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Hamburgers for one?

I live alone and I'm craving hamburgers. I bought a pound of ground beef not too long ago and froze it, and I'm defrosting it in the fridge now to make Mapo tofu tonight. That'll only use about 1/4 a pound, though, so the rest will be for hamburgers.

Since I'll only be able to eat one a day, what's the best way to preserve the ground beef? Can I mix it with spices, make it into patties, and refrigerate the patties? Or is it better to cook it and then refrigerate?

I know I can't freeze it, as I've already thawed the meat once.

Jun 23, 2013
Japanecdote in Home Cooking

Frugal, Tasty Recipes for Families on Public Assistance

I use grocerysmarts.com to find coupons. The site will show you what's on special at local stores and give you links to print out the coupons.

Jun 10, 2013
Japanecdote in Home Cooking

Birthday Dinner in Nashville

My birthday is this week and my parents are coming into town to have dinner with me the night before. I've only lived in town a couple months, and have a limited budget, so I haven't gotten the chance to eat out much.

I'm looking for somewhere American or Italian, under $20 a plate, generally, and if possible, with good views of the city or a nice atmosphere.

(I did go to City House when I first got the job here, so that's my backup option if I can't find somewhere new.)

Thank you!

Undercooked/Uncooked Chicken

Thanks for all the replies, everyone!

This actually happened a few months ago and I was just remembering it and was curious... no one got sick or anything and we didn't bring it up to the restaurant.

I'm glad I found out it was 'rare' in the middle after I'd already eaten a few - they were delicious and I may not have eaten them if I'd seen that first, or at least eaten them more cautiously.

I probably won't be eating chicken sashimi any time soon, but I will try more yakitori with a pink middle.

Jun 23, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Food foreigners take back home when they visit America.

I don't really like the taste of root beer myself, but I know plenty of Americans here that miss it... and aping ninrn, every foreigner (Japanese, Australian, New Zealander) who has tried it has hated it.

That being said, I think root beer is available/enjoyed in Okinawa, Japan. Because of the US military presence there many western foods have become popular and been woven in with the native foods.

Jun 19, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Eating out in Japan, the language issue

To be honest, I think the hand-waving/scared look is ruder than the initial talking.

If a German tourist came up to me and asked me something in German, I would just shrug, look apologetic, and say "Sorry, I don't speak German." Japanese people sometimes seem to take it as an attack, thus the frantic hand-waving and backtracking away.

Jun 15, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Undercooked/Uncooked Chicken

I have a question in general about chicken in Japan. I know in some places it's served raw as sashimi, so does that mean that there are no laws to regulate how cooked chicken should be?

I ask because of one situation in particular - I was at a yakitori place with friends and we were eating some (fantastic, delicious) breast-meat chicken. We'd all been eating the pieces in one bite, but a friend cut hers in half and found the middle to be very pink. We were torn on what to do - send it back or assume that's how it's supposed to be.

Is chicken often cooked "medium" here? Or does that seem like a mistake by the kitchen?

Jun 12, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Food foreigners take back home when they visit America.

Yep, sounds like Kit-Kats... and we're certainly grateful for them!

Jun 12, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Food foreigners take back home when they visit America.

Living in Japan, my (mostly) American friends and I bring back/receive from friends in the US:

Cereals that aren't cornflakes
Cheez-its/Goldfish
Mac and Cheese
Taco seasoning
Reeses and Twix
Sriracha

I think junk food tends to be the things taken overseas because the food we really want - cheeses, fruits, meats - are impossible to ship.

Jun 09, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Popular Southern Hot Sauces

A popular one in North Carolina is Texas Pete, but if he's at NC State I imagine he can get some...

May 23, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Official State Foods & Beverages

North Carolina's state food should be pulled pork, but I'm afraid of the civil war that would ensue when they try to decide which sauce to put on top...

May 22, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Endangered and Extinct: Taco Flavored Doritos

Taco Doritos are alive and well in Japan! They are often the only flavor available, more popular than even Nacho Cheese.

I never had the original, but I think they taste pretty good.

May 16, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

French pastry shops

I've had a great time reading this thread and now I definitely have a craving for macaroons! Too bad my little city isn't cosmopolitan enough to have any.

I'm headed to Osaka this Saturday for the day and wondered if anyone knows of any outstanding pastry shops there? I'll be around the Namba/Shinsaibashi area, but am willing to travel for croissants.

Apr 19, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Krispy Kreme...still number one with me.

The brand has been here for 5 years, still going strong.

Apr 14, 2011
Japanecdote in Chains

Convenience Products And The Environment-How Ridiculous Can You Get?

It's true! Bananas in a plastic bag, apples, oranges, pears in a little plastic net, grapes in a plastic box, etc etc etc. Japan is the king of wasting packaging materials.

Apr 13, 2011
Japanecdote in Not About Food

Paying for rice.

Restaurants in Japan also generally charge for rice.

Apr 13, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Krispy Kreme...still number one with me.

I live in Japan, and the Krispy Kremes here are hugely popular - I mean lines stretching out the front door, security guards hired to control the crowds, etc.
So they didn't fail in every market.

Apr 13, 2011
Japanecdote in Chains

Food Franchises That Don't Suck

(This thread may be 4 years old, but...)

Our Spaghetti Factory was also in a brick building (an old mill office, I think) and had a real trolley car inside. When I was little I thought I didn't like spaghetti (since mom didn't), and this was the first place I tried it and discovered I loved it.

Mar 29, 2011
Japanecdote in Chains

How to eat sushi?

I think that like a lot of foods, the way you eat sushi depends a lot on where you're eating it. If you're in a high-end restaurant, sitting at a bar in front of an experienced sushi chef, it's just good manners to exercise a little decorum when you're eating, just like you wouldn't chug a glass of red wine in front of a sommolier in a fancy restaurant.

On the other hand, most sushi restaurants (in Japan and America) are not super fancy. In those cases, I say just eat however you want. In kaiten sushi places in Japan I see Japanese people doing all kinds of things listed here as being bad manners - mixing wasabi and soy sauce, using their hands, wolfing down multiple rolls.

Anyway, if it increases your pleasure of the meal, by all means follow these directions. If not, what's the point?

Mar 29, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

Marcel's Quantum Kitchen: Sneak Peek!

Remembering his personality on Top Chef makes me have exactly zero interest in this show.

Mar 29, 2011
Japanecdote in Features

What's The One Thing You Can't Eat, even for money.

I'm a pretty picky eater, but I'm usually able to at least eat a bite of thing before declaring it inedible. There's probably a lot of things that I wouldn't even be able to get close to my mouth without gagging, but one in particular comes to mind...

In Japan it's called Shirako, according to Wikipedia it's also known as milt. It's basically fish sperm. I've never had it, but according to some lady friends, and trying not to be too vulgur... it isn't dissimilar from the human version.

Ugh. I think that would be grounds for vomiting on the spot.

Mar 23, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

In a disaster what would be the most urgently needed foods in your area?

Just a thought, I think the items needed in Japan are those most needed by shelters housing people who've been displaced. In those cases, I think most shelters have at least some kind of generator or hot pot that can boil water, which would be all you need for rice or instant miso soup.

I just sent a couple of boxes to Japan's Second Harvest yesterday, and if anyone's interested I sent a few cans of salmon, canned corn, canned fruit cocktail, instant noodles, instant miso soup, instant corn and potato soups, and a package of Japanese-style snacks (dried seaweed, dried octopus, etc... all stuff I've called cat food in the past, but I know it's very comforting to have snacks and food from your childhood in a stressful situation).

Even where I live, hundreds of miles from the epicenter and affected areas, people have bought out instant noodles, presumably because they're making their own earthquake kits.

Mar 22, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

What is the VERY BEST thing you've ever eaten?

I'll have to say that more recently it's been eating Omi beef at a Korean-style yakiniku restaurant. Perfectly juicy and flavorful, it just melted in my mouth.

And, I'm not ashamed... every time I get drunk, McDonald's french fries are the best thing I've ever eaten.

Mar 16, 2011
Japanecdote in General Topics

[Should I travel to Japan?] Food industries in Tokyo - business as usual?

I'd suggest just postponing your trip for a month or so. I believe a lot of airlines are waiving cancellation or changing fees right now.

That being said, I think it is being way over-hyped by the foreign media. I don't believe there's any reason for foreign residents to return to their home countries, especially in places like Tokyo and Yokohama.

Despite what CNN says, the nuclear plant is NOT going to be another Chernobyl. People in the USA seem to be panicking more than people here in Japan.

Mar 14, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Tohoku Disaster [How can I help?]

If you're in Japan, another way to help is to send food and supplies to Japan's Second Harvest. Here's the link explaining what they need and where to send it:
http://www.2hj.org/index.php/news/sen...

Mar 14, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Dinner party seating conundrum

I suppose it is at Japanese-style restaurants and the like. Most homes have a kitchen table and chairs. Plus, all of my guests were American/Australian.

Mar 13, 2011
Japanecdote in Not About Food

Tohoku Disaster [How can I help?]

As in any disaster, a good way to help out is to give blood. Foreign residents should be able to give blood, aside from those who are ineligible due to things like travel, recent tattoos/piercings, and that kind of thing.

Hope all the Japan chowhounds are okay.

Mar 13, 2011
Japanecdote in Japan

Dinner party seating conundrum

Well, of course you can all feel free to keep discussing, but the dinner party was a success and great fun.
Although I live in Japan (in a safe area far from the quakes and tsunamis) we had a nice evening, reveling in friends and food and simply being able to enjoy these things when we could have easily been in a very different situation.

I had a couple of people who RSVP'd no who showed up anyway, so fitting everyone at the table wasn't even an option. I put two tables together with all the chairs I had, then had a group sit around the coffee table in the adjoining living room. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, the conversation moved easily between the two rooms, and there were no spills or food disasters.

Thanks for all the advice, I'll certainly keep it in mind for future get-togethers!

Mar 13, 2011
Japanecdote in Not About Food

BUT WAIT!!!! Call now and we'll send you.......... Real-life experiences buying stuff from infomercials

"Everyone's laughing, and riding, and cornholing except Buster."

Mar 10, 2011
Japanecdote in Not About Food

Dinner party seating conundrum

Tonight I'm having a few friends over for a dinner party. We're all good friends (plus one good friend's mom) and so it's quite casual.

So here's my problem - there are 9 people coming over, and I have two seating options in my small-ish apartment. I can put my computer table up against the kitchen table and use all kind of mis-matched chairs to seat everyone. I've done this before with the same amount of people, and while it's certainly nice to eat on a table, it's very cramped and there's not a lot of elbow room. Plus usually I run out of tall-enough chairs and someone has to sit on a stool and be shorter than everyone else.

Option 2 is to just have everyone eat in my living room on the floor or on the couch. I have a large coffee table that 5 or 6 people could eat at comfortably, plus a couch for two.

We're having chicken parmesan, so it's not exactly a finger food. Since we're all friends it's not a big deal, and it doesn't have to be fancy at all, but I'd love to hear any opinions on which is preferable - cramped seating at a table or relaxed seating on the floor?

Mar 10, 2011
Japanecdote in Not About Food