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Dining with the Chef

Latest Episodes

The theme in this episode is sakura shrimp. These clear pink shrimp can only be caught in fall and winter, off the coast of Yui, Shizuoka in the Suruga Bay, making them a rare treat. The host and chef will meet the third-generation chef of a seafood restaurant in Yui that boasts 65 years of history, and he'll show a number of dishes made using these unique shrimp. In particular, they'll learn about sakura shrimp kaki-age, made with the lightest batter possible to give it a light, crisp crunch, while letting the sakura shrimp's natural sweetness and color shine through.

The theme for this episode is kabayaki grilled unagi eel. The traditions of this Japanese favorite will be introduced, starting with the chef cutting up the eel while it's still alive, then putting the meat on skewers, dipping it in a soy sauce-based sauce, then grilling it until it's perfectly browned and delicious. On this episode, they visit a long-established unagi eel restaurant, where they learn about the impressively complex world of working with unagi eel, and they find out what their saying "three years for skewering, eight years for cutting up, and a lifetime for grilling" means.

The theme this episode is kabayaki grilled unagi eel. Chef Saito and Yu Hayami introduce viewers to the traditions of this Japanese favorite, starting with the chef filleting, deboning and butterflying the fish, then putting the meat on skewers, dipping it in a soy sauce-based sauce, and then grilling it until it's perfectly browned and delicious.

The theme om this episode is seared bonito tuna. The chef and host will learn about Kochi Prefecture, located on the Pacific coast and positively overflowing with outstanding seafood for famously delicious seared bonito tuna. These fresh and wonderfully fatty tuna are caught with rods and lines, and then briefly grilled to a sear over a straw fire, sealing in the delicious wild tuna flavor that makes this such a popular local dish. They'll learn from the head chef of one of Kochi's most famous high-class restaurants which has been in operation for centuries.

The theme this episode is cooking with the su-mikan fruits of Kochi. Kochi is not only a major producer of yuzu, a su-mikan fruit that has garnered attention worldwide of late, but with its plentiful sunlight and clean, pure water Kochi is a veritable agricultural treasure trove. These su-mikan fruits, such as yuzu, are known as su-mikan in Japanese, and encompass a huge member of fruits such as bushukan, naoshichi, and hanayu.

The first of two episodes include an introduction of Osechi-ryori, the special cooking for celebrating the new year in Japan. The episode will focus on zoni soup and kurikinton, two of the many different Osechi-ryori dishes. Using a carefully prepared and richly flavorful dashi stock as a base, daikon radish and carrot cut into auspicious turtle and crane shapes to pray for a long life, will be added, as well as other ingredients for a colorful dish full of good luck for the new year. Viewers will learn about regional zoni variations like different dashi or differently-shaped mocha.

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