Japanese stir-fried noodles a huge hit in Kenya

Yaki udon, a Japanese stir-fried noodle dish made with thick, flat wheat noodles, is a popular and much-loved staple of Japanese cuisine. Both yaki udon and yakisoba—a similar dish which uses a thinner buckwheat noodle instead—are cheap, tasty, and readily available from many street food stalls and Japanese-style pubs). So when one of our RocketNews24 Japan reporters read that not only had a yaki udon restaurant opened up in Kenya, but that it was that it was a huge hit with the locals, he just had to check it out for himself.

Read on for our Japanese reporter’s restaurant review as he travels halfway across the world for a bowl of noodles.

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Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe wins China’s Confucius Peace Prize

It’s that time of year again. The time when the world waits with bated breath to see who was voted as Earth’s greatest contributor to peace and receives what may be the highest honor a human can receive. I’m talking, of course, about the Confucius Peace Prize.

The Confucius Peace Prize is an annual award given to those who work towards peace as seen “from an Eastern perspective”, with past laureates including Vladimir Putin and Fidel Castro. This year, the selection committee announced that the Confucius Peace Prize will go to none other than Zimbabwe President, Chairperson of the African Union, and one of Forbes’ “10 Worst Dictators” in the world: Robert Mugabe.

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We search for the best sushi in Kenya

Tuna is a powerhouse of a fish which swims all over the world’s waters, and the Indian Ocean is no exception. Countless fishing boats settle at major ports such as the one in Mombasa, Kenya, providing a breeding ground for commerce, cultural exchange, and of course fresh fish.

Our reporter Go Hatori, after getting voluntarily beaten by Maasai warriors, postulated that with Mombasa’s capacity to get fresh fish, there may very well be some great sushi in Kenya as well. Go didn’t really put any research into this, but what adventure starts with careful thought and census taking?

So he hit the streets of Nairobi and started asking people “Do you know any sushi restaurants around here?” Thinking he may have found a hidden oasis of sushi tucked away on the African continent, Go was able to compile a list of three Kenyan restaurants for his sushi safari.

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The Maasai people teach us how to kill a lion, demonstrate on our writer

Sure, you may have killed, like, 230 lions in Skyrim and traded in their pelts for a sweet dagger and maybe a cool tricorn hat, but it’s safe to say that, in real life, you probably wouldn’t fare so well against one of nature’s most efficient predators. First, where are you going to get a sweet set of gold armor and a giant warhammer? Secondly, humankind’s fight or flight response being what it is, you’re probably far more likely to projectile urinate onto your attacker while fleeing at top speed like the damn Roadrunner or something.

No, outside of Skyrim, there is only really one group of people (that don’t routinely use high-powered, modern weapons like they’re hunting the Predator) that can actually boast of taking on lions and walking away not only alive but victorious. Lucky for us, we’re tight with these folks – the Maasai people of Kenya and Tanzania – and they graciously taught us their technique, using one of our most unfortunate Japanese writing staff to demonstrate.

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Prestigious Japanese university comes up with cheesecake … made with Gorilla bacteria!

Alongside the famed Tokyo University, Kyoto University is definitely one of the top universities in Japan, known in particular for their innovative scientific research. It so happens that the university is currently holding its annual Open Campus event from August 6 to 8, and many prospective students are sure to be visiting for a chance to take a look inside one of the most prestigious institutes of learning in Japan.

Visitors to this year’s event may be surprised to find out, however, that they’ll be able to try a dessert made using a very unique ingredient indeed, and one that was discovered by one of the university’s own research teams — a bacterium found in the gut of gorillas!

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Facial correction app makes the world’s money funny

They say the most expressive part of your face is the eyes. The rest of the face might be saying “happy times”, but if you focus on the eyes, you might see “sad times,” or vice versa.

Purikura machines, or sticker picture machines, have long had an eye enhancement option, so it only makes sense for an application on your phone to have one as well. Many of them can even be used on everyday objects that have people’s faces on them, like the money resting in your wallet. But how do the respected and historical figures on cash look when you manipulate the size of their eyes? Is some secret emotion going to be revealed? Let’s find out after the jump.

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Natto Boys want to take their smelly beans to Africa, but they need your help

Natto Boys (Natto Danshi) are a group whose sole purpose is to share the ancient and traditional Japanese food natto with the world. However, with its acrid smell and texture of an alien autopsy subject, those are some high hopes.

Already in about half a year, the Natto Boys have established a website featuring over 100 serving suggestions for the fermented soy beans to help promote the food at home. Now, they want to take the next step into the world’s second largest continent, Africa, and to do this they have turned to us for help via crowdfunding.

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Artist magically transforms Sailor Moon characters into black women

As a huge fan of Sailor Moon, one artist decided to reimagine the characters in a fresh new way that resonated with them. In the resulting fanart the Sailor Senshi have undergone a magical transformation into black African women – check out these amazing illustrations below.

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Proceeds from gourmet New Year’s meals to be donated to help feed undernourished children

As a nation of die-hard foodies, Japan is always on the lookout for a memorable meal. We’re just a couple of months away from New Year’s, when Japan dines on some of its most opulent dishes of all as part of the multi-dish osechi meals that are traditionally eaten at the beginning of the year.

Recently, more and more families have begun purchasing their osechi rather than making their own, and we imagine quite a few have been tempted by the Mickey Mouse and Frozen versions we talked about last month. If you’re willing to hold off on satisfying your inner child for the sake of the world’s less fortunate actual kids, though, you might be interested in an osechi set that helps raise funds for charity group Table for Two.

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Table tennis greats serve up incredible 41-shot rally at Commonwealth Games

The 2014 Commonwealth Games were held in Glasgow from July 23 to August 3 with 71 nations competing in 18 different sports, table tennis among them. If you’ve never watched table tennis before, then you might be forgiven for thinking that it’s not particularly exciting. Think again.

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Ivory Coast’s grass-eating goalie amuses Japanese fans after elimination

After Japan’s hopes of advancing in the World Cup were dashed by a 1-4 defeat to Colombia, Japanese football fans have been looking for something to get them smiling again. And Ivory Coast’s goalie provided just the opportunity.

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What do this Japanese convenience store and Sierra Leone have in common?

The convenience store racket in Japan is fierce business with many shops jockeying for the top spot. Perhaps this was only in my local area, but about one or two years ago one of Japan’s biggest chains, FamilyMart, made an impressively bold Micheal Corleone-style house cleaning and began knocking off AM-PM and Sunkus outlets like modern-day Moe Greens and Emilio Barzinis and making them their own with a killer combination of great fried chicken and enthusiastic staff.

Now it’s gotten to the point that seeing FamilyMart’s green, blue and white signage is as common a sight as a traffic light when walking through the streets. It’s become so popular, in fact. that people are beginning to see links to other things – things such as the Republic of Sierra Leone.

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This table tennis player shows that “nothing is impossible” 【Video】

Have you ever given up on something you wish you’d persisted with? We’ve all quit something at one point or another in our lives and there are many reasons for giving up. It sounds great to be able to play an instrument effortlessly, master a sport or become fluent in multiple languages, but once the reality of just how much work goes into a skill sinks in, it can often feel impossible.

Meet Ibrahim Hamada of Egypt, a table tennis enthusiast who says, “Nothing is impossible as long as you work hard.” That may sound like the kind of thing that can only be said by the exceptionally naive, but that is not the case here. He was involved in a train accident when he was 10 years old, and he lost most of his arms as a result. At 13, he was determined to find a way to play again.

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A Maasai tribesman in Ginza: How Tokyo fashion empowers women a world away in Africa 【Photos】

Glitzy Ginza is a high-end shopping district in Tokyo that attracts luxury brand flagship stores, ladies who lunch, and businesspeople with cash to burn. But if you happen to be there this week, you might spot something very incongruous in this moneyed mecca: a Maasai tribesman selling shoes.

William hails from Kenya, where he is the head of a Maasai tribe, and the shoes he is here to promote are a Spanish brand called Pikolinos. So how did an African tribesman end up in the Japanese capital selling European shoes?

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Tensions in Ghana rising between locals and Chinese over gold

Despite the frequent complaint in many nations about jobs being moved to China, not everyone in the planet’s most populous country can easily find work domestically. People from the country’s more impoverished regions sometimes see going overseas to be their only means of obtaining gainful employment, and over the last decade more than 500,000 Chinese nationals have moved to Ghana.

However, history is rife with examples of countries taking issue with sudden influxes of foreign workers or capital. In Ghana, it appears tensions are rising between Chinese workers and businesses and their Ghanaian hosts over one of the most historical measures of wealth, gold.

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We celebrate Pocky Day by sharing Japanese candy with the Maasai people of Kenya

Along with having a pleasing smell, one of the essential requirements of being part of the RocketNews24 team is a certain measure of eloquence. I can proudly say that the rest of the crew writes really, really good (they also help me out a lot, quite obviously).

But sometimes, words aren’t quite enough. How can mere prose do justice to the subtle hues of a cherry blossom, or the reverberations of a temple bell? Sometimes, in order to properly carry out our mission of spreading the simple joys of Japanese culture, we have to carry it with us and head out into the world, which is just what we did recently while traveling Africa.

Unfortunately cherry blossom season is still about five months away, and we couldn’t fit our cast-iron bell in the overhead bin, so we settled for the next best thing: bringing boxes of the chocolaty snack Pocky to share with the Maasai people of Kenya.

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Popular Japanese travel guide for East Africa is filled with thrilling tales of danger

Japan is, by almost any criteria, an extremely safe country. You can wander most back alleys of Tokyo in the dead of night without any sense of danger, and calmly carry huge amounts of cash secure in the knowledge that you’re about as likely to come across a mugger in downtown as a man riding a horse.

While this bubble of safety is definitely a plus when you’re inside it, the flipside is that Japanese travelers, unaccustomed to street crime, violent or otherwise, tend to be extremely risk averse when going abroad. Driving this point home is the East Africa edition of a popular series of Japanese guidebooks, which is filled with warnings of danger that seem more like something out of a pulp action novel than a travel reference.

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Increase in Male Rape Victims Concern Zimbabwe Police

Police in Zimbabwe’s eastern province of Manicaland are asking men to stay alert following an increase in rapes perpetrated by one or more groups of women. The announcement was made following a four-day sexual assault of a young male soldier by a gang of four women.

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Millions of Chinese-Made Condoms Seized in Africa After Reports of Holes and Tears

It was revealed on April 20 that millions of condoms that had been freely distributed in the Republic of Ghana, West Africa, are being recalled after they were found to contain holes or susceptible to tears and bursting.

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Saved by a Turban: Japanese Tigantourine Worker Heroically Rescued by Algerian Workers

During a press conference on 25 January, Takeshi Endo, a representative for, JGC Corp, the construction firm working at the ill-fated Tigantourine natural gas plant told the story of one lucky survivor who was rescued by the Algerian workers there.
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