Thirty different kinds? Just per one day? I was perplexed, I wondered. It was forty years ago, when I heard this information from Japanese housewives. They said that for fixing breakfast, lunch and dinner for their families they usually use thirty vegetables a day. The number thirty will never disappear from my memory. I was so surprised. At first, I didn’t even believe it. I thought they were highly exaggerating. After all, I didn’t even know thirty kinds of vegetables at the time. Raised in communist Czechoslovakia, I knew potatoes, cabbage, carrots, parsley, celery, onions, leeks, garlic, cauliflower and also summer kohlrabi, radishes, tomatoes, cucumber and maybe some pumpkin. Spinach too. Salad. The eggplant was not used then. What else? If I dig in my mind, I may get to twenty, but thirty? And per day? Onions, carrots, parsley, celery and cabbage are widely used in our country – so if we use six or seven vegetables per day, then that’s a lot. Some who eat vegetables to be healthy and thin, eat maybe ten kinds per day. In Japan, for the first few months, I often stood in front of vegetable and fruit stores and loved to watch what they were selling there. And I also enjoyed getting to know the ingredients gradually, how they taste and what can be prepared from them. It was a great vegetable adventure. In Japan, it is said that with each completely new experience, when one tastes new vegetables or fruits or, for example, a new fish or mushroom, one’s life will be extended. Some say seven years, others seven months, and maybe it’s only seven days or seven minutes. It doesn’t matter what seven, but I confess that whenever I ate something completely new for me, it made me happy. The new knowledge enriched me. Because of those experiences I know how tasty is gobo, how tasty is eggplant, how tasty is konnyaku, satoimo, satsumaimo, yamaimo, nagaimo, wakashouga or maybe shoots of mountain fern or many other sprouts. I’ve always been fascinated by what everything can be eaten. I think, that thanks to my Japanese experience, years of good life were given to me.
Thirty. I guess that number still affects me. Whenever I design a menu, I have to suppress my creativity so that I don’t put in too many ingredients. I really enjoy the variety. Now, when I created Miyabi delux autumn box I put in too many Japanese goodies. I call this set Deluxe Aki Awase box reflecting the Aki kaiseki menu, which was on our menu since 21st September. I sent a list of possible meals to the chefs, and it never occurred to me that they might be furious and say I was crazy. That’s exactly what happened. Reply came immediately. Such a box has too many components, they said. It would be work of two chefs for three days, your thirty-five dishes on the list. Crazy you! They were right, it would be a big burden for the kitchen to cook so many different meals. I immediately reassured them that I would reduce the list to fifteen meals. Finally not fifteen but twenty meals came out of it , but I am convinced that it is just right. They form a great composition of flavors, colors and shapes. I do not want to remove a single meal. So be it as it is. Yesterday I arranged the goodies into a box and took pictures on the moss in the Zen garden. Then I carried the box home and together with my husband we opened to the Deluxe box one of the best sake Miyabi no tomo and we had a wonderful feast The box is for two people, but four can be satisfied too, especially when they take rice and misoshiru soup or order our new sushi offer a Sushi Aki Awase set. They can also add to the feast the autumn dessert called hagi made of mochi rice and azuki. These are also new in our offer. I’m really looking forward, like any thoughtful chef, to hear from you how is it and how you like it. I can’t wait to come out with this Deluxe Aki Awase box. This weekend will be available! We will need to know in advance that you are interested in this Aki Awase box – there is need to made an order in advance. We will prepare these boxes only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. All autumn. When the leaves fall to the ground and it will be cold and snowy, I will address you with a different box full of various Japanese goodies but in the winter tuning of Christmas and New Year. Month after month, the gifts of the Earth give us so many opportunities for beautiful experiences.
Maybe I’ve already convinced and lured you to ordering Deluxe Aki Awase box, but you don’t even know what the box contains, except that these are autumn dishes. The central delicacy is yakizakana. The most brilliant fish I can offer is hamachi from Japan prepared like for kaiseki. Hamachi yakizakana has taken the central place in the box. Next to it are four other fish and seafood dishes – aburabozu kakuni, hotate ni wakamepesto, saba shougani and shirosakana datemaki. The meat is represented by roulade of fine minced chicken. Aki Awase contains eleven types of vegetables, two types of mushrooms, nuts, two types of seaweed and also one type of fruit, which beautifully complements the whole composition. Aki Awase is a palette of flavors and colors. Symphony. It will evoke feelings of joy and for some moments you will forget about covid. Even at this hard time there is a lot what is great in the world. Miyabi is here for you!
Itadakimasu! Yours, Miyabi Darja