First I want to tell you about the amazing feeling of going though the most beautiful garden of Kyoto. You think you're breathing the smoothest and clearest air on earth, and not only because there's so much moisture. In addition, in many corners you find no-smoking signs. And everybody follows the rules! I really can't imagine this in any other country. I give you some impressions by the following photos of Kyoto Ginkaku-ji Temple with its breathtaking Japanese Zen garden.
As you can see the main part is green and mossy (because these gardens are unbelievably old), but there are also some parts held with gravel like in these special Japanese gravel gardens. I even found some beetle cuties in shimmering red and in the tourist shop my favorite Japanese painting motive on cotton: Hokusai - The Great Wave off Kanagawa (Kanagawa Oki Nami Ura)!
Further, I've never dreamt of Japanese kitchen being so different from my imagination of sushi, mizo soup and tofu. First of all I was so glad to see my dear friend that was an exchange student in our former class once! The reason we met this early (on day 3!) was that we were invited by her father for dinner - which is a really amazingly big honor in Japan and we appreciated this so much. It was an incredibly nice evening with our both families, 9 people. I'll make a list of our dinner-courfor you.
- First course: We got some kind of bento filled with seven cold nibbles. In the small porcellain bowl you see vinegar seagrasses with some decoration. On the right, yes, there's a snail (that I tried the first time in my life and it was quite surprising but maybe it takes another few years until I eat my second one). Left bottom there's a noodle-sushi, on its right some sake (tuna) and to its right konnyaku made of imo (potatoes). The yellowish was some tamago (egg) with carrot gelatine with little fish's eggs and in the grass a rice ball.
- Second course: Was the famous rice cake in a fish's egg sauce. Normally you eat it only on very special events like New Year's Eve or weddings because it is very hard work to make. (How to make Rice Cake, Mochi)
- Third course: I liked this course the most. It was some sort of sashimi plate.
- Fourth course: A hot bowl with some soup with black rice cake (again), some fish, a konnyaku-star again, a green bean and a idunnuwhat...
- Fifth course: Another hot bowl filled with tasty vegetables, spicy tomato and fish in a soup.
- Sixth course: In the glass bowl some eggplants and asparagus in an (unfortunately) idunnuwhat.
- Seventh course: In the porcellain bowl, already destroyed in the picture, was a crispy rice ball with fish crumbs in a soup served with pickles.
- Eighth course: Cool tofu-green-tea-foam with sweet red beans - great dessert!
|Sixth, seventh and eighth course|