Eat This! : Okinawa Pt 2

Back for some more of my travel tales?
Well I fear this one is more to do with food!

Okinawa's cuisine is very different from that on the Japanese
mainland. For a start they are really, really into pigs!
Pork - pork - pork everywhere!
Okinawan's are amongst the longest living people on earth.
I wonder if all this pork has anything to do with it? DOUBT IT! I reckon it must be the sea air!

I am not a big pork lover myself but as they say...

"When in Rome....."

Thus you can guess what was on the dinner menu:
"Rafti" or slow stewed pork belly.
Hiro loves this.
As for me - I try to pick all the fat off, which, I suppose is against point!

Guess what this is:
When you go to any restaurant in Okinawa they give you a small "welcoming dish" with your first drink. On this day it was "mimiga". Sliced pork ears or to me -gristle plain and simple I don't think I will try this again!

The highlight of the meal for me was umibudo.
Literally "sea grapes" and referred to in Okinawa as green caviar. I really like the texture and fresh taste. It is great with some ponzu. This stuff only grows in clean sea water, or so I am told.

The next day hailed our return to Tokyo but before catching our flight, we took the chance to do a little shopping and mooching around.

Anyone for some ice cream?

Would you still want some if I told you this is SALT ice cream?
Now when I say "salt" I mean "yukishio" which is powder fine sea salt high in mineral content from the island of Miyako-jima.

It tasted very dairyish, creamy and smooth and salty.
Almost like butter. I LURVE butter so it was yummy.

Next we stumbled across the sight to behold that is Makishi Market
Known to many as the "kitchen of Okinawa" this place is a hive of buzzing activity. Little old but loud ladies shouting about their shell fish. Butchers eager to show you their piggy bits. Fish mongers flaying fish of all kinds.
Gawping fish mouthed visitors.

Now you must think me an utter food snob but I am of the opinion that fish from colder waters taste supremely better than fish from warmer seas. However, warm water prawns smack their frigid maties well out of my frying pan.

Makishi market does something unique!

You can pick and buy your fish in the market and then send it upstairs to be cooked as per your fancy:
I picked prawns!! You shouldn't be surprised now really!
The two largest ones on the left dish in fact.
On my plate:We had one grilled with salt and t'other grilled with butter. Both were sumptuously scrumptious. I wish I could have these again. You can sort of measure their size against my beer glass in the background.

Also on the menu:

If ever you visit Okinawa - I urge you to visit this place!

It is a bit of a freak show but you know that that is my cuppa chai:
The work of a proud slightly mental butcher!

Now let's turn our attention to a little something else:

It happens to be my birthday today.
Quite frankly, I HATE THIS DAY!
Alas, I shall not dwell on it!

Let this be the day when I start my QUICK FIRE GIVEAWAY MADNESS!

Up for the taking today is:

A Visee "Blossom Eyes" Shadow Palette in lovely shades of pink and plum. & A super fine tipped black eyeliner from Makemania

The question is:

"What do you think is the best thing to do with a tomato?"

All answers must be flung into my comment box!
You must be a follower and I shall let you know who has won tomorrow evening at some point (UK time)!

The next Quick Fire round will be sometime in the random but just around the corner future.

As we are bidding ta ta to Okinawa in this post and heading for some Tokyo madness.......lets have a toast!



  1. I've never heard of salty ice cream but it sounds delicious! LOL at the cool pig :D.
    Oh, Happy birthday!!! Hope you'll have a blast.

    As for tomato, I think it'll be great as skincare! You can just mash it then apply the pulp on your face and your acne will disappear! :D

  2. I wanna try dem sea grapes and that salt ice cream. *puts it on the list*

    If I were that butcher, I'd put some cherries in tha piggy's nostrils.

    Tomatos are best when thrown at girls with high pitched voices. Right in the throat. Youknowwhatimtalkinbout!

  3. Lol I find that pig + glasses hilarious! Not something I would've expected to see in Japan :)

    Happy birthday Yasumi! Haha my bf hates his birthday too. Probably the best thing to do with a tomato is to pelt it at Justin Bieber. Then run & hide before his fans tear you to pieces...:D

  4. okinawa looks like a lot of fun! my husband loves that pork too haha. the ear gristle is also a chinese delicacy! i would love to goto okinawa one day, if only it wasnt so expensive!

    ahh visee palette - thats funny, on the visee website and palettes we got are called blossom eyes... ah well all the same :)

  5. Nic Nic - serves me right for not reading the website! Bought this from HAC so I am sure it is the same thing just different packaging awight?

  6. What to do with tomatoes: Bruchetta. I love chopping tomatoes up, drizzle EVO with garlic powder and chopped fresh basil and throw it on toast that was baking in the oven and between the toast and tomatoes I slather garlic hummus. Its delicious and healthy and sometimes i add scrambled eggs on that toast and call it breakfast bruchetta. Yum!

  7. P.s. I want to try sea grapes. And sea salt ice creme.Sigh. *dreaming*

  8. A tomato? why, the only sensible thing to do with it would be to make Chakalaka with it xD
    That or Tomato Sauce flavoured Simba chips.

  9. wow the salty sea ice cream and sea grapes are def something new to try ^^ i need to travel the world some day and japan is on the list =]

    the best thing to do with a tomato? hmmm. im torn between throwing it at someone and making a really yummy pasta sauce that involves chicken haha. actually, i think i'll stick to throwing tomatoes at kpop groups that i don't really like *cough SISTAR cough*

  10. Happy Birthday - I hide on mine too but I know others love to celebrate so hope you are having a great day. My husbands was on the 1st and I have 2 other friends with birthdays on the 2nd and 3rd....and now you on the 5th.
    I don't eat red meat (I count pork as red) but the sea grapes and the prawns look amazing. Salty ice cream - Mmmm - you has sweet potato yesterday. Have you even more interesting flavours up your sleeve? Xxxx

  11. Ohh, Philippines is all about pork, too! The sea grapes look most interesting to me though! And the sunglasses-pig reminds me of lechon (which is a whole roasted pig, usually at big gatherings in Philippines) - they always seem to prop the head stuffed with fruit in the eyes and such in the middle of the platter!

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY! If you were here, I'd make you noodles - we eat them on birthdays to symbolize a long life (at least according to my whole extended family). As it is, I hope your work day passes quickly and you get something yummy to eat for your day :D

    Mmm... I think the best thing to do with a tomato is eat it! I like mine on toast, with a bit of cheese. Somehow I prefer raw tomatoes over cooked ones (like in pasta).

  12. Happy birthday!

    I've had the pig ears.
    Not something I crave, but they go well with beer.

    As for the tomato, I would use it to make tomato beef chow mein.

  13. I love tomatoes sliced by itself.

    The green sea grapes look so pretty.

  14. Happy Birthday.......

    Wow..I love pork so probably, I'll love living in Okinawa....haha....my family loves that green grape thingy, they'll just put vinegar on it....I haven't had it for a long2 time...OMG....that prawn is huge....

    as for Tomato, the best thing & the only thing I know how to use it is in Spaghetti....hehe...

  15. Happy Birthday! :)
    Okinawa sounds great, I want to go Japan... :)

    Hmm, tomatoes. I like to keep it simple. Tomato with mozzarella on bruchetta and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Yum :D x

  16. the best thing to do is sun dry them, DELICIOUS. either that or throw some at the growing amount of online trolls.. but then again i guess they'd have to be virtual tomatoes :P

    happy birthday!!

    salt ice cream sounds amazing. there's a "milk" or "cream" flavor over there that is to DIE for... i soooo wish they had it here :(

  17. Use tomato to make my grandma's awesome basil and tomato with a bit of olive oil side dish to add on a salad.

  18. Happy birthday!! Okinawa and all the food looks amazing.... The sea grapes and salt ice cream sound incredible!!

    Tomatoes are best with olive oil, basil and mozzarella~ maybe some balsamic too and ciabatta or somthing... and a sprinkling of sea salt. yum~

  19. the silent one...5 August 2010 at 23:15

    Happy Birthday Yasumi!!


  20. Those prawns are like MAMMOTH KILLER PRAWNS, they're huge! You're going to need the tomato as a distraction so you can run away safely!

  21. I really like the first photo. :) It's exactly how I see you, looking off into your next adventure!
    yummmmm, the food looks delicious!

    Hmmm, if it was a cherry tomato, I would pop it in me mouth and eat it! but if it was a regular tomato, I would of course make some veggie art! An Old Cow bust, perhaps? Although I'm not quite sure how I'd capture the twists of your lovely hairdos. I would of course place it in an altar among the other crazy whatsits that fill the House of Blues to be worshipped by all!


  22. Wow the food pic is making me hungry! seafood's awesome!

    I was told Tomato's great for healing sunburns! it's an old remedy a colleague told me about. Just get a ripped tomato and squish and rub. HAHA, I've never tried it since I like to stay out of the sun, but I've heard it works wonders! :)

  23. those sea grapes look delicious, as does the salt ice cream! you must have been in prawn heaven there! I hope that your birthday was a fun and memorable one :)

    best thing to do with a tomato...if I was in Spain on the 25th, I'd be throwing it at someone, along with hundreds of other people throwing tomatoes for La Tomatina! Otherwise I'd slice it up with some pieces of mozzarella and fresh basil, drizzle with EVOO & balsamic vinegar, and a dash of salt and pepper for a yummy caprese salad...I always crave them in the summer!

  24. Food and travel go hand in hand, I believe. But I am such a foodie myself so food and ...(fill in whatever) always goes hand in hand. I would be totally liking the salt icecream. In Italy they even seem to sell olive flavoured icecream (eeek), which I am not really sure about but I would try a small bite.

    That pig cracks me up...he still sees everything on the bright side (that explains the sunglasses) even when chopped up...

    Ok, I am up for the giveaway. The best thing to do with tomatoes = La Tomatina (the spanish tomato throwing fest). I really want to go this year!

  25. Those prawns are huge! Ahhh all your food posts...delicious!

    Aww sorry to hear you hate your birthday...I kind of know how you feel, but still, happy birthday! I'm sure it's over by now in your time zone so you should be happy, hehe.

    Hmm best thing to do with a tomato...eat it, of course, sun dried, YUM, or stuffed, ooh la la...otherwise, leave it on a chair or bench and see if someone sits on it. =) (Although, poor tomato if someone does!)

  26. What the heck is that blackblue fish?! Can you eat that? Rofl.
    Anyway, salt ice cream? Sounds funny! I wanna try it! ... Japan and Okinawa is so far away... Hm... Salt ice cream... I got video game memories from that!

    Also best things to do with a tomato... I say
    I either throw it at someone I don't like OR I gratinate it in the owen for my mom! (since I don't like tomatoes very much and my mother LOVES tomatoes!)

  27. Sofie - Its a parrot fish! YES they eat them. Not on my plate though! uh uh!

  28. Happy happy birthday. Oh, those prawns look delicious. I like the sound of salty ice-cream - I love salty caramels and fudge.

    The tomato - hmm. It is a bit chilly and grey here, so I think I'd chop it up and make it part of a nice sausage casserole.

  29. Essh I don't like pork either.But those prawns...are something else.
    Happy Birthday! :D

  30. i love to make a small hole in the tomato and squeeze in a sour plum! and keep it in the fridge as a after meal dessert! it is said to be beautifying and it flushes out all the toxins from your body!

    parrot fish!!!??? i thought they are just ornamental fishes!! i love the foodie pictures!!LOL at the pig w sunglasses!

  31. Sea salt ice cream that tastes like butter..OMG that sounds like HEAVEN!! Psst..I have a secret..I don't eat piggy fat either. It really grosses me out, the texture isn't right and the flavor is yuck to me. I daintly chuck it into my napkin if I eat it by mistake.

    I know it's too late, but my favorite thing to do with a tomato is to put it on fries...duh!! Ketchup baby!

  32. Am royally late as as ever - Belated birthday wishes, dear Lady. All this food - everything looks so toothsome - apart from the Pork which I very rarely eat. I once enjoyed salted iceream in Jamaica, West Indies and it was delish;-)
    Oh, love all the fish in this post, though.

  33. hi ms. yasumi! sorry i've been MIA for a while and i'm totally sorry for not greeting you on your special day (been soo busy =_=) so happy happy belated birthday!! and i wish you more happiness in life and good health ^_^ btw you made me reminisce Okinawa (when i used to live there) with all the food and location you went. lol i remember orion beer festival!!omg it's soo much fun!! i want to go back soo bad :( i miss okinawa...

  34. If it's snobby to consider cold water fish way better than warm, consider me a TOTAL ponce. I was born in Hokkaido and the fish there just can't be beat.


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