Shokugeki no Souma and Mashed Potato Bacon Bombs

It was only last fall that draggle introduced me to this manga, and though I loved the concept and cooking, I was shocked at its bawdy display of eating. I quickly overcame that initial horror and came to thoroughly love Shokugeki no Souma. Imagine my delight when I found out that it would be soon adapted to anime! I was worried that the tone of the manga wouldn’t translate over to the anime, but for the past two weeks, those fears have remained unfounded. There are plenty of meat juices and peanut buttery tentacles to go around for all the diners!

The first episode of the anime, “An Endless Wasteland,” features Souma’s potato roast, a twist on a pork roast featuring mashed potatoes and mushrooms wrapped by crispy bacon and soaked through with meat juices and a red wine sauce. While the dish looks heavenly, I wasn’t too keen on an entire meal of what I would usually prefer as a side dish. I hunted around online for ideas and stumbled across Savory Style’s Mashed Potato Bacon Bombs and decided to try their snacks out, as well as add in some garlic and onions to tie in to Souma’s version. Go ahead and give the below a try and let me know what you think! And if you attempt a version truer to Souma’s, I’d love to see your results of that as well.

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Winter 2015 Season Wrap

Winter is over and spring is officially here! At least, that’s the case in the Northwest–sorry if you’ve still got snow ;) I am shocked at the number of shows that finished up this season, both one and two cours. My anime list was temporarily tiny before I started picking up new anime at the start of this month.

I apologize for the delay in this post; Sakura-con always seems to fall smack on the weekend between shows ending and beginning. iDOLM@S also hung around a week later than everything else and I wanted to include it in the season wrap. The 22 shows I finished up (and in the order discussed) are:

  • Bonjour Koiaji Patisserie
  • Akatsuki no Yona
  • Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso
  • Dog Days”
  • Koufuku Grafitti
  • Death Parade
  • Log Horizon 2nd Season
  • Daiya no Ace
  • Shirobako
  • Yowamushi Pedal: Grande Road
  • Rolling☆Girls
  • Tokyo Ghoul √A
  • Sanzoku no Musume Ronya
  • Aldnoah.Zero 2nd Season
  • Kamisama Hajimemashita◎
  • Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu
  • Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu LOVE!
  • Yoru no Yatterman
  • Durarara!! x 2 Shou
  • The iDOLM@STER Cinderella Girls
  • Garo: Honoo no Kokuin
  • Absolute Duo
  • Junketsu no Maria

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Traveling to Flonyard with Apple Blackberry Flaugnarde

“I want to make this a better world for people to live in.” – Clarifier, Former Ruler of Pastillage

The present Flonyard of Dog Days is a land of mostly peace, where neighboring nations are more like family and “wars” are excuses for friendly battles. The Flonyard of the past, however, was a place of darkness. Demons overran the land and prevented communication between the kingdoms. It was in this time period that Couvert’s ancestor, Clarifier, summoned the Legendary Hero, Adelaide. It was “Fi’s” wish to eradicate the demons and bring peace to Flonyard. She dreamt of a world where everyone could make safe travel and trade. Fi and Adel’s journey started out rocky, but through dedication and with good friends they laid the groundwork for the Flonyard in which Cinque finds himself at the start.

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Koufuku Graffiti and Convenience Store Meals

There’s a different type of joy to be had from peeling away plastic wrappers from ready-to-eat foods and savoring the blend of tastes that have been melding for who know how long. The covering falls away, and what is left is a meal that requires nothing of the eater but the act of eating itself–no cooking, little to no cleaning beforehand, no dishes to wash. The luxury is a refreshing change from daily routines as long as you don’t look too closely at the nutrition labels.

A couple weeks ago, the ever-delicious Koufuku Grafitti sent me on a trip to the local Asian grocery store in search of my preferred to-go meals. It’s not often that I step away from slow cooker dinners and sit down restaurants, but there are times when nothing else beats the convenience and unique taste of prepared foods. And while my favorites don’t evoke specific memories like Ryou’s, I look fondly upon them as treats I never indulged in until I moved to Seattle back in 2013.

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Rice Cooker Takenoko Gohan and Koufuku Graffiti

Koufuku Graffiti is this season’s scrumdiddlyumptious offering for food anime. Our main girl, Machiko Ryou, lives alone with the memories of her grandmother’s meals and their time together. Her lessons learned in the kitchen and love for the company of others compels her to continually cook favorites and experiment with new dishes to eat together with her friends.

Episode three, titled “Jinwari, Bariri,” features takenoko gohan. Requested by Ryou’s cousin, Kirin, the bamboo shoot rice dish has a comforting, yet refreshing, taste and texture reminiscent of spring. Along with their friend, they savor the freshly cooked rice along with a side of clear, hot soup. The result is healthy fullness that leaves the mouth and stomach satisfied.

There are many variations to making takenoko gohan, and I went with one of the easiest methods using my rice cooker. Follow along and let me know how yours turns out!

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Winter 2015 Set Menu

We’re about three weeks into the 2015 winter season, and I’m still undecided on quite a few shows. I thought I wouldn’t be adding in too many this time around since the line-up didn’t impress me at a glance, but I’ve got a surprising amount clinging on to my continuations from the fall. I’ve broken my shows into three categories: watching, undecided, and ongoing. Fuller thoughts on new shows are given first, with quick summaries of my feelings on the shows still airing from previous seasons following at the end. Let me know what you think is missing from my list (any why) and I’ll give it a try!

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Oishi Fun Review – Monthly Japanese Snack Box

I recently received a complimentary snack box from the Japanese online snack service, Oishi Fun. The box arrived about a month after they had first made contact with me, and was packed full of curious treats and candies. I’ve experienced similar services through U.S. companies like NatureBox and JewelMint, but this is my first time trying out an International option.

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Fall 2014 Season Wrap

HAPPY NEW YEAR☆ | gummy bear [pixiv] http://www.pixiv.net/member_illust.php?mode=medium&illust_id=47989204
Happy New Year! I had an awesome little intro written out for this, but being as WordPress screwed me over in my attempt to publish and erased everything from my most recent revision, we’re going to be short and sweet and jump straight into my thoughts into the fast fall season. Hang on for the good, the bad, and the downright ugly!

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On the 1st Day of Anime — A Hunt Worth Undertaking

Three years, 148 episodes, and seven arcs have given us a show that leaps far and beyond the story that was introduced in that first episode, an adventure spurred by a young boy’s wish to simply meet his father. This is not only a story about a boy growing up, but about life in general, the darkness and difficulties in it, and what exactly makes it worth living. We laugh when Gon smiles, grimace when he clenches his fists, cheer when he succeeds, and cry out with his frustration.  Hunter x Hunter has burned itself into my heart with stunning force and deserves my final slot for the year of 2014.

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On the 2nd Day of Anime — A Talking Hand and a Prettier Face

Fall was probably one of my least researched seasons of the year, largely due to my busy life schedule and struggle to keep up with the summer shows. I ended up very quickly scanning through what the new season had to offer and choosing a handful, relying later on my friend’s initial reviews and tweets about shows worth watching. Kiseiijuu happened to be one I chose from my first grouping, not because of the art or studio or premise. It was actually KWoo who wanted to try it out. So imagine my surprise when the sci-fi turned out to not only be gripping, but to also have horror elements right up my alley. I was immediately reminded of an old favorite of mine, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, where plant-like aliens invade a town and take over the bodies of its residents without many people noticing until it’s too late. Similarly, Kiseiijuu features spore-like parasites bent on overtaking humans’ brains to survive and consume on Earth. The image of a small, drill-like blob fighting to enter Shinichi’s body through any orifice was terrifying but fascinating. Like a slow motion disaster headed your way, you can’t help but stare and wait for the consequences. The unexpected result of Shinichi’s luck and determination in turn gives us one of the most successful adaptations to anime in 2014.

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