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My Japanese Table: A Lifetime of Cooking with Friends and Family Hardcover – September 10, 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"My Japanese Table takes you on a valuable journey of all the different facets of Japanese cuisine."—Roy Yamaguchi, chef/founder of Roy's Restaurants


"The Boston Globe food writer Debra Samuels compiles 125 of her best Japanese recipes in the shiny, heavy and possess-able My Japanese Table."—Metropolis

About the Author

Debra Samuel's invites us to enjoy her lifetime of experiences with the people and cuisine of Japan. The co-author of the bestselling The Korean Table, Debra has been teaching cooking classes on Japanese cuisine for over two decades. She is a regular food writer and food stylist for the Boston Globe. When she's not visiting Japan, Debra lives in Lexington, MA with her husband. CookingAtDebras.com

An avid cook himself, Heath Robbins' passion for food is evident in his mouthwatering imagery. His pictures have graced the pages of national magazines and can be seen in advertisements for Welch's Grape Jelly, Uncle Ben's and French's. Robbins recently photographed Fresh and Honest, Ciao Italia Big Five and The Korean Table cookbooks. He resides in Sherborn, MA with his family.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Tuttle Publishing; Hardcover with Jacket edition (September 10, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 4805311185
  • ISBN-13: 978-4805311189
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.7 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #707,394 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Bundt Lust VINE VOICE on September 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Debra Samuels, a longtime resident of Japan, demystifies Japanese homestyle cooking in "My Japanese Table." Included are such favorites as sushi (including hand-rolled sushi and chirashi-zushi), skewers (grilled mixed veggie and tofu, chicken), donburi (one-dish meat and rice bowls), okonomiyaki (cabbage and egg "pancakes"), and a whole chapter devoted to bento, ornate Japanese lunchboxes prepared according to a strict balance of colors, flavors, and ingredients. I liked the photos of Debra's chrysanthemum bento box so much that I ordered an identical one from Japan!

"My Japanese Table" is a perfect starting point if you're new to Japanese cooking; it's not as intimidating or complicated as other Japanese cookbooks, and it uses commonplace American supermarket ingredients whenever possible. The vibrant photography and clear font make it especially easy to read and cook with. The thorough intro on Japanese cuisine includes the handy mnemonic device of "sa shi su se so" (the Japanese hiragana letters that correspond to sugar, salt, vinegar, soy sauce, and miso, the staples of the Japanese kitchen). And kudos for a particularly helpful section on Japanese ingredients with clearly labeled photos to match. There is also a handy bibliography and list of shopping resources (mostly online).

Like Tuttle Publishing's other Asian cookbooks, "My Japanese Table" is designed to fit today's busy lifestyle and includes many main-course recipes that take 30 minutes or less to cook using common (U.S.) supermarket ingredients (both the prep times and cooking times are helpfully included at the top of each recipe). Another bonus is that measurements are given both in metric and imperial measurements; no need to convert if you're cooking overseas.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this book. It was a great combination of her memories and simple versions of Japanese food. I was particularly happy to find a recipe for Black Sesame Seed Pudding--I'd eaten some in Japan, but didn't know what it was. When I saw the recipe, I realized what it had to be. The recipe was easy to follow, too. I also made okinomiaki and they were delicious--just like the ones I had in Japan. The bento section was very helpful, too.
My only problem was, my version is on my Kindle, which is not the best to cook from. A paper copy would be better to bring into the kitchen.
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Format: Hardcover
Debra Samuels' "My Japanese Table" is the first book I've found that approaches the art of Japanese cooking in a way to which I can relate. Her stories about her experiences in Japan could have happened to me. I am Japanese American, but my knowledge of Japanese customs, cooking, and way of life date back to the 1920s when my father immigrated to the US. Today, Japan is a very different place.

Samuels' book gives us a modern Japanese approach to traditional Japanese cooking. The flavors and tastes remind me of my mother's cooking, but without all that work. I was especially happy to find recipes for some of my favorites: Gyoza (Japanese Pot Stickers), Kara-age (Japanese Fried Chicken), and rice bowls and noodles with different toppings. Her clear and easy to follow instructions have opened up a new way for me to approach sushi, a dish that was always too much work and we made it only once a year for our New Year celebration.

I was so impressed with "My Japanese Table" that it was my Christmas present to all members of the next generation of my family, nephews, nieces, cousins, etc. I would recommend this book at anyone who loves Japanese food!
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Format: Hardcover
"My Japanese Table" is a perfect cookbook for people who like Japanese cuisine and Japanese culture. The book is filled with beautiful pictures, simple recipes and Debra Samuels' love for Japan. The stories about her experience in Japan and the stories related to each recipe are enjoyable to read. The book has many authentic home style Japanese food recipes such as Tonjiru (Chunky miso chowder), Nikujyaga (sweet soy beef and vegetables), Namasu (carrot and daikon salad), Chikuzen Ni (simmered vegetables with chicken), Oyakodonburi (rice bowl with three toppings) and Tamagoyaki (seasoned rolled omelet). The whole chapter about Obento represents Japanese ideas about food, eating and living and it might cause a lunch revolution in the U.S. The most helpful point in the book for me is that many recipes use ingredients that are easily found in average American super markets. As a Japanese woman living in the U.S., I appreciated advice about making traditional food with American ingredients. The descriptions of Japanese ingredients are also helpful for people who are new to Japanese food. Since the author completely understands Japanese cuisine, the descriptions of Japanese food are the most natural that I've ever read. "My Japanese Table" is a great book for all people who like Japanese cuisine and want to know Japanese culture.
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Format: Hardcover
I have a ton of Japanese cookbooks but I go back to this cookbook over and over again simply because I find the flavors so clean and delicious. The instructions are not complicated and the presentation of the food always inspires me. The photos are beautiful and I love the japanese dessert recipes that I don't usually see in other cookbooks. The obento chapter is a favorite and I now create fun obento lunches for my children. Debra Samuels is passionate about Japanese cuisine and it is evident in this cookbook. She enjoys sharing her love for Japan, the lifelong friends she has made there, the cuisine and what I love is that every recipe has a personal story attached to it. I totally recommend it!
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