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Friday, July 30, 2010

japanese delights



 
Hi bento friends! A highlight of my recent birthday celebration was an indulgent visit to Kushi, a recently opened Japanese restaurant that has received rave reviews for its ultra-fresh fish and savory, authentic Izakaya (pub-style) Japanese dishes.Our two-plus hour feast at Kushi was memorable! Here are some images from our epic meal.

Super-fresh and delicate uni (this was my first time trying this exquisite sea treat):
.
 Lovely grilled quail (photo by Jamison):
 Mixed grill with soy-butter glazed corn, bacon-wrapped asparagus, stuffed spicy peppers, sauce, whole grilled green peppers:
 
 Crisp-tender duck:
 
Wood-grilled eggplant...amazing! (photo by Jamison)
 A beautiful chawanmushi custard with edamame, wild shrimp, mushrooms:
 
Super-fatty tuna, yellowtail, mackrel sashimi:


 
 Later that day we visited Hana Market, a friendly and very tidy Japanese grocery in the U Street neighborhood with a great selection of Japanese items on its carefully organized shelves, from soba to mizuna, miso to pickles, locally grown Japanese produce and more...
 
 
 
Today's bento is a summery selection of Japanese tastes I love, with an enjoyable selection of little dishes nestled in the shokado box...
Green tea soba with a topping of farmer's market tomato and peppers, garlic, spicy saury, snow pea tops and ohba:
Calamari and seaweed salad with bitter melon, handmade food pick with blue bead accent:
Saturn peach from the farmer's market:
Strawberry mochi, raspberry on top:
In keeping with the soothing blue theme, a favorite Nepalese Buddha from the Sackler-Freer Gallery of Asian Art, which I visited on Tuesday:
A golden butterfly, Friday afternoon:
Happy weekend!

18 comments:

Sonoma Bento said...

Jenn, such great pictures! The quail looks like it was amazing. I shouldn't read this right before dinner. Now I am starving! How did you make that calamari so green? It's gorgeous!

bentobird said...

Thanks SB! Always a pleasure to read your comments! The green is from the bitter melon, I think :)

Lia Chen said...

Love bitter melon since I was a kid, strange huh? Because my kids will always refuse to eat it. Beautiful bento with those small dishes, just love it! You choose a great place to celebrate your birthday! Foods are all look so yummy. Happy birthday ... All the best for you and GBU Jenn :)

Kaimono888 said...

Excellent photos! Especially the close-up mochi photo ~ it's going to pop into my mouth haha ^0^
I like that sushi clock on the wall too. Is it for sale :) Well, Those dishes sure taste great! Envious ^.~

お誕生日おめでとうございます Bentobird!
May you bless with lots of love & happiness ^.~

bentobird said...

Hi Lia! I'm getting used to bitter melon--hubby adores it! Thanks so much for your visit, love "seeing" you here :D

bentobird said...

Hi there Kaimono :) Here, I have one more mochi left, its all yours! Loved the Japanese feast from your recent post...

Thank you for your lovely b-day wishes and culinary friendship!

Lyndsey said...

Jenn the bento is stunning! I love love the blue, and the bright green and the handmade pick! I can't stop looking at it. I would love to frame it and hang it on my wall! :D

I found I can get bitter melon at a local market near me. I was waiting to find out what to do with it before I bought some. The Japanese feast looks awesome, sounds like you had a wonderful birthday! You deserved it!

bentobird said...

Hi Lyndsey! Aw, such nice comments, thank you! Given my obsession with food picks, I've been thinking about how to hand-craft them! Came across this pretty blue bead at a shop called Bedazzled in D.C. and it pretty much inspired the colors of this bento :)

Have a great Saturday! We are going to check out an Asian Festival happening nearby in a few minutes...fingers crossed for bento stuffs there!

tofugirl said...

I love the "question? Ask the manager!" sign in the store--so cute! Such a happy post :D Send some bitter melon this way please! (And that last mochi..hehe.) And of course, happy birthday :D

bentobird said...

Hi Carol! So cute indeed! I wanted to take this whole adorable shop home with me (wait--we almost did, haha)! Interested in trying more dishes with bitter melon. Thanks for your lovely visit and b-day wishes :D

Kuusou said...

The food from the restaurant looks so delicious! I really liked your themed bento and the different food you chose to put into it. :)

tofugirl said...

I have a couple of good bitter melon recipes if you're interested--let me know :)

bentobird said...

Hi Kuusou, thanks for your visit and sweet comments!

bentobird said...

Hi Carol, cool! I'd love to learn how you prepare this veggie :)

megan said...

that meal does indeed look like it was epic!! hope you had just the most fabulous time, birthday girl, you surely deserve it!

lovely bento, so sensitive to details as usual... loving the cloisonne bead.

bentobird said...

hi megan! thanks so much--it was really a weekend of foodie adventure and quite fun! Your super-nice and observant comments are always a treat to read...hope your week is off to a super start!

Gnoe said...

Aw, it was your birthday?! Wishing you lots of love & luck! Hope the Asian fest was as good as your trip to Kushi? (Could it be?)

Awesome bento, you're doing it on purpose aren't you? Showing off those lovely dishes (you know I like 'em!) and a gorgeous food pick to go with it. *Sigh* (I seem to sigh a lot today ;)

bentobird said...

Hi Gnoe! Many thanks! Well, Kushi was the kind of place/meal you dream about until you can go back, and was part of a really fun
b-day weekend!
Glad you liked this one--I've got to use some of the little dishes I was buying like crazy on my last NYC visit in bentos, tee hee!