By Yutaka

Sakura Season

We’ve all seen those amazing photos of blossom taken in Japan. The sakura (cherry blossom) season has just begun over there, but celebrations go beyond a simple stroll through the trees. Many Japanese people organise hanami (flower viewing) parties beneath the trees, with the partying sometimes lasting all day and well into the night. The…

An Entirely Edible Mother’s Day Sushi Bouquet

Here’s a lovely idea from Japanese food specialist www.yutaka.co for kids to make for their mums this Mother’s Day. It’s a beautiful bouquet that’s entirely edible because it’s made from sushi cones – or temaki, to give them their official Japanese name. You can choose to fill them with whatever you fancy – avocado, wasabi,…

Sapporo Snow Festival

One of the most fabulous festivals in Japan each year is the Sapporo Snow Festival. It’s not sponsored by the famous beer of the same name, it’s actually named after the city of Sapporo in which the three festival sites are located.  The festival began in the 50s when a group of students created a…

Aphrodisiac Sushi Heart Pizza –

Makes Perfect Valentine Foreplay, Says Relationship Expert Chilean author Isabel Allende famously said: “Cooking can be like foreplay” and she was spot on, according to UK-based relationship expert and lifestyle coach, Olga Levancuka. Cooking with your long-term partner can be a real turn-on and it can also help two people meeting for the first time…

Chinese New Year

The Chinese celebrate the Year of the Rooster in 2017. Their official new year begins on Saturday 28th January and ends on 15th February 2018. Also called the Spring Festival, because the dates are governed by the Chinese lunisolar calendar, they change every year. We take a look at some of the traditions surrounding the…

Eating Clean In 2017

Let’s face it, losing weight and getting healthier are amongst two of the most popular New Year’s resolutions people make this time of the year. And, after several weeks of overindulging on rich festive foods, your body is probably crying out for a detox. Clean eating has been a buzzword in the world of nutrition…

Festive Baked Tofu Cheesecake with Berries

With a creamy top and buttery biscuit base, who can resist this classic dessert? Our recipe cuts some of the calories and fat without sacrificing flavour by using Yutaka tofu. It’s the perfect addition to your holiday table or for any occasion for that matter. We’ve created a video to help out. Tofu Cheesecake Recipe using a…

Happy Japanese Christmas

Christmas has become increasingly popular in Japan over the last few decades but it’s not a national holiday, which means many businesses and schools remain open on 25th December. When you think about it, it’s quite obvious really – Christmas is a Christian holiday and less than 1% of the Japanese population are Christian. However,…

When Is Wasabi Not Wasabi?

There has been a lot of media coverage given over to the topic of wasabi recently and the question of whether manufacturers are using the real thing or its poor relation, horseradish, in products like sushi. So, what is the difference between wasabi and horseradish and does it really matter? History of Wasabi Wasabi is…

Kawaii food trend in Japan

Wonderful World Of Tiny Food

We love the ever-growing trend of Kawaii (cute) food that has taken the YouTube and social media world by storm. There are people who make tiny, tempting meals from modelling clay, others who cook little meals on miniature stoves and then there’s artist Chikoto Kawkaami, who makes cookies that look like tempting dishes of tiny…

Vegan Tofu Egg Nog From Yutaka

Egg Nog is the essence of Christmas captured in a single glass. The only problem is that the traditional recipe is a cupful of calories so this vegan version makes a guilt-free alternative. Serve hot or chilled and leave the rum out for the kids or non-imbibing family members. Egg Nog 1 pkt (349g) Yutaka…

Top Ten Tips For Tokyo – Insider Style

Time for a tasty trip to Tokyo and a top ten list of things to do in this amazing city, as recommended by locals. Not only is the food something to shout about – as we at Yutaka are delighted to comfirm – there is also some stunning scenery and great shopping too. Choshunkan Restaurant…

The Say So On Soy

Despite the rise and rise of soya milk, tofu and edamame – all hugely popular in the hipster foodie world – it was soy sauce that was the first, and remains the most popular soy product, to dominate the Western supermarket shelves. Here we take a look at its history and find out what has…

Spooky Sushi Halloween Coffins From Yutaka

Nothing shouts Halloween more than coffin-shaped sushi, now does it! This dastardly design from leading Japanese food company Yutaka is so easy to make that anyone can create their own sushi cemetery with just a few simple ingredients. Spooky Sushi Coffins Ingredients 125g Yutaka Sushi Rice 1½ tbs Yutaka Rice Vinegar 1 tbs sugar ½ tsp…

Fairy Kei – The Pastel Princesses Of Japan

Japanese street fashion might look a little random to the untrained eye, but there are strict rules governing the almost tribal nature of the many different styles out there. What’s more, there are shops that cater to these specific genres too, which boast names like Lolita (with sub-sets such as Gothic, Sailor and even Wa…

Brits Go Mad For Japanese Curry!

National Curry Week takes place from Oct 19th – 16th this year and Japanese Katsu Curry, all the rage in the UK at the moment, looks set to take over from Indian curry as the UK favorite. Katsu curry is actually a take on traditional Japanese curry, originally introduced by the Brits in the nineteenth…

Studio Ghibli – The Disney of Japan

When people talk about Japanese anime and manga, you think of series like Dragon Ball Z and Bleach. However, there is one studio that has repeatedly produced amazing animated films that have kept the world spellbound – its name is Studio Ghibli and its most famous animation, Spirited Away has captured the imagination of children…

All Things Green Tea

Green tea is hugely popular at the moment – not only to drink, but also as a hipster ingredient in all sorts of things. Just type ‘green tea recipes’ into Pinterest and you’ll see what we mean. However, green tea has a centuries long tradition in Japan and its popularity is due in no small…

Frying Tonight – in search of the perfect frying pan

Getting hold of the perfect frying pan is like finding the ideal hairdresser – once you’ve tracked one down, you’re loathe to let them go. So I was most disappointed when my trusty Le Creuset crepe pan started to give up the ghost after 10 years’ service! However, I was not disappointed when I reached…

Talking to Itsu – Asian-inspired Food & Drink in London

The early pioneers of Pret A Manger are the creative force behind itsu. Years of listening to customers persuaded them to build a new type of food place – one that is light, green and good for you. The eat beautiful menu celebrates the amazing flavours of the Far East; high in nutrients yet refreshingly…

Japanese Street Food – The Sweet Stuff

Last week Yutaka’s Gabi Vatchkova, who grew up in Japan, but now works out of the company’s London HQ, introduced us to her top five Japanese savoury street foods. Here she looks at her five favourite street foods for people with a sweet tooth in her bid to convince the world there’s more to Japanese…

Japanese Street Food – The Savoury Stuff

Yutaka’s Gabi Vatchkova grew up in Japan, but now works out of the company’s London HQ. She is keen for people to discover there is so much more to Japanese food than sushi. Here she introduces us to her top five Japanese street foods. Next week, she’ll talk about her five favourite street foods for…

Spicy black pepper shrimp with udon noodles

Prep time    10 mins Cooking time 10 mins Total time 20 mins Spicy Black Pepper Prawn with Udon Noodles – oodles of noodles and oodles of prawns with lots of yummy veggies and a super delish sauce. With thanks to www.jocooks.com Serves: 4   Ingredients 1 250g pack of Yutaka dry udon noodles cooked…

Bristol Student Wins Great British Sushi Search

Yutaka challenged the Great British public to come up with the ultimate UK sushi recipe to celebrate International Sushi Day, which took place on June 18th this year. The winner, 21-year-old Kym-Rose Aki, a student from Bristol, created not one but five British takes on sushi: Kipper Nigiri Bangers & Maki Shepherd Zushi Fox In…

Rice That Is Nice

If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times – perfect sushi requires perfect rice. There’s an art to making sushi rice, but using a rice cooker can help to ensure great results every time. The Yutaka test team had a look at what’s around. Cheap & Effective – Sistema Microwave Rice Steamer…

Yutaka’s Sushi Graduates

Part of the induction process at Yutaka is to ensure employees know how to make sushi. It’s a tough old life, isn’t it? Marie, James and Colin headed off to North London for a crash course in becoming a sushi chef. Marie explains what they learnt. What did you learn? We learnt how to prepare…

The Rise & Rise Of Babymetal – Japan’s hottest export

Not heard of Babymetal? Then where have you been? They’re one of the most famous bands to have come out of Japan in a long time and they’re a pop mogul’s dream. A Fusion of Genres Babymetal are a Japanese metal idol band. Their line-up consists of three teenage girls – Suzuka Nakamoto known as “Su-metal”,…

On A Roll – Sushi Style

International Sushi Day 2016 There are days to celebrate just about everything scattered throughout our calendars, but our favourite is definitely International Sushi Day. What’s more, this year it takes place on Saturday June 18th and we’ll be at the BBC Good Food Show. So come along and learn how to make traditional sushi with…

Big In Japan – Mount Fuji

Mount Fuji is probably the most iconic mountain in the world, instantly recognizable because of its almost perfect symmetry and snow-capped peak. The name Fuji roughly translates as wealth or abundance. It is situated on Honshu Island and at almost 3,800 metres, it is the highest mountain peak in Japan. Mount Fuji is considered to…