Sunday, December 15, 2019

airKitchen Cooking Classes in Japan

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One great way to get to know a country better is through food, I mean, not just by eating the food, but also learn how to cook the local dishes. We are thankful to the kind folks from airKitchen for giving us an opportunity to learn to cook homemade dishes from the Japanese local during our trip to Tokyo. airKitchen is an online platform that allows travellers to book authentic cooking classes by the hosts in Japan. After discussing with my family, we decided to try out Homemade Udon and Tempura with Dashi Japanese Omelette class.

The booking of cooking class is very easy. After the booking request was approved by the host, we kept in touch with the host using the messaging function. On the day of the cooking class, our host Ms Masako met us at a train station, and brought us to her cooking studio, which is a small kitchen that looks like a typical Japanese household kitchen.

Together with her friend, they first taught us how to make homemade udon and dashi (soup). We made the udon dough ffrom scratch, this required not just hand power, but also leg power, as we had to step / dance on the dough that was wrapped in plastic bag!

Cutting of udon requires precision and patience. We were told that Tokyo style udon is thin, while Nagoya style is thick. With my clumsy hands, my portion of udon was mainly Nagoya style!

Ms Masako shared with us how to prepare dashi with a twist by adding slices of kelp and yuzu skin. This made the soup very appetising and delicious!

While the udon dough was resting (yes, the dough also needs a rest), we learnt how to make Japanese omelette (tamagoyaki). Ms Masako shared with us that adding brown sugar and miso paste would enhance the flavour.

When the udon was almost ready, we started to make tempura. It was my children's first time deep-frying food! Ms Masako and her friend guided the children, making the process easy and fun.

Yeah! We made our very own homemade udon and tempura for lunch!

While we were enjoying the lunch, Ms Masako wrote our name by Japanese calligraphy on paper fans, while her friend made some snacks by deep-frying the remaining udon and added some cinnamon powder.

Our family truly enjoyed this cooking experience, as Ms Masako and her friend were very encouraging and friendly. No worries if you can't speak Japanese, as Ms Masako is able to communicate in English.

Other than this class, there are other cooking classes like ramen, Japanese sweets (wagashi), sushi and many more around different parts of Japan. In addition to learning how to cook Japanese dishes, the cooking classes also provide good opportunity for the travellers to interact with Japanese locals.

If you are travelling to Japan, do consider taking up a cooking class from airKitchen!

Cooking classes in Tokyo:

Disclaimer: We were invited to attend a cooking class. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions and photos are mine. 

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