Japanese-Scotch egg

It is deep-fried like its Scotch counterpart, but has ground fish rather than meat outer layer, being Japan.  These were on sale today at my local supermarket for the princely sum of 90 yen, along with other oden.

Random photos

kobujime

The kobujime from my last fishing trip.  It was delicious as always, and never seems to last more than one day once it is ready.

himono

Then two kinds of dried fish: where the whiting fillets are cured and flavoured with either sake rice wine (above) or dusted with ground, dried nori seaweed (below) and set to dry out on my balcony.  In mid-winter these are done in about 12 hours, the air is so dry here.  I took most of these to my local izakaya where the boss grilled them over charcoal, which always seems to make them taste better.

Although I went out fishing in mid-January, on the day the weather was strange: hazy, humid and feeling like Spring. Amid the unholy murk of the early morning I spotted an old friend: the Kaiwomaru II, a four-masted barque that is used as a training vessel for the maritime university in south Tokyo and to my knowledge the only tall ship permanently based in Tokyo Bay.

Mt. Fuji is usually dusted completely white with snow this time of year and looked very odd with so little white and the haze all around it; the deckhand went to great lengths to point this out to me, and other various bad omens, and we shook our heads and pondered on the sad, degenerate times we live in.

Best New Year’s card yet

Thank you very much Captain Yutaka.  PS: new species added to the list!

Back from Iwate

No fishing for me this time (only work) but lots of fish, including this Satanically delicious triumvirate (ohtoro, akami, chutoro) of Sanriku maguro, to be had at a local kaiten-sushi restaurant.

Iwate remains probably my favourite place to visit in all Japan (of course if you have been reading my blog for a while now you know what happened the last time I travelled to Iwate for a work trip).  By strange coincidence, I was taken to dinner to eat a nice meal of Maezawa-breed wagyu and other things at exactly the same hotel I stayed in on the night of March 11th/12th 2011.  The lobby looked a lot different this time round, including being turned into some kind of chapel (probably for weddings) – in the corner where I slept most of the night there is now a pipe organ.

It was also odd seeing so much other familiar stuff from that day again: the same gift shop at Morioka station where I was standing with the wind-chimes hanging from the ceiling (they gave the first inkling of the earthquake’s strength) and the beam that was bending inwards; the neon sign at the soba restaurant that was smashed, now replaced; the buses lined up outside the station, no longer swinging crazily on their suspension; the taxi company whose car took us to Akita; the professor’s old office and the restaurant we ate our first hot meal in.  I hadn’t been back to Iwate since 2011 but I remember most of it.

Angler’s perquisite

Just a few whiting fillets for the angler’s kitchen…

First fishing trip of 2016

Hope you all have a happy New Year with tight lines and tranquil seas for all!

Bringing out the big guns

Leftovers from my Thai giant Mekong catfish fishing trip…