Ever sit down to eat a meal and wish you knew how many calories or salt were in your food? Ever cooked a piece of meat or fish only to later wonder whether it might have gone bad? Last week, Chinese Internet giant Baidu announced that it has been working on a pair of wi-fi-enabled high-tech chopsticks that will be able to detect the nutritional makeup of the food it touches as well as warning consumers of any safety issues such as contaminants or expired food.
- Anime News Network
Sep 8, 2014
Now that the whole debacle over Hello Kitty’s identity is settled, fans can get back to other things, like preparing for the first ever Hello Kitty convention, set to take place from October 30 to November 2 in Los Angeles.
And, at least in that small corner of town, everyone is ready. The Line, the official hotel of the convention, is trotting out special Hello Kitty-themed rooms, and a Hello Kitty Spam musubi by chef Roy Choi.
Sep 5, 2014
A decade or two ago, the big Japanese food export that everybody raved about was sushi. Sushi joints cropped up all over the place, with the more authentic places employing highly skilled Japanese chefs slinging expertly crafted sushi at exorbitant prices. In places like New York City, sushi was the go-to food if you wanted to eat out but keep it at least a little on the healthy side.
Then, Westerners apparently took a look at all the diet food in their grocery stores and bland sandwich wraps in their food trucks and decided to revolt. Suddenly, wraps, sushi and other healthy foods were replaced with cronuts, cupcakes, “all the bacon and eggs you have,” and, of course, ramen. Delicious, fatty, greasy ramen quickly replaced sushi as the hip Japanese food and Westerners are willing to pay top dollar for it.
Of course, some Japanese (primarily the slightly feral citizens of 2chan) argue that, for all the money they’re shelling out, Westerners couldn’t pick out a truly great bowl of ramen to save their lives. So, 2chan was unsurprisingly amused when Reddit user lemonpls posted to a foodie subreddit that he’d found the greatest bowl of ramen he’d ever had in his life… at a common fast food chain in Tokyo.
- Philip Kendall
Sep 5, 2014
I don’t know about you guys, but whenever I think of Kentucky Fried Chicken, or “KFC” as it doggedly insists on being called, I immediately think of computer peripherals. What’s that, you say? You’re a normal human being and so you’d never make such a peculiar connection? Oh. Well, perhaps you think of earrings instead?
There just doesn’t seem to be any stopping Funasshi, the anthropomorphic pear who serves as unofficial mascot for the city of Funabashi in Chiba Prefecture. Funasshi’s mix of cute looks and hyperactive gyrations have won over fans both in Japan and abroad, and now Japan’s hottest piece of fruit is ready to capitalize on its popularity with a new café in Tokyo’s fashionable Shibuya district.
We decided to pay a visit to the Funa Café on opening day, and couldn’t think of a better RocketNews24 delegate than our very own Mr. Sato, who it turn couldn’t think of a more appropriate outfit than his very own freaky Funasshi cosplay getup.
Bento is a big deal in Japan and competitive mothers are always trying to out-do each other, striving to create the cutest lunchbox. Lucky for them, Japanese companies have come up with a plethora of tools to add smiley faces, shapes, or words of encouragement to any food. Let’s take a look at just a few of the many items you can buy to spruce up your bento!
- Casey Baseel
Sep 2, 2014
Maybe it’s a result of having lived in one too many apartments with a cramped kitchen, or just a desire to reduce the number of dishes I need to wash, but I’ve never really understood the point of tabletop egg cups. I can’t imagine eating hard-boiled eggs frequently enough, or giving them such prominent billing in my diet, that I’d need to go out and buy specialized kitchenware for them.
I find myself warming to the idea, though, now that someone’s designed egg cups in a way that lets tiny edible sumo wrestlers grace your table.
- Casey Baseel
Sep 1, 2014
August 25 is Instant Ramen Day in Japan, in commemoration of the day back in 1958 when Nissin unveiled Chicken Ramen, the very first instant version of the country’s favorite noodle dish. In celebration, we were going to chow down on some instant ramen, but since we do that all the time anyway, somehow a bowl of plain ramen didn’t seem quite special enough.
So instead, we drew on our love of anime, world travel, and the simple joy of not sweating profusely to come up with four recipes to spruce up instant ramen, specially tailored to be simple enough for anyone whose cooking skills mean their home is always well-stocked with the stuff.
- Hayashi 'Fang' Hougi
Sep 1, 2014
British artist James Ostrer created a series of artwork titled Junk Food Portraits by layering amounts of all of our most familiar junk foods on models. The result is at once stunning yet unnerving. While these surreal images are indeed vidid, we have to admit they made us think: is this really thing kind of thing we ought to be putting into our bodies? No wonder these portraits caught the eye of so many Japanese net users!
I’m not really the most organized person around; my desk looks like someone who hates me with a dark passion sneaks in every night just to sweep papers around and knock stuff over. So I’ve never really had much interest in or need for one of those little random odds-and-ends plates to hold trinkets (the floor does a pretty good job of that, for me).
But, if you are an organized person, have a lot of trinkets or just like having cool stuff around to decorate with, you’re probably going to love these awesome dishes that can be molded into any shape your heart desires and returned to their original state over and over again.
- Michelle Lynn Dinh
Sep 1, 2014
Come autumn, the droning sound of an old man singing about yaki-imo (roasted sweet potatoes) fills the streets of Japan. A chilly weather treat that is usually bought from the back of a truck specially equipped with hot stones, yaki-imo is a fall favorite enjoyed by people of all ages. But as delicious as it may be – if internet raving is anything to go by – the yaki-imo ice cream made by the Imuraya Confectionery Company is even better than the real stuff…and it looks and tastes exactly like a roasted sweet potato!
Tokyo’s restaurants may have more Michelin stars, but for many Japanese foodies, the real culinary action is in Osaka. Particularly if your tastes run more towards good honest grub than haute cuisine, Japan’s second largest city is the place to be.
The people of Osaka enjoy a good meal so much that they coined the phrase kuidaore, to eat until you collapse. But even with this image firmly entrenched in our minds, the city has found a new way to surprise us with its gastronomic decadence.
On a recent day out in Osaka, our reporter stopped by a café and ordered a truly hard-core parfait. It wasn’t that the parfait was so big, and no, it didn’t contain any shocking ingredients. What blew our minds about this parfait was its topping.
It was a slice of cake, and it was so big it wasn’t even trying to fit into the glass.
- Casey Baseel
Aug 28, 2014
With the highest concentration of anime and video game specialty stores on the planet, it’s pretty easy to go over-budget spending a day in Akihabara. But while some otaku might claim that Japanese animation is their lifeblood, eventually everyone needs to eat something.
So for everyone with a crying wallet and a grumbling stomach, a new restaurant has just arrived in the neighborhood, serving pasta to-go, starting at just 190 yen (US$1.88).
Think you can identify all the prefectures of Japan? Yeah, neither can we. But that’s okay because now with the help of this impressively accurate cookie cutter set, you can study and eat a map of Japan at the same time. Mmmm, knowledge.
- Casey Baseel
Aug 27, 2014
With beautiful natural scenery, delicious food, and an unhurried atmosphere, Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido is one of the country’s most popular vacation spots. There’s one big drawback, though, which is that airfare to and from Hokkaido can eat up a big part of your travel budget, leaving you less cash to spend on a hotel with nice amenities or local delicacies like fresh salmon roe and scallops.
Recently, though, we found a hotel in Hokkaido that offers it all, with soft beds, all-you-can-eat seafood, an all-night hot spring, and even a price that makes it a very affordable luxury.
You know what’s apparently really popular right now? That Pizza Cats thing from Pizza Hut Japan. It’s a bunch of cats unwillingly forced into cute kitty-size Pizza Hut employee uniforms doing what cats do while someone films it and tries to stifle laughter. It’s all over the Internet.
Well, at least one Netizen has decided to get on the “reluctant sentient beings doing things they don’t normally do” bandwagon by placing a not-having-it-at-all and obviously confused baby in a salad bowl with a bunch of other salad ingredients because… INTERNET!
- Master Blaster
Aug 26, 2014
Snakes are a delicacy in many parts of the world and among them the Indochinese spitting cobra is held in high regard for both is scarcity and the alleged health benefits it holds to those who consume it.
For the people who prepare the cobras for consumption, however, it can be a completely different story. One chef in China’s Guangdong Province recently lost his life while dressing an Indochinese spitting cobra to serve to customers in a soup. Authorities are ruling this incident to be a freak accident. “Freak” is the operative word here, as the snake that bit the chef had reportedly had its head cut off several minutes earlier.
- Michelle Lynn Dinh
Aug 24, 2014
Twitter and Instagram has been buzzing about a new dish to hit Japanese kitchens: sweet peaches mixed with mozzarella cheese. And based on the reviews written by social-media-loving cooks in Japan, it’s the greatest dish in the history of food. Let’s take a closer look at how to rustle up this interesting grub and read some glowing reviews.
- Casey Baseel
Aug 23, 2014
In Japanese cuisine, one of the easiest dishes to prepare is ochazuke, or a bowl of rice mixed with tea. While you can spruce it up with things such as plum, salmon, or spicy cod roe, the rice and tea are really all you need.
But while almost all Japanese people enjoy an occasional ochazuke session, some foreigners find it a little unnatural to pour what’s generally a beverage over their food. The whole thing becomes even less attractive if you’re not a particularly big fan of the Japanese green tea that’s normally used.
So if you’re interested in gradually easing yourself into ochazuke, maybe you’d prefer to start with a less astringent beverage, like cola.
McDonald’s joints all around the world have some of the most interesting items. There’s of course Chicken Curry Rice in Thailand, American vintage burgers in Japan, and ramen at one McDonald’s in the US (of all places!). But we’ve never seen anything quite this fancy at a fast food restaurant anywhere, so we sent one of our reporters to check out the colorful macarons at a McDonald’s in Shanghai.
- 10 things foreigners do that Japanese people find amusing1
- Secrets of the sushi shops: 10 tips and tricks the chain restaurants don’t want you to know2
- 61 more images of cosmetic surgery from South Korea3
- Family: Utah man was cosplaying Samurai Champloo when shot, killed by police4
- Anime con aboard aircraft carrier attracts moe warships of all kinds, from the cute to the manly5
- Stylish new cat café in Asakusa would be nice even without the kitties, is awesome with them6
- Burger King Japan’s black burgers look unbelievably gross in real life7
- Norwegian rocker with insane vocal range covers anime songs and more【Videos】8
- These traditional Japanese hairpins may be too beautiful to wear9
- Rule 34 in action: Ryutaro Nonomura’s sobbing and ear-cupping immortalised in adult video parody10
- Artist turns innocent Disney princesses into flirty pin-up girls1
- Korean cosmetic surgery show treats two Thai women to free procedures2
- You’re in for a big surprise if you fall for this bikini wearing DJ’s sexy poster!【Photos】3
- 10 things foreigners do that Japanese people find amusing4
- 61 more images of cosmetic surgery from South Korea5
- Lifehack: Transform a Starbucks paper bag into a fully functional wallet!6
- Chinese university gets hot new Japanese teacher; internet goes crazy7
- Ao-nyan: Japan’s super-feminine model who’s, yes, actually a guy 【Photos】8
- School textbook is withdrawn after “teacher” on the front is recognized as Japanese adult video star9
- Family: Utah man was cosplaying Samurai Champloo when shot, killed by police10
- School textbook is withdrawn after “teacher” on the front is recognized as Japanese adult video star1
- Artist turns innocent Disney princesses into flirty pin-up girls2
- 6-year-old boy vowed to marry his childhood sweetheart, really marries her 18 years later3
- Ten-year-old boy cuts construction worker’s lifeline because noise was interrupting his cartoons4
- Surgery, diet, and sunscreen transform heavy, swarthy Thai boy into slender, tan-free lady5
- Hello Kitty isn’t a cat!? We called Sanrio to find out!6
- Lifehack: Transform a Starbucks paper bag into a fully functional wallet!7
- Scholars confirm first discovery of Japanese sword from master bladesmith Masamune in 150 years8
- Taiwanese Tsunade cosplayer sparks debate about public decency at events9
- Japanese actor’s unfortunate choice of t-shirt has net users amused, doubting his English ability10
- Nailed it! The shape of your nails may reveal the type of person you are!1
- “Mom’s 1st Birthday” – Try to get through this video without tearing up【Video】2
- School textbook is withdrawn after “teacher” on the front is recognized as Japanese adult video star3
- Artist turns innocent Disney princesses into flirty pin-up girls4
- How to make epic pancakes with your Japanese rice cooker5
- 6-year-old boy vowed to marry his childhood sweetheart, really marries her 18 years later6
- Ten-year-old boy cuts construction worker’s lifeline because noise was interrupting his cartoons7
- Surgery, diet, and sunscreen transform heavy, swarthy Thai boy into slender, tan-free lady8
- The clever way Japanese drivers thank each other without saying a word【Video】9
- Life’s not perfect? Says who? This woman’s life is too perfect to be true!10
- Stylish new cat café in Asakusa would be nice even without the kitties, is awesome with them
- Burger King Japan’s black burgers look unbelievably gross in real life
- Norwegian rocker with insane vocal range covers anime songs and more【Videos】
- These traditional Japanese hairpins may be too beautiful to wear
- Rule 34 in action: Ryutaro Nonomura’s sobbing and ear-cupping immortalised in adult video parody
- Artist turns innocent Disney princesses into flirty pin-up girls
- Monthly “Propaganda” event in Tokyo is a paradise for the trans and crossdressing communities
- Soft, squidgy and irresistible — these beautiful jelly soap balls have to be popped open to use
- Lifehack: Transform a Starbucks paper bag into a fully functional wallet!
- How to make epic pancakes with your Japanese rice cooker
- What your favorite sushi says about your income
- Own a pair of secret camera shoes? The police should be by shortly for a visit
- Taiwan’s Gym Queen is the latest to join the youthful-looking moms club