Lunch on the Seaside

A friend and I tried a sweet little restaurant in Uruma today, called Soupcon Seaside Cafe. Like many of the restaurants around here, it was tiny and tucked away, but it had great food and the loveliest ocean view… we enjoyed a delightful stroll on the beach afterwards. It is a definite keeper!

Asian Food Porn 3.0

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Featuring Saturday night dinner with friends at Sushi Zen in Yomitan: the Zen Roll! Most of the rolls I ordered (especially the Typhoon Roll) were decadent and way too large to eat without cutting up or taking bites.

Sushi Zen is Japanese-owned but for American customers only – no Japanese allowed unless they have a membership. Totally odd concept to me… But it was yummy!

Asian Food Porn 2.0

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Two delicious meals from our lunch spot in Kunigami-son, after our excursion to Hiji Falls and Okuma Beach. I don’t actually know what any of this is, but I’m guessing it goes something like this: Rice (or) Noodles + Meat + Veggies. Mix with delicious magical Japanese potion and serve 🙂

Here’s a little Asian food porn for ya: Today’s lunch at Transit Cafe on the Seawall, which was comprised of tuna, avocado, seaweed, rice, a quail egg, sea grapes, and some sort of delicious sauce #yum

Mizu shite kudasai?

So, remember the post I wrote earlier about our first authentic Japanese meal? Scratch that. We experienced it today, in the town of Uruma-shi.

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We found this little spot after we accepted our housing offer, mildly depressed and famished. There was not a hint of English anywhere – not on the signage, the menus, and surely not spoken by the staff. I wish I could tell you the name of it, if only I read kanji. We removed our shoes and sat Indian-style on the bamboo mats, and the waitress brought us a strange beverage that I can only describe as really, really watered down coffee. Parched, I remembered I had downloaded my Babel Fish translator to my iPhone, and I hastily typed out a request for water. I also used it to ask for a meal recommendation, since we were hopeless in understanding the menu, and there were no pictures to guide us (as we had seen in other restaurants in the more Americanized areas of the island.)

The meal and the experience did not disappoint, though I had no idea what to do with the raw egg included on my tray. I REALLY need to learn some Japanese. I hate being that fool American. But seriously, thank goodness for smartphone technology!

Culinary Adventures in the Far East

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Earlier this week, our wonderful sponsors organized a group dinner at Yoshihachi, the area’s landmark sushi establishment. Apparently, Yoshihachi has been frequented by celebrities, athletes, politicians, and high-ranking military officials over the years, so of course we had to pay it a visit. Chuck and I had tried quite a bit of delicious Japanese food already, but this was our first authentic dining experience in many ways – most notably that we removed our shoes and sat on the floor before eating, and paid in cash yen at the door for our meal (no credit cards accepted.)

Our new friends insisted we try the blowfish. Rumor has it that it makes your mouth numb and tingly, and if you’re really lucky, it gives you some trippy dreams. Alas – Chuck and I experienced neither – but I’m still happy that we tried it. What was more interesting was the sea urchin. If there is anything that straight up tastes like the ocean, it’s a sea urchin. Delicious!

Mostly, my focus in trying all this amazing Japanese food is mastering the chopsticks. Chuck was already pretty decent, but I’m proud to say I’m slowly catching up to his expertise and may even surpass it! I’m kidding… I’m nowhere near there… but I am definitely making progress. In a land where you can’t just ask for a fork, you learn to work with what you’ve got!

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