Taking a little inventory

Just like it's a good idea to take inventory of your pantry sometimes, I find it useful to take a look back at my sites occasionally and take stock of what I'm doing.


Since Just Hungry is more than 4 years old now, there are hundreds of back entries and more than 200 recipes. I refer back a lot to them in newer entries, both here and on Just Bento.

It's become clear to me that most people come here for the Japanese recipes. I'll continue to post non-Japanese recipes I like, because hey it's my site, but I am going to concentrate most of my efforts on explaining both traditional and newer Japanese home recipes (yohshoku and chuuka, as well as washoku) for an English speaking audience.

Now, when I look back at some of my older entries, it's pretty clear that some of them, especially those that were posted in the early days, aren't that good. They have no photos, or really bad photos, or inadequate explanations. So I'll be totally redoing some of them with clearer pictures and instructions.

Some of the candidates for revised versions include:

Should be here but isn't

There are also a number of recipes that are requested over and over. I can't do every single recipe that you've ever had in Japan or a Japanese restaurant, obviously! But here are some favorites that have never appeared here, and probably will so eventually.

  • Japanese style hamburger steak. I make this a lot at home, and don't know why I've never posted it here. I guess it's too familiar or something. I will post it...soon.
  • Okonomiyaki. There is a sort of a deviant <a href="http://www.justhungry.com/2006/02/masterchef_day__2.html'>vegetarian okonomiyaki here but not a proper version. That too should appear....soon. (Related: takoyaki. Here I am hampered by the fact that I do not own a takoyaki plate. It's too single-purpose for me.)
  • Tempura. OMG why is there no tempura here?? Well...mainly because it's deep-fried, and I don't do much deep-frying these days. (The Just Hungry Test Kitchen production has to be consumed by the staff, not thrown away.) I may divide the subject of tempura into several spread out entries.
  • Korokke. See tempura re: deep-fried.
  • Nishime, or traditional stews. I'm partly hampered by the fact that not all traditioinal nishime ingredients are available to me (especially burdock).
  • I'd also like to explore and present a lot more vegetarian and vegan Japanese dishes. Japanese cooking in itself is not really vegetarian, but I think there are a lot of vegetarian-friendly dishes.

Are there any other Japanese recipes that you think should be here, or you want to see? I can't promise to satisfy everyone, but I'm all ears.

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I know I definitely come here for the japanese recipes (though the other stuff is great too) so I'm excited for what's next! Especially as a vegetarian who is trying to become more adept at japanese cooking. Good luck!

they all sound so good~~ i've tried your teriyaki recipe (i found it easily enough, lol), and it was really yummy!
i'd love to see more veggie recipes! i'm trying really hard to eat healthier and stray away from meat (long story), lately.
as always, love your sites!

When we were in Japan a few years ago, lunch was almost always noodles from a little restaurant on whatever street we were on. I would get soba, and my husband would get udon, and they were always delicious. Is there a basic recipe that would be suitable for making this delicious meal at home? If you have one, I'd love to try it.

Hi Rebecca. I have some noodle recipes already here -

Is there any specific kind of noodle dish you were looking for that's not there yet?

I'll try the udon and soba recipes, I did miss those.

I really don't know exactly what kind of noodle dish I'm looking for. In Kyoto we found a restaurant with a bowl of noodles in the front window with all their other dishes, and they had good noodles. (The old woman behind the cash register wouldn't even try talking to us - she escorted us back outside and had us point at what we wanted. :) Another time, we were at a temple, and they served noodles - only noodles - at a restaurant beside the grounds. And another time, we asked a Japanese-speaker to take us to a place that served noodles and he took us to a little lunch counter that served them.

They were all similar, all delicious, and I'd love to have a very basic recipe to get that noodle-ly goodness in my own kitchen.

Hi Maki,

Just want to say I appreciate very much your constant care taken to cater for the needs of your readers. Surely that is a big factor that explains for your wide readership. I enjoy your blog a lot and look forward to reading those re-done entries!

Perhaps you have already covered this but I'd love to hear about japanese breakfasts -- both recipes and traditions.

Also, pickles. We had different pickles with breakfast and dinner, and all of them were delicious.

Wow four years! I love both your sites and have learned so much about Japanese culture through the cuisine and your posts. Please keep them coming! I've been reading from my Google Reader and always look forward to your next post! I shall keep my eye out for the upcoming tamago recipe, which is next on my to-try cooking list. -_-

...but do you think it'd be possible for you to put up a recipe for sukiyaki? A friend of mine asked for it once, and I did my best, but without a proper recipe to follow (a mixture of hearsay and what I could find out from Google in about twenty minutes) I'm afraid the result was more just stir-fry with a nice sauce.

Also, I know you've covered this a little bit already, but do you have any tips on cooking healthily (ingredients-wise and equipment-wise) on a student budget? I'll be going to university in two years' time, and I'd like to be able to take my eating habits with me!

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I've been a fan of this site for about a year now - thanks a lot for it, and keep up the good work =)

As a person who was not vegetarian while living in Japan, but it now, I would greatly appreciate more vegetarian recipes. I know Japanese cooking isn't really so veg friendly, but maybe with a few substitutions... Along these lines, I would love an experiment with vegetarian gyoza and perhaps ideas for a veg ramen broth if you ever feel up to the challenge.

Hi Maki, have you ever made tofu katsu? I used to order tofu katsu curry at Curry House...until they took it off the menu. I'm not vegetarian but I just love tofu. I've tried using House brand tofu burger mix, but it's nothing like the thick katsu crust. I thought I should ask since people are looking for more vegetarian recipes, though katsu is fried so it won't be under the "healthy" list. Thank you!

It's not the same I know but you may want to give these a try.

Wow these look delicious! I'll definitely give them a try. Seems easier to make than katsu too. Thanks, Maki!

Please consider a post on Katsudon. Now, it's been my personal favorite since my brain allows memory. My mother learned the recipe many years ago in Japan, which is extremely delicious, and frankly follows the ingredients to a T, yet it is still different from what I've had at a couple of my favorite places to BUY Katsudon.
When I buy it, from only a couple of places that meet my standard, it seems to have almost a secret ingredient that makes the onions taste more onion-y, which in turn onions up the egg portion even more, and there's a flavoring that seems to go beyond the mirin and dashi that makes it taste sweet without being sugary, and more Japanese. The actual pork seems to have this Japanese flavor as well. I don't know if there's less soy sauce either, because it doesn't have the sharp flavor of soy sauce, but it's still well seasoned. I usually use Kikkoman low-sodium, or regular and even sometimes Yamasa.
Any ideas?

Also, a good recipe for Yakisoba could be nice.

I also come here for the Japanese recipes. So far, I've had the most success with the ganmodoki. I would be interested to see your update on nikujaga. The time I tried it, I got inattentive and turned it into hash browns.

I'm curious about Japanese style hamburger steak. Is it like Salisbury steak?

yakisoba/yakisoba sauce.. I still have yet to be successful in that, haha.. and like others requested, vegetable recipes, though from what I've seen most vegetable recipes are simmered in some sort of broth or mirin/sake mixture, or baked with.. mayonnaise?! I am of the opinion that Japanese people might love mayonnaise as much as they love wieners, no offense ^^ Oh, the other thing I've been curious about is beef steak recipes. I always see what appears to be thinly sliced steak (of some sort) in bento and wonder how it is flavored, but the only thing that ever comes to mind is teriyaki?...

I love sukiyaki - I'd love to see a recipe for it here on just hungry ^^

My husband just informed me that one of his favorite dishes as a child was rice with tuna cooked in it. So, I called Obaachan and she said it was just rice with a well drained can of tuna cooked with it, with peas and carrots also if desired. Tonight I tried my own version, using shelled edamame instead of peas, mushrooms, green beans, gobo, and carrot (to make it more nutritious). DH liked it, but said he thought I should have cooked it with shoyu in it, rather than adding it at the table.

I would like more one pot recipes like tuna rice! Thank you!

I think your husband is actually talking about takikomi gohan, where various things are cooked with the rice. I only have two recipes (and they are variations on the same thing) here for takikomi gohan but you could give them a try maybe - both use mushrooms.

Mushroom rice with chicken

Vegan mushroom rice

Please tell me where I might find good, authentic recipes for Korokke and Katsudon!!