Saturday, August 24, 2013

Favorite Foodie Television: Okazu No Cooking (おかずのクッキング)

I didn't know they moved Sara's Secrets off of Food Network and onto the Cooking Channel. Goes to show how long it's been since I've watched, but it was one of my favorite shows! At the end of the day I guess I still just really enjoy those good old fashioned, slower paced. Ones that made you feel you were chilling in someone's kitchen, casually watching them cook and learning practical useful stuff. Food nerd stuff.

Fifth of my favorite foodie television series I'm going over Okazu no Cooking (Official Site & Wiki Page). Fyi, "no" (の) here is the word in Japanese that creates a possessive form, so it translates roughly to "Cooking (all things) of Okazu" maybe. And some may ask what is "Okazu"? Well it's any and all savory side dishes that accompany your rice in Japanese meals (and bentos).

My guess would've been that the rather unflashy program was a national NHK production but turns out it's from TV Asahi. According to Wiki it's also a long standing close to 40-year old show that started back in 1974. There is also a bimonthly recipe text that accompanies which I think I've seen sold at the Sanseido bookstore in Mitsuwa.

I admit I watch many cooking shows simply for entertainment, but Okazu no Cooking is definitely more the type that I'd actually want a pen and pad alongside to scribble down recipes. It airs in Japan on 5:25AM Saturday mornings so it's not for your party going late weekend risers. The program begins without much fanfare and doesn't have a splash/title screen, but that's how I like many of my Ryouri Bangumi. :)

Host is veteran Doi Yoshiharu. Like most cooking personalities in Japan, his official title is "Ryouri Kenkyuuka" (料理研究家), or "Cooking Researcher / Recipe Developer"... I really enjoy his straight forward approach and most meals are made with using everyday household ingredients. Above he slices a Chikuwa for a simple stir-fry. The young female assistant occasionally rotates and plays a fairly passive role that keeps Doi-san company and asks a few basic questions during. The conversation is often humorous though and so I wouldn't go as far to say the interaction is insignificant. Currently is Hisatomi Keiko and she has her own blog for the show as well.

Another favorite part of the program is a segment where a guest chef or other Ryouri Kenkyuuka shares a recipe. Keeps things fresh and interesting. If I remember right my Stuffed (whole) Napa Cabbage cooking post was inspired by one of them.

This episode's was popular celebrity Wa-ryouri chef Kasahara Masahiro from restaurant Sanpi Ryoron. I see him appear a lot as a guest on other cooking shows, but anyway chef Kasahara shares an easy Wa-fu Potato Salad. In the piece he calls it an Otona or "Adult" Potato Salad.

The list went - Potatoes, Shiso, MyogaShio Kombu, White Roasted Sesame Seeds, Rice Vinegar, Sugar, Salt, Mayo and Wasabi.

This looked really good. Love to try it one day.


KirkK said...

You know, I still wish there were more shows like "Cooking Live". That's real cooking not some reality show.Yes, I'm that old.....

Dennis K. said...

Hi Kirk, I'd love to see that show too. None of the out-of-a-second-oven, "and this is what the dish would look like when done..." haha.