Japanese food history – Tempura, where did it come from?

BBC article here!

It’s a fact that still bewilders me to this day, but somehow amidst all of the glorious fried foods of Japan I have managed to LOSE weight since moving here..

Even though 天麩羅、唐揚げ and other fried goods are quite possibly some of the most delicious foods in the world.

But did you know that tempura isn’t actually an original Japanese recipe?

Nope – it’s from Portugal!

This article was pretty fun and informative about the origins of tempura – take a read and learn a quick introduction into the history of one of Japan’s tastiest side orders.


Music mondays

In my quest to improve my Japanese listening ability, I previously wrote that I was only going to listen to Japanese music on my iPod from then on to see if it would help me learn to pick up more.

I can honestly actually say that coupled with the other things I have been doing (grammar study, intensive vocab and kanji input and generally conversing as much as I can!) – my listening has improved ten-fold! I have recently found that while listening to new music, I can pick up on what they are saying more clearly while listening to familiar songs I can start to understand meanings. So, hurrah for music!

So I’m going to share some of my favourite music, old and new, every Monday. Besides getting me back on to the blog-train, it’ll also push me to keep on seeking out new music which is always good fun.

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The Natural History Museum – from London to Tokyo!


I have such exciting news for Japan from my hometown! The Natural History Museum will be exhibiting specimens in Tokyo from the March 18th – June 11th this year!

The Natural History Museum has always had a special place in my heart throughout my life. I’ve lost count of how many times I have visited there, from school trips, attending with my mother to see exhibitions or taking a sketchbook along to draw the fossils. It’s a tourist destination too with many people from across the world visiting the South Kensington area to see the various museums – all for free! Londoners are certainly lucky for the science and arts culture that is available and it really is something I treasured whilst living there.

However now the museum is apparently shipping out a number of fossils and specimens for people in Japan to see too! This is such exciting news for the number of people who are unable to visit London for various reason. I hope many people will go, whether international tourists or residents of Japan.

Yay, science!!

BBC News article 

Exhibition Website (In English)


Today, I thought I would give a couple of shout outs to some blogs by my friends that I have been enjoying recently.


Macenachan ~ Notebooks and Cookbooks

My dear friend Macena is an avid foodie, a bookworm and is, like me, interested in Japanese culture. Her blog is a charming insight into her life, from exploring her reading lists through to her yearly collection of her Ramadan Diaries – she writes engagingly and it is a fascinating insight into her daily life. Macena is a talented writer, so I thoroughly enjoy reading about her life in her gentle yet humorous tone.


Healthy Fighto! (ヘルシーファイト!)

Maryann, my lovely neighbour and fellow ALT friend here in Japan has started a blog to record her progress in her personal fight to achieve a healthy lifestyle! Maryann has been a great influence upon me this year, encouraging me to join her in jogging and other energetic activities – so I am really excited to see her progress as well as learn a few more hints and tips for healthy eating (because this girl can cook, btw!).

You can also see some of Maryann’s work where she has joined me and Su in our weekly art project, With Two Sugars, Please!


Cat Day!

How on earth did I miss yesterday being “Cat Day” in Japan?

22/2, affectionately known as 猫の日 was chosen because the day is ににに – the closest sound to what a cat makes.. just as adorable as I expected from Japan.

Read about CAT DAY here!

I celebrated without even realising, because I was using my Nekomimi headphones. How did you celebrate?