My special porridge for colds

Yay, I’m totally recovered from a cold! So I want to intorduce the recipe which might have helped my recovery. As I explained in my last post, rice porridge is a popular meal for colds. This time, I added everything in my fridge that is effective to warm one’s body and help the immune system in it!

Ingredients: cooked rice for one person (this is to save time, so if you don’t have the stock of cooked rice, simply use uncooked rice and increase the amount of water), the same amount of water as cooked rice, one umeboshi, 100g lotus root,  1 tbsp grated ginger and green onion


1. Simmer cooked rice and water in a pod.

2. Add grated lotus root, chopped umeboshi and grated ginger. Simmer for a while.

3. Serve in a bowl. Top with sliced green onion.

Folk remedies for colds

In Japan, we say “Baka ha kaze o hikanai” which means a fool never catches a cold. I got a cold this Monday… So it’s proved I’m not a fool… but I prefer being a fool rather than being sick !

Let me introduce some folk remedies for colds in Japan on this occasion. Traditional examples are eating rice porridge, drinking sake-nog, wrapping a grilled green onion covered with cotton cloth around one’s neck etc… Today, many people like to take a sports drink or energy drink as well.

In the past, we were told not to take a bath when we catch a cold, but now it’s said it’s better to do so.

My favorite ones are: wearing lots of cloths, wrapping a towel around my neck, putting a instant hot pad between shoulder blades – there is an acupressure point effective for colds… and above all, eating “pucchin purin (popular pudding among kids)”. Usually I prefer more natural pudding. I don’t know why I feel like eating this only when I have a cold, but it seems it’s not only me. 

Do you have any special remedies for colds?


Japanese Batch Cooking Recipe: Japanese Sweet Potatoes Simmered with Lemon and Sugar

Satsumaimo-no-lemon-ni (Japanese Sweet Potatoes Simmered with Lemon and Sugar)” is extremely easy and quick to make. It can be served hot or cold, as side dish or dessert. It lasts about 4-5 days in a fridge.


Ingredients: 2 small Satsumaimo (Japanese sweet potatoes), 1/2 lemon, sugar  and water


  1. Slice sweet potatoes in 1cm thick. Peel off the lemon and slice them in 5mm thick. Put them in a pod.
  2. Pour water over them till they are just barely covered.
  3. Add 2 tbsp sugar, heat and simmer till soft.
  4. Leave them in a pot for a while to allow the taste of lemon and sugar go into the sweet potatoes.
*When you store them in a fridge, keep them with the lemon syrup left in the pod in a container with a lid.

Takikomi-gohan (Japanese flavored rice) with dried scallops

It’s worth¬†making takikomi-gohan¬†if you have¬†a chance to get nice dried scallops. In Tokyo, you can fine them in¬†the Tsukiji Outer Market or Ameyoko Shopping Street.

Ingredients:  2 rice mesuring cups of rice (approx 300g), 40g dried scallops, 1/2 pack enoki mushrooms, 1 sheet of aburaage, 1/2 carrot, 2 tbsp sake, 2tbsp soy sauce, 400ml water


  1. Soak dried scallops in water till soft (at least 3 hours, overnight if possibile). Don’t throw away this water as it will be used as dashi.
  2. Measure and wash rice to add in a rice cooker.
  3. Cut enoki mushrooms, aburraage and carrot. Add in the rice cooker.   
  4. Add water, sake and soy sauce and cook.

5. Once cooked, mix well and serve in a rice bowl.