Cooking Japanese food

	Tako Yaki

The day before we had to leave our host families in Suita, Oosaka, we were invited to cook some of the greatest dishes from Japan in the city hall of Yameda. We made Takoyaki (small flour balls of octopus with a coat of read ginger and vegetables), Yaki Soba (fried vegetables and lovely noodles), Ichigo daifuku (delicious small strawberries with a coat of sweet beans, and on top of that yet another layer of some kind of gummish rice-thing). We also made this international edition of maki rolls, a kind of rolled sushi (maki-Makeru means to roll in Japanese). The inside contains fresh fish and vegetables rolled in rice and seaweed.

The funny thing about making these dishes was that they all were a lot different to us in a lot of ways. I had never seen a Japanese person make maki rolls with boiled vegetables and tuna. It gave me new inspiration because it is very different from the way I learned to make sushi in Denmark.

It was also really great to get the opportunity to make Takoyaki, because it famous in the Kansai area, and a lot of the group members where crazy about them. In my case, it was fun because my host family owned two popular Takoyaki shops, and after this course, I was able to help them in the shop.

My favourite dish was probably the Ichigo daifuku, because it had such a fun texture (it was softer than wine gum, and still tougher) and because it contained my favourite fruit, a yummy red strawberry. The inside red strawberry even measured up with the strawberries from Denmark, which Danes are very proud of.

After my trip home from Japan, I began to make Japanese food the way I was taught by my host families and the course, and everyone really loves it in Denmark. I would never have discovered these dishes without the World Campus Programs, and I will always appreciate that I had the opportunity to learn it in Japan.

(Nina Møller, Denmark)

An Experience that I never forget

2011 August, 6th – 12th: In Toyota, I was hosted by an awesome family, and that was the Michiyamas family. On the first day, my host mother and sister took me to a ‘’KAMISHIBAI” exhibition place. There were a lot of kamishibai’s tools and instructions to let you know how to play “KAMISHIBAI”. “KAMISHIBAI” is a device to tell stories. You use a square box which has doors you can open to insert paper illustrations and pull it out when you are telling the story. I was very lucky to have this experience. I played kamishibai before kids, and they really enjoyed my performance. I felt very happy about that. Because my host mother is a professional teacher of kamishibai, so she taught me a lot of techniques. It makes me know more about kamishibai.

After we experienced kamishibai, we went to the Toyota Municipal Museum of Art. There they had an exhibition of a famous painter from Holland, named Johannes Vermeer. His paintings are very elegant and realistic. We had a wonderful afternoon enjoying and appreciating every painting there.

On 8th August, my host sister took me to Nagashima Spa Land, an amusement park that has the longest roller coaster in Japan. And my host sister and I are both crazy-loving ride on roller coaster! So, we rode every roller coaster as much as possible. There are totally seven roller coasters, we rode not only once but also twice for a tallest roller coaster. It was very exciting for me to have such a great experience in Japan. In Taiwan, we don’t have these kinds of roller coasters. It was really impressive and a lot of fun. We really had a wonderful time there.

(“Umi” Yi-Ting Cheng from Taiwan)