Japanese food engineers have created a cabbage jelly that you can eat, if you want

No one asked for a product like this, but hey, now you can eat cabbage in jelly form!

Whether it’s shredded fine and mixed into okonomiyaki or stuffed into gyoza or cooked into a spooky soba, there’s a reason that cabbage has a top-three reputation in Japan. Not only is it crammed with leafy green goodness, it’s rich in antioxidants and helps with digestion. Depending on your taste buds, it’s a crunchy and delicious addition to your meal!

No one is more serious about cabbage than Mimatsu Foods, a gyoza and spring roll specialist. They’ve been working with local farmers to bring tasty delicacies to the people of the Gunma prefecture since 1970, and their passion for locally grown cabbage can’t be beaten. Sometimes this passion for their produce takes a decidedly weird turn, such as last year’s offering of “Cabbage Cider”.

▼ All the refreshing taste of cabbage in carbonated beverage form

The cabbage cabal is back at it again, and this time they’re marketing something even more bizarre: konjac jelly flavored with their homegrown cabbage extract. Konjac potato (or konnyaku, as it’s called in Japan) contains a naturally concurring gelatin, and it’s popular to use in many dishes or even to spice up drinks with a bit of added texture.

However, while it is a common staple in Japanese cuisine, konjac is usually either mixed with fruit juices, added to smoothies, or deep-fried so it can be served as oden. Eating it on its own merit is a little strange even for health nuts. Going one step flavor and making that konjac jelly cabbage flavored is something no one had ever thought to try… Until now.

▼ Mimatsu Foods’ online retailer boasts that the jelly is Gunma-exclusive and uses extract from Tsumagoi cabbages

On top of the inherent strangeness of cabbage flavored konjac, konjac itself can be dangerous to eat if your throat muscles are still developing or weakened. Young children and old people are warned not to eat much konjac, and if they do they should cut it into small pieces and chew thoroughly to avoid death by choking (just like with New Year’s mochi).

So it’s dangerous, unusual and tastes like cabbage. What’s the appeal? Well, for one thing it’s being marketed as a diet food – because konjac takes a long time to eat with all the chewing and swallowing, it stands to reason it might trick your brain into thinking you’re more satisfied and hence you eat less. The locally grown cabbage extract is presumably full of nutrition, too.

One of the nicest perks of the product is that it lets the company use up all the unused bits of the cabbage that don’t go into rolls and dumplings. The cabbage extract that goes into the konjac is extracted from cores and outer leaves left behind by the six tons of cabbage Minmatsu Foods uses every day.

▼ Just look at that exciting lime green color!

The cabbage jelly is sold in packs of six tubes for 197 yen (US$1.80), just like a Go-Gurt but with more nutrients (and a higher risk of death). You cut open a tube and slowly feed it into your mouth as you chew off the part that extrudes, taking care not to bite off too much at once. The cabbage flavor is intense but lacks sweetness, so you could theoretically mix it into a smoothie or toss it in a salad for a powerful leafy boost.

The internet’s responses to this product have been… mixed, to say the least. One comment said “Literally no one wanted this” while another said “It looks tasty! I am a caterpillar, though.” The one thing everyone seemed to agree on is that if you eat a lot of this you can expect some pretty impressive bowel movements. How healthy!

If you’re interested in sampling this chewy cabbage treat for yourself, you can buy a bulk order of cabbage jelly directly from the brand’s online shop. The gift shop Gunma Iroha in Takasaki Station also sells the jelly, which could make a great souvenir for someone next time you’re in the area. If you’re travelling through Yamanashi prefecture, maybe you could even scout out a bottle of cabbage wine to wash it down with.

Source: Livedoor News/J-Town via Jin
Featured image: Pakutaso
Insert images: Mimatsu Foods/RON-Gyouza (1, 2)

Our male Japanese-language reporter gets a professional makeover, becomes pretty cheerleader


Football players might be surprised by what they’d find under this cheerleader’s skirt…

Our male Japanese-language reporter Ahiru Neko claims he doesn’t know much about women. How do they think? What makes them happy? What makes them mad? What kinds of troubles do they have? Right now, he can’t answer these questions, but at 32 years old, he feels like it’s time to find out. How will he do it? By dressing up as a woman.

Now, unlike one of our other reporters, Go Hattori, who regularly puts 100 percent into becoming his female alter ego, Rei-chan, Ahiru Neko has never cross-dressed before, so he decided to leave everything to a professional makeup artist. He chose a salon in Tokyo’s Ebisu neighborhood, called ZOOM, which specializes in gender transformation makeup.

According to Otsuka, his stylist, Ahiru Neko’s oval-shaped face is a standard male trait, so the key to his successful transformation is to disguise it. But even with such a complex concept, it only took 60 minutes to complete his transformation.

First they had to cover his light facial hair.

Then they had to widen and brighten his eyes.

Next was to apply fake eyelashes.

At this point, Ahiru Neko looked more like an actor in a traveling theater group than a girl, so he began to worry that he wasn’t really going to be able to be transformed after all. Once Otsuka drew on feminine eyebrows, though, he began to look at lot more feminine.

▼ Never underestimate the power of the eyebrow.

Finally, Otsuka-san applied some lipstick, and the process was finished!

…But Ahiru Neko was still worried. “Do I really look like a girl?” he wondered as he looked himself over in the mirror. “Something is missing…”

Then Otsuka-san brought out the linchpin: the wig! “The wig has a tremendous influence,” she said as she settled it on his head. And voila! With this final touch, Ahiruneko’s manly oval face has been transformed into the sweet, soft features of a pretty girl!

Somewhere along the line (Ahiru Neko doesn’t remember where exactly), he was put into a cheerleader outfit. Cute, isn’t he?

Ahiru Neko was beyond impressed by the power of makeup, and especially by the skills of professionals. But does he understand women a little better now? Well, just by having someone turn him into a girl, not really. What he does understand, though, is a little bit of the trouble women go through every day to look beautiful.

Why? Because he had to shave his body hair. We’re not just talking face and armpits; they shaved his legs and arms too. Ahiru Neko quickly learned what a pain that is. It takes a very long time. He finds it terrible that women have to do that on a regular basis!

What was also time-consuming was removing the makeup afterwards. “Do women really have to do this every day after work?” he wondered as he painstakingly wiped layers of makeup from every corner of his face. “Seriously?”

He now really respects women who take the time to do it before going to bed, especially after going out drinking after work. Even knowing it’s bad for your skin, he thinks he would be too lazy to take it off every night, and end up going to bed with it still on.

▼ Welcome to the daily struggle, Ahiru Neko. That’s why there are scores of cosmetics for lazy girls.

Though it was only for a short time, Ahiru Neko was glad to have tried out becoming a girl. He learned a lot and gained a new appreciation for the struggles of women. He would even recommend that all men give it a try!

If you’re a man who’s not ready to take the leap, though, try starting with a makeup tutorial video. At least that way you’ll know how time-consuming putting on makeup is.

Images ©SoraNews24

We try 7-Eleven Japan’s latest fancy desserts: ice cream macarons【Taste test】

Meringue meets ice cream in convenience store chain’s latest summer-themed dessert offering.

While the temperature and humidity is still bearable, at least here in Kansai, summer is coming. While frantically fanning yourself and putting a bag of frozen edamame beans down your T-shirt are both excellent ways to try to beat the heat, cold drinks and ice creams are a rather more enjoyable way to fight off the high temperatures. To that end we decided it was high time to sample the luxurious new macaron ice creams available from 7-Eleven. It’s practically a public service announcement.

The new macaron ices, as they’re officially known, come in two different flavours, chocolate mint and mixed berry, each sandwiched in the crisp, sugary meringue goodness of two differently coloured macarons for desserts that hopefully taste as good as they look.

Chocolat, because it tastes fancier when you spell it the French way.

With Herculean effort we were able to artfully place the first of the two ice creams on a plate to take a photo before snaffling it down, in the interests of a proper food review, you understand. Our first impression when we opened the cool-green packaging was the refreshing smell of mint that poured out. Our appetites were well and truly whetted.

The mint-flavoured ice cream is capped by a vivid blue mint macaron on one side, and a rich brown chocolate macaron on the other. Despite the notorious fragility of meringue-based macarons ours seemed to have survived their frozen journey intact. As for the taste, the mint of the ice cream was cool but not overpowering and the macarons were sweet yet thanks to the ice cream not sickly.

Next up was the Mix Berry and its gaudy pink and purple macarons. Again, opening the packet released a strong summery fragrance, this time of berries. The pink macaron was strawberry-flavoured and the purple one tasted of blueberries, while the ice cream is also strawberry for a full berry blast. The slight citric tang of the berry flavour and the creaminess of the strawberry ice cream complement the macarons nicely without being too much. The two elements also add to the sated feeling you get from eating just one of them, not too bad when they come in at a not-unreasonable 153 calories each.

Seven Eleven clearly have an eye on capturing the taste buds and shutter clicks of the Instagram generation, as these sweets definitely have photogenic good looks, seemingly designed to grace a fair number of profile and background pictures across social media, with the delicious mix of sweet macaron and creamy ice cream.

Convenience stores in other countries might not be known for their quality or taste, with a stereotype of convenience that makes up for other shortcomings, but here in Japan a trip to a convenience store and a look at the limited-edition goodies on sale will soon have you reconsidering that, with delicious offerings from all of the main chains.

On the packaging the words FROZEN TREATS apparently warrant capitalisation, and they’re not wrong, they are both frozen and a treat that satisfies both our sweet tooths and our dislike of overheating. The new ice cream treats went on sale on 12 June and sell for 248 yen (US$2.30) each including tax and are our latest weapon in the fight to keep cool, and happy. Also, if you need more tips to survive the four-month long heatwave that is Japanese summer you’re in the right place.

Photos ©SoraNews24

【謎】Instagramが新しい動画サービス『IGTV』の提供を開始! 使ってみて感じた「最大の疑問」はこれだ!!

昔のInstagramは良かった。画面や機能がシンプルで、何かと使い勝手が良かったのに……。その魅力をかなぐり捨てるように(?)新しい機能が登場したぞ! 最大60分の動画を投稿できる「IGTV」だ。

わざわざ専用アプリまで出して、Instagramは何がしたいんだ……。という気が個人的にはするのだが、とりあえず使い方とチャンネル開設の手順を説明するぞ!

・YouTubeを意識?

このサービスはYouTubeを意識したものと見られる。たしかに動画サービスといえば、何といってもYouTubeだ。YouTuber という言葉も日本で十分に認知されており、最近は子どものなりたい職業のひとつによく挙げられる。

「Instagramer」という言葉はあるが、YouTuber ほどではないし、プロとしてやっていけるのかどうかも不明な状況。ここへきて、動画サービスに力を入れるのはアリなのかも。

・15秒から10分の動画

すでに気づいている人も多いと思うが、Instagramのアプリを起動すると、フィード画面の右上に新しいアイコンが表示されているはずだ(表示されない場合は、最新バージョンにアップデート)。フォローしている人がIGTVに動画を投稿している場合は、オレンジのグラデーションで目立つように表示されているはず。

これをタップすると、投稿動画を見ることができる。これまでInstagramは通常投稿で1分、ストーリーの場合は15秒の動画を投稿・視聴することができた。しかし、IGTVは1分以上の縦型動画を投稿できるのだ。

なお、投稿できる動画は縦型。また、60分の動画を投稿できるのは限られた人で、大抵は15秒から10分の動画となるようだ。

視聴する場合、投稿された動画はフォローしている人のものがデフォルトで表示される。そのほか「おすすめ」「フォロー中」「人気」の順でタブが設けられており、視聴途中で中断したものは「視聴を再開」で途中から見ることが可能だ。

・自分のチャンネルを作成

それから、「チャンネルを作成」をタップすれば、自分のチャンネルを作ることができる。

最初にチャンネルを作成するに当たってのヒントが表示され……

3つのヒントを確認すると、すでに自分のアカウント名でチャンネルが出来上がっている。

動画を投稿するには、右上の「+」をタップする。

・動画の詳細

端末に保存されているビデオから投稿したいモノをタップすると、投稿が可能だ。

投稿動画を選択したら「次へ」をタップ。

続いて、投稿動画の編集画面について説明しよう。まず、カバー・タイトル・詳細を入力。ちなみに、公開範囲にFacebookを設定することもできる。

「投稿する」をタップすると、IGTVのチャンネルに動画がアップロードされる。

アップロードが完了すれば、自分のチャンネルで動画を視聴することができるはずだ。

・動画のインサイト

動画を投稿すると、Instagramのホーム画面にもIGTVのアイコンが表示される。

ここでも自分の投稿動画を確認することができる。

なお、動画はインサイトで再生回数やいいね! の数、コメント数を知ることができるようになっている。

・最大の疑問

と、基本的なことを軽く実践してみたのだが、私(佐藤)が感じた最大の疑問が……

ぶっちゃけ、『IGTV』のアプリいる?

──である。というのも、IGTVの機能はInstagram上でも利用できるので、独立アプリをダウンロードする意味が、私にはちょっとわからない。Instagramだけでよくない? と思ってしまった。

とはいえ、私はまだ軽く使った程度なので、IGTVの魅力に気づいていないだけなのかもしれない。何度も使ってみると、その良さが分かるのかもしれないが……。

どちらにせよ、『IGTV』がどこまで浸透するのか? 気になるところだ。

Report:佐藤英典
Screenshot:iOS(Instagram)

Haneda Airport’s awesome sea bream ramen restaurant is the perfect way to end your trip in Japan

Make Japan even harder to leave by finishing your vacation with one of the most unique, satisfying ramen meals in Tokyo.

When traveling, the last day of your vacation usually ends up being the least enjoyable. By the time you get up and pack, there’s usually not time to do anything really fun before heading to the airport.

That can be especially frustrating if you’ve come all the way to Japan, and even more so if making your way to the airport means having to skip having lunch or dinner in Tokyo, the greatest city for dining out on the face of the Earth. But if you’re flying out of Haneda Airport, we’ve got good news for you, because the complex is home to one of the most memorably unique ramen restaurants we’ve found in quite some time.

We’ll get the one bad point out of the way first. Ramen restaurant Hitoshinaya is located in Haneda Terminal 1, not the International Terminal. However, the two buildings are just three minutes apart by train, and there’s also a free shuttle bus that runs between them, so a side-trip to Terminal 1 isn’t prohibitively time-consuming as long as you give yourself a little leeway.

While the most common types of ramen in Japan are soy, miso, or pork stock, Hitoshinaya’s specialty is something special: ramen with its broth made from tai, or sea bream. On our visit, we ordered the Tai Dashi Tai Kunsei Ramen (Sea Bream Broth with Smoked Sea Bream Raman), plus a side of ochazuke (usually meaning rice with green tea, but here referring to seasoned rice to pour ramen broth onto). The combo set us back 1,278 yen (US$11.70), which is just a bit on the pricey side for ramen, but the classy surroundings made it seem like a fair price, and if you’re looking to cap your Japan travels with a meal here, a shade over 10 bucks is definitely an affordable luxury.

After a five-minute wait, our order was ready, and we took a moment o admire its elegant presentation.

While the piece of smoked sea bream was the first thing to draw our eyes, we also spotted mizuna (potherb mustard) along with slices of red pepper, tomato, and sudachi, a refreshing lime-like Japanese citrus fruit.

Ramen-tasting always starts with the broth, though, so we scooped up a spoonful and took a sip. Hitoshinaya’s sea bream broth is also seasoned with kombu kelp, resulting in a rich, refined flavor, free of the heavy greasiness found in some varieties of ramen.

Ramen culture traditionally pairs certain thicknesses of noodles with certain broths, but having never had sea bream ramen before, we weren’t sure what to expect. Hitoshinaya uses moderately thick noodles that are straight, smooth, and a little on the soft side, allowing them to soak up plenty of the broth’s flavor.

Leaving the biggest impression on our taste buds was the smoked sea bream. While we’ve enjoyed Japanese tai as sushi and sashimi on numerous occasions, this was our first time to ever eat it as a ramen topping, and the enticing aroma only adds to its deliciousness.

Once we’d finished all our noodles, it was time to pour our remaining broth onto rice (an option also offered by Tokyo’s poisonous blowfish ramen restaurant).

▼ The ochazuke is additionally flavored with kombu, thin-sliced nori seaweed, wasabi, and fragrant leaves of mitsuba herb.

If we have one regret, it’s that since we only have one stomach, we didn’t get to try Hitoshinaya’s other star menu item, the Roasted Smoked Sea Bream Ramen. Given the restaurant’s location, odds are a lot of customers won’t be able to come back anytime soon (though we should mention that Hitoshinaya is outside the security checkpoint, meaning that even non-passengers can easily et there), so we recommend going with a friend so that you can order both types of ramen and share. And when the time does come to hop on your flight home, at least you can take heart knowing that it actually is possible to find great ramen overseas too.

Restaurant information
Hitoshinaya / ひとしなや
Address: Tokyo-to, Ota-ku, Haneda Kuko, 3-3-2, Terminal 1 North Wing 2nd floor
東京都大田区羽田空港3丁目3−2 第 1 ターミナル 北 ウイング2F
Open 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. (non-ramen breakfasts available from 5:30 a.m.)
Website

Photos ©SoraNews24

Hiroshi Tamaki & Haruka Kinami to marry!

Actor Hiroshi Tamaki will be marrying actress Haruka Kinami! The exciting news was confirmed by both of their offices.

Tamaki and Kinami originally met 8 years ago, and started out as friends. The two eventually became really close and their friendship turned into a romantic relationship.

In April 2017 they got to work together in the Fuji TV drama series “Onna no Kunsho”. Set just after World War II the story follows a dressmaker who is trying to make a name for herself in the industry. 

Both Kinami and Tamaki plan to continue activities as normal after getting married. Takami’s latest project is the film “Rapurasu no Majo”, which opened in May 2018. It also stars Arashi member Sho Sakurai and Suzu Hirose. Kinami recently appeared on an episode of the drama series “Miss Sherlock”.

Congratulations to the happy couple!

(modelpress)

The post Hiroshi Tamaki & Haruka Kinami to marry! appeared first on ARAMA! JAPAN.

Source

【W杯】日本代表危うし!? セネガルの怪物「カリドゥ・クリバリ」がヤバすぎるDFだと一発で分かる動画がこちらです

勝って兜の緒を締めよ。まさに今、サッカー日本代表はそんな状況にある。初戦のコロンビアで勝ち点3を獲得してホッとしている場合ではない。なにせ続くセネガル、ポーランドともに強敵だからだ。

次に対戦するのはセネガル(6月24日)。お互い初戦を勝ったチーム同士なので、ここでの勝敗がグループステージ突破に直結する。当然、相手も死に物狂いで勝ち点を奪いに来るが、特にDFのカリドゥ・クリバリ(27歳)には注意したい。

・すべてを兼ね備えたDF

セネガルといえばマネといったように、リヴァプール所属のアタッカーであるサディオ・マネが取り上げられることが多い。確かにマネはヤバい……ヤバいのだが、もっとヤバいのがクリバリだ。超簡単に言うならば、高い速い強い

Instagram Photo

身長195センチ、体重89キロ。体格に恵まれているだけでなく、圧倒的なスピード、そして何なら上手さまで兼ね備えているから脅威の一言に尽きる。先日行われたポーランドとの試合でも、クリバリは世界屈指のFWレヴァンドフスキを自由にさせなかった。

・どう怪物なのか一発で分かる

んで手っ取り早く彼を知るためにご覧いただきたいのが、どれだけヤバいDFなのか一発で分かる動画「Kalidou Koulibaly 2018 – Welcome To Chelsea? – Amazing Defensive Skills & Goals | HD」だ。ディフェンスシーン、そして得点シーンといい、映像を通して見ても凄まじい迫力で絶対にセットプレーを与えてはいけないことも分かる。

日本の前に立ちはだかる怪物がヤバすぎて、もしかしたら見終わる頃には絶望しているかもしれない。しかし、サッカーはチームスポーツである。相手がマサイ族の戦士も太鼓判を押す強さのセネガルといえども、一丸となって戦えば、勝機は必ず見いだせる。ガンバレ、日本!

参照元:Instagram @kkoulibaly26YouTube
執筆:原田たかし