The last time Jim and I were in Kyoto was during our honeymoon in February 2015. It was also when I first experienced snow. It fell right as we stepped outside after our cooking class. It’s definitely filed under “core memory” in my brain.
As we had such a wonderful experience then, we wanted to take a Japanese cooking class with the family this time around!
Since we were staying in Osaka, the agency arranged for a van to drive us the whole day for our Kyoto trip. It was about an hour away so we took a nap going there.
The cooking class we attended is called Cooking Sun and I highly recommend it especially for groups!
Dried fish (they looked and felt like wood) makes what’s called DASHI. It’s the base used for many soups including miso! According to our teacher, it unlocks umami — the fifth taste. There’s sweet, salty, bitter, sour, and umami. It’s a kind of brothy, meaty taste.
We started with the tamago or Japanese fried egg. Jim and I learned this when we took our first cooking class so I was pretty confident.
In fact, I was overconfident I kind of burned my egg hehehe. No pictures. Nakakahiya. LEL.
Now for sushiii
And I finally learned how to make chicken teriyaki. It’s just soy sauce, sake, and sugar.
OMG I MADE EVERYTHING IN THIS BENTO BOX. Still very proud of myself hehe.
We had a nice lunch with the family upstairs and our bento boxes were soooo filling. Jim’s dad enjoyed so much that he plans to have a night where he prepares the same dishes at home for us! Maybe this weekend!:)
After the wonderful cooking class, it was time to take a trip around Kyoto! I recommend our driver George and our lovely tour guide Keiko! I am not sure how you can book them but George e-mailed me directions to some places (he’s SO helpful) and I have his e-mail address if you’re interested in hiring a driver for your tour in Osaka/Kyoto!
Our first stop was to check out the famous Golden Pavilion
It was originally the retirement villa of the shogun Yoshimitsu until his death in 1408 when it became a zen temple. It burned down several times in history but the most recent one was in 1950 when a monk burned it down and tried to commit suicide right after. He survived and went to jail for seven years before being released for a diagnosed mental illness. Very interesting, I think there’s a book about it. Aha! A quick Google search says it’s called The Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima. 4 stars on GoodReads.com! Hmmm maybe it should be one of the books I read this year. Anyway, going back: the pavilion standing today was rebuilt in 1955.
Our next stop was the Bamboo Forest: ANG DAMING PHOTOS NG BAMBOOS ANG GANDA KASI OKAY
And then we went to a little shopping district called Kiyomizu-michi. There’s also a temple there but we did not go anymore because Nunki fell asleep in the van and papa Gerry offered to stay with her while the girls looked around for 20 minutes. Our guide Keiko told us about a Ghibli store and I made a beeline for it!
We were all very tired and it was already night time when we got back to Osaka. We decided to just find a restaurant near the hotel for dinner. Osaka is very different from Tokyo in that it’s more difficult to find a place to eat if you’re not from there. Once again, it was hard to find a place for 7 people and we ended up at a Korean barbecue place. They had no English menu and no English speaking staff so I tried my Google Translate app. The funny thing is that the waitress couldn’t understand what I was showing her and then I realized she was Japanese and I was translating Korean phrases!! Haha! Once we figured it out, we just typed in BEEF, CHICKEN, BEER. Hahaha! The food was great.
A few more Japan Holiday blogs to go! Hope you’re having a great 2nd week of the year!!!