Our furniture finally got delivered (yay!) last week and the first room I began to unpack was the kitchen. James and I had “remodeled” our kitchen cabinets a couple months ago, meaning we covered them in contact paper, and once I put a few things on the counter and got things set up it went from looking like this:
Not only was it nice to be with my beloved kitchen goods again, it was nice to not have to rely on eating out or grabbing food at the base food court for all of my meals. After living out of a suitcase all summer I was really looking forward to being able to cook! I made a few simple meals the first few days (paninis, scrambled eggs) but when I saw that Sunday night we were in for some bad weather, I decided that was a good opportunity to stay in and try some Japanese cooking.
There is a Commissary on base where you can get American dry goods and pantry staples, but it is not the best for meat or produce. Fortunately, there are lots of markets in town, many of them within walking distance of the base gate. I saw a recipe in my Facebook feed for shrimp fried rice, so I decided that would be the meal I would try to make. Now I just needed to go find the needed ingredients at the market.
The grocery stores I have seen here (so far) are very well organized and products are displayed beautifully. You know how you walk into Whole Foods and the produce is usually very appealing looking? Well Japan is like that but even more so. Produce also tends to be very expensive.
This market also has lots of prepared food, which is nice because take-out isn’t very common from restaurants here.
As you would imagine for a port city in Japan, there is obviously a big fish counter. I needed shrimp but there were so many to choose from!
I did have trouble finding some of the ingredients, but lucky for me I had Google translate on my phone and everyone that works there is super friendly, so I was able to find what I wanted.
Finally I had gathered all the things I needed and I checked out.
The recipe I followed went together very quickly and my meal was ready within about 20 minutes. It made enough for leftovers and would have been even better next to some sort of grilled meat.
If you are curious about the recipe I used, I based it on this recipe from Just One Cookbook. I added a few other things that I like, and a bit more seasoning as I went, but it was tasty and I suggest checking out this food blogger if you enjoy Asian cooking.