Entries Tagged as 'Japanese'

Japanese cloth gift wrapping

Do you know Furoshiki?  Don’t worry, it’s not a swear word but it’s a beautiful eco-friendly Japanese tradition of wrapping gifts in cloth.  It comes from the old Japanese culture of caring for the environment and reducing waste.  Last week I was reminded of this beautiful Japanese cloth wrapping tradition when I was given a cloth wrapped gift by a cousin visiting from India.  She didn’t use a traditional Japanese cloth but instead used an Indian fabric which looked so pretty.  With the gift giving season coming up and since we’ve got a spate of birthdays before then, I thought it was a good time to start thinking gift wrapping and why not try something new and environmentally friendly this year?

Furoshiki wrapping cloths are available to buy in the most beautiful patterned Japanese fabrics.  They can be expensive compared to paper so think of them as part of the gift.  Otherwise you don’t have to restrict yourself to these – my cousin just used some off-cuts of fabric she had lying around the house so you can use practically any fabric that you have.  I’ve also seen gifts wrapped in beautiful tea towels which are very much a part of the gift. Once you get used to fabric wrapping, you can wrap practically anything in these cloths.  The Japanese don’t stop at gifts but also make pouches with handles to carry stuff around or wrap their lunch boxes in these cloths as some of the pictures above show.  I also love them for wrapping a bottle of wine – so much nicer than taking the bottle as is. 

This Japanese cloth wrapping method looks complicated but it’s actually quite straightforward – it’s kind of like origami with cloth but simpler.  In case you want some help, here is a good site showing you lots of different ways to use cloth wraps.  The site goes in to step by step instructions for different methods of cloth wrapping, making it easy to follow.  But for the simplest option, you can also get cloth wrap bags that tie at the top to make them look wrapped like in the third picture.   

Images: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 |

Sesame soba noodles…

January 20, 2014

"sesame soba noodles recipe"

I am a complete foodie.  I love eating and I also enjoy cooking.  But as much as I enjoy cooking, any recipe I attempt has to be fairly simple and not have too many ingredients but it still has to have bags of flavour.   And of late, the recipes have to be family friendly.  I spent over 2 years cooking 2 separate meals a day as Anya is a very fussy kid.  But in recent months I’ve tried to find healthy recipes that all of us can enjoy and I’ve managed to find a fair few so I thought I would start sharing them here.  First I want to share these Japanese inspired sesame soba noodles which are a firm favourite in our home because they are delicious, versatile and very quick and easy to make.  The ingredients are mostly store cupboard things so this is my go to dish when I’ve got nothing planned for dinner or if I’m short of time as you can literally make it in under 10 minutes. 

Continue Reading "Sesame soba noodles…"

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