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From a mulberry field to an apple orchard and for the future

There are a lots of apple orchards around here but just started about 60 years ago. Before that, a sericulture was flourishing around here, and these apple orchards used to be mulberry fields. I live in my mother’s parent’s house however they used to have silkworms when my mother was young (about 55 years ago) Sometimes an accident happened. My mother seemed to be shocked when her younger brother ate a silkworm without knowing what it was when he was a kid. Farmers used to have silkworms to get cocoons that was a material for silk. Mulberry leaves were fed to silkworms and as a result, there were a lot…

Please come to visit ! Firefly Festival in Tatsuno

2019 June 18th Hi everyone! I’m Asuka from Yokoya farm. I went to the Firefly Festival in Tatsuno(June 15th~June 23rd in 2019) with my family few days ago and it was so wonderful that let me introduce about it today!! Actually it was my birthday when we visited that festival !(^^)! Surprisingly the festival has long history and it started 71 years ago. I didn’t know about it  but I think my parents took me to there when I was a kid,,, It is held during the time when fireflies flashing and there are some food venders and drum performance.    Tatsuno town is 45 min drive or 40 min…

Japanese cuisines are sweet!!??

Hi, I’m Asuka from Yokoya farm. I’ve heard foreign tourists feel Japanese dishes are sweet. I certainly also feel they are sweet and salty. For example, sukiyaki, yakiniku, nimono(simmered food), oyakodon(chicken and egg bowl), gyu-don(beef bowl). Those tastes come from common seasonings in Japan. I’ll introduce some seasonings used for Japanese dishes below. Soy sauce, cooking sake, mirin(sweet cooking sake), sugar. All families in Japan have those seasonings for sure.     I use them every day of course! I’ll introduce them with some of my cooking today. Here is our dinner at one night.  I made kiriboshi daikon (dried strips of radish), simmered pumpkin and pork wrapped vegetable.  …

Let me introduce about Alps Park in Matsumoto

Hi, I’m Asuka from Yokoya farm. Let me introduce about Alps Park near from our farm today. It’s highly recommended for a family with 3 to 10 years old children. (However winter is extremely cold so you should visit spring to autumn) Alps park is located on a hill 20 min by car to north from Matsumoto station. You will see the beautiful view of northern alps and Azumino when you park your car at south gate. There is an observatory.   You will see a big playground after walking through the observatory. Here is occupied by many parents and children play with balls and soap bubbles and play badminton…

Young girls and Hina-matsuri (Doll’s festival)

Hi, I’m Asuka from Shinshu Yokoya farm. I displayed Hina dolls in Zashiki room with my daughter Yui yesterday. In Japan, there is a habit among families with young girls to display Hina dolls in this season. March 3rd is the day of Doll’s festival and we pray for their health and happiness with eating sushi and cakes. Lots of families start to display Hina dolls in the middle of February. We clean up dolls soon after celebrating on March 3rd because it’s said that daughters wouldn’t be able to get married if we clean them up late Around this area, we celebrate with an old calendar so the dolls…

Let me introduce about miso soup.

Let me introduce about miso soup that is essential for Japanese meal table today. Hi,I’m Asuka When you go to a supermarket in Japan, you might be surprised by lots of variation of miso. Here, Nagano prefecture where I live is large production of miso and there are some big miso companies. It’s very easy to make miso soup! Boiling water in a pod, adding dashi and some ingredients in it Putting miso in and getting it melted at the end, and it’s done! (You should put miso at the end because its flavor gets weak when you stew it.) It’s a good idea to get dashi from niboshi or…

The harvest of apples in autumn has begun.

Lately it’s gotten cold at night in Japan. The apple is a delicious season. We began harvesting apples “Akibae”. Next week we will start to harvesting “Shinano Sweet”. Accommodation guests can walk apple orchard that has many big apple in this season! We are also waiting you for apple picking events!

Pickling Plums

In Japan, it’s time to pickle plums in June. Since a long time ago, farmers harvest plums in their backyards and make umeboshi (dried plums), karikari ume(crispy plums), plum juice and plum wine when the season comes. A lot of people even not farmers make umeboshi or plum wine by themselves and plums, bins for pickling plums and sugar candies are lined up in supermarkets when this season comes. There are lots of people make their living by plums, like plum farmers and companies make dried plums or plum wine in Japan. In addition, dried plums and plum juice are preservable for a long time so we can enjoy them…

I made “Hoshigaki ” (dried persimmons)

In autumn in Japan, in the countryside, we make Hoshigaki. I harvested astringent persimmons, peel the skin, tie it to the string and dry for about 2 weeks. It will become very sweet 2 weeks later! Hoshigaki (dried persimmons) are often eaten in the New Year in Japan. We also eat dried persimmons during the winter as a snack.