Category Archives: Perspectives

4th Anniversary!

I started Humble Bean 4 years ago with a personal mission to cook more Japanese food at home. This blog was a place to hold myself accountable and explore a wide variety of recipes while improving my skills as a home cook. I’ve had many failures and disappointments, but I’ve always been encouraged by your […]

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What’s to Come

Next month is Humble Bean’s 4th anniversary! While past anniversaries have gone by without mention, I thought this year we could do something different. I’ve been planning a string of new recipes—one for each weekday—starting Monday, March 4. Hope you stay tuned. An update on recipe booklets: I’m sold out but, because I’ve had several […]

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Freshly Diced

Back in February, I collaborated with Chris from Freshly Diced on a piece that’s featured on their site: a recipe for Goma Ozoni. Ozoni is typically eaten for New Year’s and yes… I know it’s June. Keep it in mind for next year, or make it anyway! It’s a lovely soup—nutty, salty, and punctuated with […]

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Recipe Booklet for Sale!

So much is going on in the world. The earthquake in Japan feels like a distant memory, even though peoples lives haven’t yet returned to normal. Inspired by all the ways people were raising funds for disaster relief (a great group of posts can be seen at Spoon & Tamago), I decided to design a […]

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Food 52

There’s always a contest going on over at Food 52. I submitted my Bacon and Shiso Fried Rice and was surprised it was selected as a finalist! I would love this recipe to end up in the cookbook and shared with others—it’d be great to have a Japanese dish represented—so if you have a moment, […]

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Obon: Nishi Hongwanji

Obon in America is a curious thing. To me, they’re more like natsu matsuri—a summer festival—than a traditional obon. I wonder how obon in America evolved (and continues to evolve) over the years… In Japan, obon is observed from July 13–15, a time when families come together and welcome home the spirits of their ancestors. […]

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Obon: Senshin Buddhist Temple

We kicked off this summer’s obon season at Senshin Buddhist Temple on Saturday. Everyone packed Senshin’s parking lot, moving in synchronized fashion as they danced bon odori. The people who live across the street from (in this South Central neighborhood) were in their front yard, curiously watching the festivities from a distance. This was my […]

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Nattō

When it comes to natto, there are two camps: the lovers and the haters. They say you’re not truly Japanese unless you enjoy eating this stuff, but most Kansai people don’t like it. I grew up with natto because my family strongly believes in its health benefits. My grandmother says it makes your blood sara […]

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Humble Beginnings

I love Japanese food for its simplicity and ability to meticulously compliment the natural flavor of its ingredients. You could say this is a matter of personal taste, but Japan has an undeniably high standard when it comes to food. You don’t need a Michelin guide to tell you—it’s hard to find a bad meal […]

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