Tuesday, 5 May 2009


I've been procrastinating. So many things I could have posted about, but by the time the children are in bed asleep K has downloaded the most recent episode of Hell's Kitchen ('Yes Marco!') and I can't seem to drag myself away from the sofa. But, if I don't get back into the swing of things this blog could well end up simply clogging up cyberland, so...

Today is Kodomo no Hi (Children's Day, but more for boys than girls, and a national holiday), and the countryside is spiked with koinobori, proudly swimming in the breeze:

It also happens to be Golden Week, and the nation is going quite mad (really) in their desperation to do something 'special' over the break. Like this:

This was taken at 10am this morning, it's a drive-by shot and I can assure you that the queue went waaay back. Oooh, such excitement in our sleepy little town, go on, have a guess... Here's a clue:

And the answer is... noodles! Udon, to be precise. This grubby little shop (yes, the grey building at the back is a restaurant) was featured on TV about 10 years ago for having the best Sanuki udon in the country. Will have to check it out for myself after the crowds have subsided, I didn't believe it before as I'd previously driven past and seen the owner flat on his back asleep on a table... at lunchtime!

We were treated to a fabulous lunch over in Niihama with extended family - SIL's DH's father is so generous and decided to splurge his government handout money on a slap-up meal for us all! We went to a Japanese-style restaurant, the food was simply stunning. Lots of small dishes so was a little shy to snap each one as they came, but just to give you an idea here's the Okosama set (kid's meal):

W was slightly freaked out by the enormous prawn being served complete with it's head, but M (being only 19 months old) was none the wiser and happily munched her way through it. K also helped out by eating the ikura (some kind of roe, maybe salmon) that was sprinkled over the rice balls. The boys both ate nearly everything. Was very happy that neither of them kicked up a scene with cries of 'I don't like it' - they've come a long way!

And this was my favourite dish, simmered aubergine sandwiched together with light tofu:

The thinly sliced and fried renkon (lotus root) was wonderful, must make some at home!


  1. Wow. What an impressive lunch!

    You can really get the feel of a place by the kid's meal I think and that one is pretty amazing.

    I love Sanuki udon and will have to get the name of that place from you... ;P

    Hope you had a good boy's day. We went to the 100 yen rental day at the video store and there was a similar queue- we Naganoites really know how to live it up, hey?

  2. interesting dishes. Oh wish to try the lotus root. Looks so funny and strange :)

  3. Wow, what a fantastic children's lunch! I'd happily eat that too. Isn't it nice when they just eat something without rejecting it!

    That noodle queue is so funny and so Japan isn't it :)

  4. I think we may have seen your shop on TV... 3 hours in a line outside in the sun to eat a bowl of noodles - only in Japan! We prefered to stay home in the quiet...
    I love Japanese children's meals - so much better than the fish and chips or chicken nuggets and chips that they offer in New Zealand.

  5. Hey darling.. so sorry for the late reply = ) We just got back, and trying to unwind a bit, catch up.

    I have my eye on the Rekon-- which is my favorite, and fried.. oh yum. That is a LONG line.

  6. you grew up just outside Macc? I lived in Gawsworth until I was 14mths then we moved to Biddulph Moor - if you have heard of the moor I will be well impressed :o)

  7. Prestbury eh? much posher than me then LOL.

  8. Hey there A, I am getting nervous about this weeks challenge.. yikes!!