I did however, avail myself of the booklet, just in case someday I wished to steer my culinary skills in that direction.

The front of the booklet states that the product is in a "New Package!" I imagine the pamphlet was created specifically for the promotion of the new packaging.

Two pages are devoted to selecting and storing fresh vegetables. In this case those fresh vegetables include only mushrooms and onions.

The publication contains four recipes: Shimeji and Bean Sprout Miso Soup, Egg Fried Rice, Royal Court Rice Cake and Hondashi Salad. Each recipe is shown with a color photo of the finished dish. The instructions are given in both Japanese and English.

The last page states: "Hondashi - bonito stock is great for soups, stir-fried, steamed, simmered and many other dishes."

I love to find little advertising cookbook surprises like this.