Tuesday, March 27, 2018

And Happy Birthday to Me... Again!

Happy Birthday to Me 

To be perfectly honest, lately I don't feel too excited about getting one year old. Nevertheless, I feel this strong urge to do something special for my birthday. It's just to be nice to myself and feel as if I can get rewarded once in a while... like on my birthday, at least.
So here's my birthday cake. It's the same old orange cake I've been baking again and again in the past few years. And this time, for topping, I used candied and chopped ponkan orange peels and orange-flavored icing.
Well, that's not all actually ...
See what else I made this time?
I made this white chocolate plate myself. What I did was that I printed out the words reversed and placed plastic wrap over it. Then I traced the characters with melted dark chocolate, using a toothpick, and chilled it in the fridge. Then I poured melted white chocolate over it to have the b-day wish on a white chocolate plate like this!
I know! The plate is laughably too BIG for the cake! :D But it was so much fun to make one, so I might do this often for different occasions.;)

Every year March is an eventful month, and so was it this year, too. Hina Dolls Festival in this historical town in our city was held just like every year.

I took mom to a traditional inn and tasted this lunch-- for-twenty-people-only special deal for the festival.
 See this sushi in the cup? How cute!
And this delicate Japanese sweet was homemade. Wow!

To our relief, this March they had a big catch of Buri (Japanese amberjack) in my hometown. But I didn't make sushi like I did last year...
Instead, I gave this project a try. It was making dried seaweed sheet, using real seaweed fresh from the ocean, then wrapping sushi with it and eating it. This is how to make dried seaweed sheet:
You scrape the seaweed off rock surface,
 and wash it over and over to remove sand. Then you spread it over this kind of small straw mat to sun-dry.
If the weather is nice, it'll be ready in a few days.
It was supposed to taste so good after heating it briefly over a flame like this:
But when my family tried this sushi, we found that the wrapper -- dried seaweed sheet -- was too tough to chew! It was my ignorance that should have been blamed. Later I heard that in March the seaweed was already old and tough, and you had to chop the seaweed finely with a knife before spreading it on the straw mat. Oh well, I'll know better next time. ;)

Another food-related fun was this "cooking in English" lesson by a local English conversation club. There, for the first time, I learned how to make wheat tortilla and guacamole from scratch!
And we enjoyed a big feast like this!
Everything tasted oh soooo good!!

I guess I cannot complain about my food life, at least. :)


Jen said...

Happy Birthday! What an interesting post! Too bad about the seaweed - I had no idea that's how you would even begin to make it.

Have you shared the recipe for the cake previously? It looks fabulous!

obachan said...

Hi Jen,
Thanks for your comment. Yeah, the seaweed attempt was so much fun, after all. :D
I did post the ponkan orange cake recipe long time ago on my old foodblog, but it was in Japanese. :)

littlemancat said...

Happy belated Birthday! Oh that orange cake looks so good! Orange cake was my mother's very favorite. She was an Aires as are you. A really nice post, enjoyed seeing all that food. And the seaweed adventure too.
Treat yourself as much as you wish, you deserve it.
Nice to see a post - looking forward to more?

KirkK said...

A belated Happy Birthday!

obachan said...

Thank you so much for your b-day wish. Now I feel kind of close to your mom. :)
I'll post more often than last year. I promise! :D

Thanks! It's so nice of you to care about me.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday - a little late. Your cake looks lovely.

obachan said...

Thank you, anonymous commenter. I appreciate your kindness. :)

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shootfor stars said...

Hope you keep blogging. I was in Japan for 2 wks. Just Tokyo, Nara and Kyotoa last June. lst time in Asia after all the years living in Canada since I'm from there.

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My blog is: http://cyclewriteblog.wordpress.com

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas Obachan! Hope you are doing well.


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