Community Kitchen

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Sunday August 14

3:00 PM  –  7:00 PM

Community Kitchen: Yoshoku Cuisine Night

Sunday, August 14, 2022
3:00pm - 7:00pm
Location: the Center's Issei Memorial Hall
$20 Center Members, $25 General Public
Register by Friday, August 12, 2022

Join us in our Fall edition Community Kitchen event "Yoshoku Cuisine Night!" Community Kitchen is organized by volunteers to bring members of our community together to learn how to cook Japanese and Japanese American family recipes and to share a multi-generational communal dinner. Adapting our Baachan's Kitchen program, started in 2016, Community Kitchen is open to all who want to enjoy and share Japanese home-style cooking while connecting with the community.

Each dinner consists of a menu determined in advance by the Community Kitchen volunteer committee, who then instruct and assist attendees in preparing the dishes on the menu. Participants of all ages and backgrounds are welcome! Just be ready to help in preparation, cooking, and cleanup, but most of all, to have a great time!

It's said that the best way to bring people together is over food, but how about bringing foods together through people? This quarter's Community Kitchen will focus on "Yoshoku," or Western-style Japanese cuisine. Some of the most popular Japanese dishes that we know and love—curry rice, omurice, hamburg steak, tonkatsu, etc.— came together through exchange encounters of different people, culture, and cuisine!


Our August Community Kitchen Menu will be as follows:

- Vegetable Curry Rice
- Hamburg Steak (beef & chicken options)
- Korokke
- Spinach & Asparagus Gommae Salad
- Harusame Salad
- Strawberry Sando

Curry Rice
Curry was originally introduced to Japan by the British Royal Navy at the end of the 19th century during a time where soldiers of the Imperial Japanese Navy were suffering from Beriberi, a disease caused by a severe lack of Vitamin B. Mixing wheat into the curry fulfilled a nutritional need as well as sparked the next cuisine trend beyond the navy.

At around the same time, American professor William Clark of the Sapporo Agricultural College, introduced the implementation of vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots, and onions into curry, as a way to bulk up the dish for students during a rice shortage.

Hamburg Steak
An oval shaped patty made with ground beef, panko breadcrumbs, onions, and egg, Hamburg steak is the Japanese take on the traditional beef hamburger. No need for bread, pickles, or condiments of the conventional sort, hamburg steak can be eaten as is, or with many fun sides and toppings, including ponzu, demi-glace sauce, melted cheese, and fried egg.

Born from the French croquette, Korokke is a delicious mixture of potato, meat, and vegetables, deep-fried to a golden crisp. A popular Japanese snack, you can find korokke at convenience stores, super markets, and even make them yourself at home!

Gommae Salad
The word "gommae" in Japanese directly translates to "sesame seed" (goma) and "to toss" (ae). The sesame seed sauce is made by first, toasting the sesame seeds in a pan, crushing them in a suribachi (Japanese mortar and pestle), then adding mirin (rice wine), menmi (Japanese soup base), and sugar to taste. Traditionally, gommae salad is made with spinach, also known as horenso gommae (spinach sesame salad), but in homes today, many people swap out the spinach with various vegetables!

Harusame Salad
Harusame salad, also known as "Japanese glass noodle salad," is a light and refreshing dish made up of chewy noodles, crisp vegetables, ham, and sesame seeds, all tossed in a citric ponzu dressing. Directly translated, harusame translates to "spring" and "rain," as the cooked glass noodles emulate spring showers in Japan.

Strawberry Sando
Extremely popular in most cafes, department stores, and convenience stores, Fruit Sandos are a Japanese dessert made up of fresh-cut fruit set in whipped cream, cushioned between two fluffy slices of Japanese milk bread. Airy and refreshing, these sandwiches make the perfect dessert for any occasion.