Friday, 3 July 2009

Going green

Not in the eco sense by, by any stretch of the imagination. For some reason I just particularly like green at the moment. So, what do you reckon this is then? A clue... this is Japan...

Um, no, not green tea. It is in fact...

Pepsi! The Japanese certainly love to surprise us with new flavours each season, last year it was cucumber (wasn't here to try that one) which I imagine would be very refreshing. This years it is shiso. None the wiser? Shiso is a leaf (perilla, same family as mint/basil apparently) often used in cooking here, shredded as a dressing or chopped and mixed with ume. It has a very distinct smell and flavour. Never would have thought it could end up as a Pepsi flavour... and despite it's rather radio-active looking flourescent colour, it is unexpectedly, rather delicious!

Speaking of cucumbers, we were given a whole bag of them by a farming neighbour the other day. Now, I don't exactly hate cucumber, but let's just say that there are plenty of other vegetables I would rather eat (except okra, I really do dislike okra), however I do have a penchant for pickles and read a recipe on Not Quite Nigella's website a couple of weeks ago that I was quite keen to try:

Ooooh, these are goooood... I have enough cucumbers sitting in the fridge to make another batch, these won't hang around for long, especially as I open the jar pretty much every time I open the fridge. Thanks NQN's mum for sharing the recipe with your fab daughter! And if you are wondering, they are an absolute doddle to make. Here's a link to the recipe:

I have no idea what a Lebanese cucumber is, but this worked perfectly well with the smaller-than-home fruit we get here!

Finally, here's a little something to make you smile. M LOVES noodles! It's just as well, given that we live in the heart of Udon Land. And she's definitely mastering the Japanese art of slurping. Keep an eye on that noodle, it disappears fast:


  1. Shiso Pepsi? Wow, that sounds out of this world! :) Gotta love the Japanese lol. Oh yay I'm so glad that you liked the pickles! I do that too, and the har soon disappears (but it's relatively healthy so I'm ok with that).

    That is the cutest video I've seen in a long time! :)

  2. Shiso pepsi! really interesting. I would also like the cucumber one :) Ha that little girl is so cute!

  3. Hi Lorraine,

    You'll have to try some whilst you're here in Japan - it's rather good! Oooh, your pickles are very moorish, I'm so glad your mum shared the recipe! xxx

    Hi Snooky,

    Thank you! Of course, I think she's a cutie, lol xxx

  4. You are mentioning the loves of my fav foodies... shisho, ume dressing... I did not know it was part of the basil family..... I asked hubs to pick it up for me, could not find it at the super when he tells me..." it uses green coloring".... men are such drama kings sometimes.. = )

    I love sour pickles YUM, although I never did any pickling myself.

  5. Hi April Marie,

    hehe, the colour is a little scarey... but hey, any kind of cola is pure junk anyway! There are a LOT of nasty colours here, they don't seem to bother about it as much as we do.

    You OK? You've been very quiet lately...


  6. I vote that you make either cucumber soup or cucumber-yogurt salad! Both are my favourites to make when I get cucumbers from people.

    Pickles....never done them here.

  7. Hi Helen,

    Hmmm, cucumber soup... not sure if that would be my cup of tea, but will definitely do a yoghurt salad - yum! These pickles were really, really easy to make, and I am now additcted to them! xxx

  8. Wow, stunning color. Though I'm not sure I'd want to try it! Cucumbers sound great though :)

  9. Hi Elissa,

    Yes, it does look somewhat toxic, doesn't it? By the way, your Mojito Jelly post was one of the 'green' things I was particularly taken with! xxx

  10. I dearly love shiso-- both green and red. One of my favorite summer drinks is made from boiling red shiso and adding sugar to the resulting pink drink, but I've only seen it in the rural areas. I think I'd like the green shiso Pepsi too, but haven't had the chance to try it yet.

  11. Hi Debbie,

    I saw a recipe for a shiso drink at the end of an NHK programme yesterday! Sounds like something I should have a go at... I never seen it even out here in the back of beyond! xxx