Warm Up with Yummy Curry at Sushi Restaurants in Roseville, CA this Fall

Alongside sushi and teriyaki, karé (Japanese curry) is one of the most popular dishes in Japanese cuisine. It’s so popular that the book Japanese Soul Cooking by Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat has an entire chapter dedicated to its history and culinary significance among the Japanese culture. The Wall Street Journal recounts the story of this dish and points out that much has changed since the British first introduced curry to Japan more than a hundred years ago.

Frequently made with beef, Japanese curry also comes in pork, lamb, fish and straight-up vegetable versions. Regional examples showcase local produce; recipes invented by naval chefs have even been known to include Cheddar cheese or coffee. Mr. Ono developed a miso curry for his cookbook. It has the red wine and beef of a French stew combined with Japanese items like burdock root, daikon and two types of miso paste, which give it a marvelous, savory intensity and saltiness.

Predictably, karé has also made its way to U.S. menus. Japanese restaurants in Roseville, CA like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar have since given their own spin on the dish. While curry can be served at any time of the year, diners should be more eager to eat karé during the fall months, as this season provides an opportunity for chefs to finally get their hands on fresh batches of carrots, onions, and other vegetables. Mikuni Sushi’s own beef curry recipe, for instance, follows tradition by including these seasonal vegetables, plus an optional serving of breaded pork cutlets (tonkatsu).

Arguably the biggest reason why karé is so popular among the Japanese and the British is that it’s quite a versatile dish. It is said that most Japanese families have their own version of karé, and each recipe uses varying combinations of fruits, vegetables, meat, and sauce. In addition, combining the dish with another food staple is bound to produce great results. For instance, topping karé with tonkatsu results in a tasty katsu-kare, while adding noodles into the mix creates kare-udon or kare-ramen.

Nowadays, even amateur cooks can make their own karé, thanks to curry roux blocks sold in many markets and Japanese grocery stores. Karé is also much easier to cook, as Ono and Salat are quick to point out, since it does not rely on ground nuts and pureed vegetables for thickening. However, the best Japanese restaurants in Roseville can create the most authentic, great tasting karé, given their years of experience and consistent use of seasonal vegetables and spices.

 

(Source: Comforting Japanese Curry Recipes for Fall, The Wall Street Journal, September 24, 2014)

Experience the Sacramento Area Nightlife without Killing Your Diet

What you eat can play a huge role in how healthy your body is. Not surprisingly, the Boston Medical Center says that about 45 million Americans go on a diet each year in an effort to shed excess weight.

Of course, sticking to a diet requires a lot of willpower and discipline, and, unfortunately, your well-laid eating plans may be derailed when your friends or colleagues invite you to dine at one of the many restaurants in Sacramento. But don’t decline the invitation just yet – there are things you can do to make dining out a healthier experience:

Choose Your Restaurant Carefully
Research local eateries and see which of them offer diet-friendly menus. For instance, Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar has a Karui menu which features healthy dishes that are all 500 calories or less. By carefully choosing Sacramento restaurants to visit, you can enjoy scrumptious food without sacrificing your diet.

As You Like It
If the choice of restaurant is not yours to make, Reader’s Digest says that you can ask servers to prepare your food in a healthier manner:

Dining out is no time to be a meek consumer, notes Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) and coauthor of the book Restaurant Confidential. “You need to be an assertive consumer by asking for changes on the menu,” he says. For instance, if an item is fried, ask for it grilled. If it comes with french fries, ask for a side of veggies instead. Ask for a smaller portion of the meat and a larger portion of the salad; for salad instead of coleslaw; baked potato instead of fried. “Just assume you can have the food prepared the way you want it,” says Dr. Jacobson. “Very often, the restaurant will cooperate.”

Pace Yourself
According to experts, it takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain that you’re already full. If you feel like the meal you ordered didn’t quite hit the spot, don’t order seconds right away – give your tummy a chance to send its “satiation signal” first.

So Long, Sodas
You may be watching what you eat, but are you also watching what you drink? Consider this: A single can of cola has about 139 calories, or about 7% of your daily caloric needs. Keep this in mind the next time you eat out, and just go with water.

(Source: 20 Tricks to Eating Healthy While Eating Out, Reader’s Digest)

Good Restaurants in Elk Grove, CA Can Cater to Your Gluten-free Needs

Celiac disease is a digestive and autoimmune disorder that damages the small intestine and interferes with the way the body absorbs nutrients from food. A gluten-free diet is the universally accepted treatment for those who have the disease, although this particular diet choice is also growing in popularity among the rest of the population who don’t suffer from the condition.

 

 

According to a study done by the Mayo Clinic and the National Institutes of Health, about 1 in 141 people in the U.S. have celiac disease. However, many medical and nutritional experts believe that the number of people with undiagnosed gluten sensitivity is potentially much higher. The Celiac Disease Foundation estimates that 2.5 million Americans are undiagnosed and are at risk for long-term health complications.

Millions of people around the world have eliminated gluten from their diets and have reported an elimination of subclinical symptoms of poor health they didn’t even realize they had. Bloating and gas after meals disappearing; brain fog that hit every afternoon suddenly lifting; going from several mild colds each year to zero for years; dramatic improvements in acne conditions without drugs; elimination of migraines; and much more.

Do you plan to go gluten-free?

Going gluten-free is a big transformation, and the road toward completely changing your lifestyle is laden with difficulty. After all, gluten is inherent in a lot of our most common foods—breads, pancakes, muffins, and pasta, to name a few. Fortunately, the path to being gluten-free is made easier thanks in part to the increasing number of gluten-free establishments, especially some popular restaurants in Elk Grove, CA like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar.

Enjoying gluten-free food

If you have the skill to whip up a gloriously delicious gluten-free meal at home, then a little trip to the grocery store will provide you with all the ingredients you need. However, if like most people, you don’t have the time, knowledge, or skills to cook certain dishes, don’t worry. Restaurants in Elk Grove, CA like Mikuni Sushi are ready to serve you with culinary creations that are in line with your gluten-free lifestyle. Take your pick from a variety of healthy, delectable sushi and salad combinations that will surely make you forget you’re following a special diet.

A word to the wise

Some people who choose to be gluten-free, whether for health or personal reasons, tend to miss out on certain essential nutrients. Combat this by supplementing your gluten-free diet with daily multivitamins. With these tips and tricks, you can be well on your way toward having a healthier diet, with notable restaurants like Mikuni Sushi helping you achieve your goals.

(Source: Going gluten-free? Don’t forget your macronutrients, Fox News, Sept. 07, 2014)

One of the Best Restaurants in Sacramento Suggests Something New: A Dinner Party

Dinner parties are a great alternative to dining out. To begin with, the atmosphere is not only more relaxed (the venue is your home, after all); it’s also more intimate, since all the diners are your friends. But what’s a host to do if he or she has no idea where to begin planning a dinner party?

Luckily, there are some resources out there for you. Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, one of the best restaurants in the Sacramento area, offers the following life-hacks that will help you throw a smashing dinner party, even if you’re not exactly Martha Stewart.

Hire a Chef for the Night

If you’re not too handy in the kitchen, you don’t have to settle with serving cheese and crackers for dinner. These days, some renowned Midtown Sacramento restaurants, like Mikuni Sushi, have “rent-a-chef” programs, in which a personal chef will actually go to your home and take over the cooking for you. With this method, you can wow your friends by serving restaurant-quality dishes without breaking a sweat.

Make it a BYOB Affair

Don’t know what drinks to serve? Here’s a simple solution: Let your guests bring their own alcohol! This article from Food52.com even offers a nifty trick for quickly chilling their wine bottles:

First, toss your ice with a handful or two of salt, and distribute it evenly. Place your bottle in whatever vessel you’re using, then dump the ice over it…

Then fill your bucket with cold water, as high as the neck of the bottle, so that it is surrounded by a mixture of salty, ice-filled water.

Why does this work? In order for your wine to cool, heat (energy) needs to move out of the bottle and into its surroundings… Liquid transfers heat more quickly than the pockets of air that sit between ice cubes, which is why water is key here. The salt helps to lower the freezing point of your ice-water mixture… This way, there’s more ice melting in the mixture; melting requires energy, and the closest place to find that energy is your bottle.

Minimize Cleanup

Once your dinner party has – hopefully – gone off without a hitch, you now find yourself confronted with a mountain of dishes that need washing. Fortunately, there are things you can do to minimize cleanup. If you’re intent on serving appetizers, go for food that can be eaten using napkins and toothpicks. No plates and utensils necessary means no dishwashing for you! Also, label your guests’ straws or glasses so they don’t end up using three or four different glasses over the course of the dinner – this tip also works for backyard BBQs featuring plastic utensils and cups, to avoid unnecessary waste.

(Source: How to Chill a Bottle of Wine Faster, Food52.com, June 4, 2014)

Enjoying Sake at Elk Grove Restaurants: It’s All about the Temperature

For sushi purists who frequent Elk Grove restaurants that specialize in Japanese cuisine, selecting the perfectly crafted roll is a main priority. However, the meal isn’t really complete unless it’s being served alongside sake or Japanese beer. On top of that, the manner of serving sake differs slightly with each variety – some sake are best served cold, others warm.

The reason that temperature plays an important role in serving sake comes from the ideal in Japanese food culture that flavors should be simple and distinct from one another. With high quality sake, certain flavors become more evident at different temperature ranges. To experience these flavors, the sake needs to be served at just the right temperature so that each flavor can be properly discerned.

So, at what temperature should you serve which sake? While most brewers will suggest an ideal temperature to serve their sake, it often follows a certain pattern. This was the subject discussed by Noritoshi Kanai, a living legend in the Japanese food world who was responsible for introducing sushi to the West, and who has been anointed by the Japanese emperor as a “Living National Treasure,” in a presentation he delivered in 2010.

Entitled “Sake Temperatures: How Hot Is Too Hot?” he revealed that there are eight temperature ranges at which sake can be enjoyed. Each type of sake should fit into one of these temperature ranges – piping hot not being one of them – and the following general guidelines usually apply:

Fragrant sake like gingo or daigingo: Drink chilled, around 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but don’t drink it cold, which will kill the delicate aroma and taste (like drinking white wine too cold).

Unpasteurized sake (namazake): Drink it a little cooler, in the 41-50 degree range, to bring out its crisp, fresh taste.

Rich sake like junmai or honjozo: These are perfect served room temperature or warm — kan. What is warm? Body temperature (98 degrees) up to 110 degrees. (Perfect with hot pot, by the way.)

If you don’t know the ideal temperature range to serve a specific type of sake, however, Mr. Kanai indicates that you can’t go wrong serving practically any type of sake at room temperature. Also, should you get your hands on truly high-quality sake, temperature becomes less of an issue. Top shelf sake can be enjoyed warm, at room temperature, or chilled – just not too cold, and again, never too hot.

With this in mind, remember that sake served at the right temperature so that the rich aroma and delicious mix of flavors is enhanced is something you can expect from the best restaurant in Elk Grove, CA. Head off to restaurants like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar to enjoy some great sakes.

 

(Source: the right temperature to serve sake: a guide, The Japanese Food Report, February 7, 2010)

One of the Leading Restaurants in Sacramento Offers a Gluten-Free Menu

After a long week at the office, one of the best ways to unwind is by dining out with your colleagues at renowned restaurants in Sacramento. However, some of your co-workers won’t just be scanning the menu for the food; they’ll also be on the lookout for ingredients that contain gluten.

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, and triticale, which helps food made from these grains maintain their shape. Unfortunately, some people suffer from celiac disease, which causes them to experience adverse reactions to gluten. This article from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness’ website offers an overview of this condition:

Celiac disease is an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food. What does this mean? Essentially the body is attacking itself every time a person with celiac consumes gluten.

Celiac disease is triggered by consumption of the protein called gluten, which is found in wheat, barley and rye. When people with celiac disease eat foods containing gluten, their immune system responds by damaging the finger-like villi of the small intestine. When the villi become damaged, the body is unable to absorb nutrients into the bloodstream, which can lead to malnourishment.

Aside from malnutrition, celiac disease can also cause unpleasant symptoms such as bloating, constipation, headaches, and fatigue. Left untreated, it can lead to even more complications, such as the development of osteoporosis, thyroid disease, and other autoimmune diseases.

As such, dining out often causes more dread than pleasure for celiac sufferers as they might inadvertently consume gluten. They might also find themselves going to a restaurant with friends, only to find that there are no gluten-free items they can order.

Fortunately, leading Sacramento restaurants like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar have created special gluten-free menus just for these diners. They can feast on items like sashimi or a variety of healthy and gluten-free sushi rolls. Other options include items like pickled cucumber salad, and teriyaki dishes made with gluten-free sauce.

According to Harvard University, as many as two million Americans have celiac disease, though only about 300,000 of them have been diagnosed conclusively with it. With so many people suffering from celiac disease, it’s reassuring to know that restaurants have begun modifying their menus to accommodate people with this condition.

 

(Source: CELIAC DISEASE, National Foundation for Celiac Awareness)

Japanese Restaurants in Sacramento, CA Embrace Tradition and Invention

The 68th Japanese Food & Culture Bazaar is exactly as it sounds: a celebration of culinary excellence and love for tradition that makes all things Japanese stand out in cosmopolitan California. A Sacramento Bee feature details preparations that transpired at the event, particularly the significant contributions made by the Sacramento Buddhist Church. In the spirit of the Bazaar, it’s not just the young ones who shouldered most of the work:

Tradition has driven the bazaar since its inception, of course. The dishes are prepared from family recipes handed down through generations, and the arts reflect a millennia-old culture. Many of the church member volunteers have been its lifeblood for decades, including some who were there at the start, such as Mitzie Muramoto, 89, and Molly Kimura, 90.

The experience can be roughly summed up as a mix of old and new, which is another thing that has allowed Japanese cuisine to remain fresh and contemporary while retaining its original identity. While ordinary people can create their own sushi and teriyaki recipes, these pale in comparison to the originals made with the knowledge passed down from multiple generations.

For instance, Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, one of the best restaurants in Sacramento, CA, follows suit by providing both traditional and modern incarnations of renowned Japanese dishes (like hamishi and gluten-free teriyaki). The chefs behind such creations know that Japanese cuisine is more intertwined with the culture that created it than most people think.

Traditionally, the Japanese prepared food according to the season. In spring, for example, most of dishes would incorporate bamboo shoots rather than chestnuts, which are abundant during fall. Fish and soy sauce are staples throughout the seasons, though, since the Japanese typically lack meat and dairy in their diet. As demonstrated in the Japanese Food & Culture Bazaar, recipes typically differ from one family to another.

Teriyaki is perhaps the best example because its taste largely hinges on the ingredients that go into the making of the sauce. Teriyaki sauce is typically made from soy sauce, sake, ginger, and sugar. Other variants make use of garlic, honey, and sesame oil. As such, teriyaki dishes served in the best Japanese midtown Sacramento restaurants are bound to have rather unique and tangy flavors. This only goes to show just how Japanese cuisine changes constantly while keeping certain things the same.

 

(Source: Japanese Bazaar is much more than food and arts, The Sacramento Bee, August 3, 2014)