Everyday Chinese Cookbook – by Katie Chin

In most Asian families, food and cooking are very much central to our lives.  We celebrate many special occasions using food as symbolism. But it’s the everyday cooking that grounds us, giving much comfort.  This post is a book review of Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook, 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen.  Just in …

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The Cultural Perception of Tattoos or Irezumi in Japan

My very limited knowledge of tattoos comes from my experience of growing up in Tokyo.  In Japanese, the word for tattoo is irezumi, 入れ墨。The first two characters together, ire(ru) means, to put in, to place or to insert.  The second, sumi, is ink.  So, it’s the insertion of ink. During the Meiji era, tattoos in …

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If We Remove Shoes in the House, Why Not Add Covers for Wheelchairs?

The Asian custom to remove shoes in the home seems to be gaining momentum throughout the world.  Many of my non-Asian friends are taking off their shoes too.  And why not!  It just makes for a cleaner, healthier home environment.  Plus, your carpets and floors stay cleaner for longer too.  Less mess, less stress – right? …

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Shichigosan: The Japanese Festival for 7, 5, and 3 Year Olds

The Japaneses Shichigosan festival celebrates children who are 7,5, and 3.  The word, Shichigosan is literally a combination of three numbers in Japanese; shichi is seven, go is five and san is three. This makes it pretty easy to remember what this festival is about! The Shichigosan festival, thought to be over 400 years old, is …

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Sogetsu Ikebana and the Fundamental Energy of Plants

Ikebana, the traditional Japanese art of flower arrangement, has a 600 year history.  It began when the practice of offering small flower arrangements to Buddhist shrines were taken out of the religious context.  It originally developed as an art to enjoy nature, bringing flowers into the Japanese home.  Today, in this age of information technology, ikebana …

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9 Reasons to Drink Matcha Green Tea to Kick Start Your Healthy Lifestyle

Green tea is regarded by many nutrition experts as one of the items on any top 10 list of super foods in terms of antioxidant quantity, health benefits or weight loss. In particular is the green tea powder called Matcha – which is made from stone ground natural green tea leaves grown in Japan. But …

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Asian Design, the Star of Casinos Today, Casinos seeking to draw in the Asian affluent with Asian influence

This is a guest post on Asian Design Influence. Casinos have always been known for their extravagance. From the majestic Casino de Monte Carlo in Monaco to the centuries-old Hippodrome Casino in London, many casinos are feats of architectural marvel. And inside these casinos, we see beautiful room and magnificent décor fit for a king. …

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How One Tea Ceremony Taught Me So Much About Appreciation

Seattle’s Sister City in Japan is Kobe, the capital of Hyogo Prefecture.  To deepen the relationship between the two cities, they often have cultural exchanges.  This fall, the Hyogo Japanese Tea Ceremony group visited Seattle to increase cultural awareness.  It consisted of a group of young women who are learning tea ceremony accompanied by their adult mentors. …

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