June 22, 2016

MOTOism: Matcha Sesame Tofu Two Ways

by Moto Yamamoto

When I tried to come up with a recipe for the Umami Chef Matcha Challenge*, all the usual recipes were too ordinary (lots of sweets) and I wanted to make something a bit different and creative. I ended up discovering a recipe that can be used for both savory and sweet. Brilliant. When you think […]

March 7, 2016

MOTOism: Karashi Mentaiko Extreme (Spicy Cured Cod Roe)

by Moto Yamamoto

Hi I am back, sorta. I’ve been making a lot of stuff from scratch. I spend half the week in the countryside, with a big-ass kitchen — it’s an ideal setting to be creative/adventurous with my cooking. The other day, I was at H Mart (the very best Korean supermarket with a ton of Japanese items, […]

June 11, 2015

MOTOism: Italian Shumai

by Moto Yamamoto

(Disclaimer: I did NOT see any of the shadows when I was taking these photos. Sorry about this. My pics are usually bad, but these are extra bad…) I love coming up with weird fusions. You will be surprised at how cultural combos work very well, such as the Natto Sandwich, Ramen della Carbonara, Natto […]

May 11, 2015

MOTOism: Natto Brie Dip

by Moto Yamamoto

I’ve made quite a few dishes using natto (fermented soy beans) in the past years — from Natto Moffin to sweet Natto Sandwich. If you like natto, it’s good with everything (almost), but if you hate natto, you wouldn’t understand any of my creations. That’s ok, I proudly HATE cilantro myself and I refuse to eat any […]

April 20, 2015

MOTOism: Sake Ice Cream

by Moto Yamamoto

Since this month commemorates Umami Mart’s Japanese beer and sake shop debut, here is another post on sake-related cooking. Sakekasu (sake lees) is a quintessential Japanese ingredient because of the concept of mottainai (no waste!). Japanese people try not to waste anything. For example, after squeezing soy beans when making tofu, the leftover scraps (called okara) can be […]

April 9, 2015

MOTOism: Baking with Sake

by Moto Yamamoto

Hi, I am back. It’s been quite a while since I last posted. Umami Mart has been crazy for Kayoko and Yoko, and I’ve been creating recipes non-stop and teaching cooking classes which has been occupying most of my time. However, having heard the great news that Umami Mart is selling sake and beer, I couldn’t help […]

May 14, 2014

MOTOism: Homemade Mustard

by Moto Yamamoto

I’ve made many many things from scratch, from macarons and Worcestershire sauce to wedding cakes and plum liqueur. The long process is something I enjoy, and the end result is usually pretty good. However, in terms of cost performance, making things from scratch doesn’t save you much money. Like hand-knit scarves, it actually costs more […]

March 12, 2014

MOTOism: Homemade Miso

by Moto Yamamoto

As you may know, we recently bought a country house in the deep woods of Connecticut. We now own 9 acres of land, and my imagination goes wild with what to do — from building a chicken coop to a greenhouse, to planting yuzu and plum trees — an all Japanese vegetable garden. Unfortunately these […]

December 17, 2013

MOTOism: Living on Deadlines

by Moto Yamamoto

Apologies for my long absence, my life has been a bit chaotic. As you know, I teach cooking classes to Japanese ladies (some gents), and temaki sushi-making class for Americans. The sushi class is pretty consistent since I follow the same routine for each session, but coming up with recipes for the Japanese class occupies […]

September 20, 2013

MOTO x Japanify Mashup: Kombu-Cured Enoki Mushrooms

by Yoko Kumano

Last month, MOTO made a surprise appearance for our one-year anniversary party. With not one hair out of place, he casually sauntered into our shop and helped us dress into our summer kimnonos. On his last day in California, we had dinner at my house. While preparing for our temaki dinner, Moto showed me how […]