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Japanese Farm Food

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  529 Ratings  ·  45 Reviews
Japanese Farm Food  offers a unique look into life on a Japanese farm through 165 simple, clear-flavored recipes along with personal stories and over 350 stunning photographs. It is a book about love, community, and life in rural Japan. Nancy Singleton Hachisu's second book, Preserving the Japanese Way, takes a deeper look into the techniques, recipes, and local producers ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published September 4th 2012 by Andrews McMeel Publishing (first published January 1st 2012)
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Feb 03, 2014 rated it it was ok
I found this book to have some interesting recipes, but if your aim is to read all of it, it gets repetitive fast. Besides, it is as pretentious as it gets. If you read a book like this you are likely a local-organic-obscure ingredient fan or are at least used to them. However, phrases like this one try even the most understanding of us: "My gentle hands tossed Suka-san’s butter lettuce leaves with a few tendrils of shiso chiffonade as I drizzled in a bit of my Japanese organic rapeseed oil, loc ...more
Mar 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks, 2013
I really want to give this 3.5 stars. This is a tough one for me to review, because it was SO well received by EVERYONE. And I genuinely thought the photography was gorgeous, the stories were lovely, and that the recipes seem unusual and delicious. However, I really felt that this book was written with a certain reader in mind (foodie/japanophile with decent access to obscure/pricey ingredients), and even though I am pretty much that reader and I appreciated so much of the content, I found mysel ...more
Feb 25, 2015 rated it liked it
Though ostensibly a cookbook, it is really more of a lifestyle biography, both interesting and irritating for that very reason. Interesting for the context of an American living an experiment in which she, together with her Japanese husband, aims to revive the waning traditions of a foreign culture. Irritating because her tone often veers into pretension. She judges Japanese people who don't eat local and have forsaken old traditions (fools who have jobs that don't involve just faffing about on ...more
Aug 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Wow! Here is one of those books that helps cheer up the sometimes sceptical professional reviewer who sees so many books that are a theme on a theme on a theme on a theme… Beautiful photography, a privileged insight into a still relatively closed culture, many recipes that utilise great ingredients and the chance to attempt to replicate these at home. What more might you want?
Here in this thick book that could double as a sturdy chopping board if it would not be sacrilege, the reader is given a
Eustacia Tan
Jun 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Now that I have to find my own meals, I realised that cooking isn't as easy as it seems. But it's also quite fun. So, when I saw this book on NetGalley, I jumped at the chance to find a way to cook more Japanese food.

And wow, I would really buy this book. Next year. When I have a better kitchen (maybe with an oven?) and the ability to get a part-time job because ingredients are expensive (ever since I started buying meat to cook, my grocery bills have shot up).

But nonetheless, I took a lot of no
Stephanie Weaver
Feb 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wow... far more than a cookbook... this is a diary, travelogue, love letter... and a work of art. One of the most beautiful books/cookbooks I have ever seen.
Sep 06, 2012 rated it it was ok
I don't generally read books about food, but the description of this from some forgotten internet review made it seem like something I'd enjoy--life on a Japanese farm. With food. When I read the review, the author was listed just as Nancy Hachisu, so I thought that the author was at least partially Asian, and not fully Caucasian; I don't know if this actually makes a difference, but this book is definitely geared towards a Western/mainland US audience, and I couldn't really "see" through the au ...more
Dec 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Purchased this book in 2013. I used this book as a guide to plan my garden; the resource section is great. I do not regularly reference this book as the techniques are easy to incorporate in to your kitchen routine, which I appreciate. The photography and design is excellent!
May 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: japan, cookbooks
I love the simplicity and clean taste of the recipes in this book. While there are some ingredients that may be difficult to find if you live outside of a major city, those ingredients are mostly produce and so can be replaced with similar vegetables. All the condiments mentioned can be found at most normal well-stocked supermarkets or at your local Asian market (or on Amazon). Once you have the basics (soy sauce, mirin, rice vinegar, konbu amd katsuobushi [or dashi powder]) you can make almost ...more
May 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
I'm a huge fan of Asian kitchen -especially love Japanese foods- so when I saw Japanese Farm Food I immediately wanted to check it out. Thanks to Netgalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing I was able to get it as an advanced copy.

I have a great time with this book and even tried out two recipes (Japanese potato salad page, dashi maki tamago) Both were great success and I'll definitely going to make them again.

I don't like recipe books that contain only recipes. I like to know a little about the che
Bossy Acres
Nov 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Truly sublime food writing tends to incorporate numerous elements, from practical preparation tips to graceful ingredient description to memories and historical detail. In her sumptuous exploration of Japanese dishes, Nancy Singleton Hachisu expertly blends all of these, creating a memorable collection that will appeal not just to cooks but also to anyone who appreciates a simple, lovingly prepared meal.

The bulk of the book involves recipes, but Hachisu provides much more than a conventional coo
D.L. Warner
Apr 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This isn't merely a cookbook. It is a memoir and a handbook on a way of life. Japanese food is far more than sushi. Even tofu is more complex than we understand in the west. Think you know all about ramen noodles from those cheap packages that cook in five minutes? Think again! Nancy Singleton Hachisu explores all of these seemingly familiar foods and makes them come stunningly alive. All of the prose is sensually written. The recipes make this sometimes complex food completely accessible. I now ...more
Jun 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: e-books, arcs, non-fiction
Chi mi conosce sa che non sono tipo da libri di cucina: e infatti questo volume, con la sua commistione di ricette legate a una tradizione antica e legata alla terra e di sbirciate nella vita particolare e ricchissima dell'autrice si è rivelato molto più di un elenco di ricette (che pure ci sono, e sono state devotamente appuntate).

Si è rivelato un viaggio nella campagna e nelle tradizioni di un Giappone che mi era pressochè sconosciuto, nonostente il mio ventennale amore per questo Paese, e l'e
Apr 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. This is a very beautiful book, but the ink smells bad, which was off-putting. That may seem like a small thing to mention, but a cookbook should be thoroughly appetizing. Part of this book is the author's stories of moving and acculturating to Japan after marrying a Japanese farmer. She goes out of her way to find local experts who told her authentic ways to make traditional recipes. I'm not sure how many of those recipes I will try, but it was interesting to read about what Japanese ...more
Jan 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
the photos alone are worth looking at this book. The author is from California but married into a family of Japanese farmers and now lives on an absolutely beautiful farm in Japan. The photos of the house, grounds, vegetation are so lush and stunning. She is isolated but gets to travel to the city and back home. The juxtaposition of farm life and travel is enviable in a good way. Her Japanese farmhouse, complete with extended family, is simple but in the most generous and peaceable way. This boo ...more
Myra Leysorek
Jan 25, 2016 rated it liked it
I enjoyed the commentary alongside the recipes, and the photos, although I wished the photos had captions. It's interesting to read about an American transplanted to Japanese farm, and the cooking techniques, foods, recipes were generally simple. The author repeats too often that it's important to use the best ingredients, and sometimes it's frustrating to keep reading that. In Japan it's easier to search out locally made tofu, or miso, or the best tasting canola oil, but I think that's more dif ...more
Jan 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a beautiful look at a type of Japanese cuisine and an approach to preparing it that most of us in the West probably will never experience. As such it's a great journey, well illustrated and with easy to follow, step-by-step instructions. The flipside is that many if not most of us may simply not live somewhere with access to the ingredients necessary to make these dishes properly, and if there's any fault in the book it's the lack of suggestions for substitutions on ingredients, equipmen ...more
Mar 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
By far the best variety of traditional Japanese recipes all in one book that I have ever come across making this a must own cookbook. This book is a humble reminder that we must not forget where our food comes from and how important it is to take care of the land around us. Going from the hustle and bustle of California to rural Japan had to take a huge leap of faith. That leap lead to a collection of stories and recipes that are an inspiration for all of us who strive to eat and live better.
Jun 21, 2013 rated it it was ok
I just received the book this week because of all the recommendations I have seen. So far, I'm not sure I like it. There aren't enough photographs of the food being prepared or show in a final state. Some of the photos accompanying the dishes have no apparent relation. AS a vegetarian, I am not sure this book is suitable. It might be been better if she had divided the book up between memoir and recipes. So far this has two stars from me. For now, it is a two star rating. Once I make a few dishes ...more
Feb 25, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: food
An good series of essays on one American woman's expatriate life in rural Japan, although the reading experience was personally very frustrating for two reasons. For medical reasons, I am supposed to avoid cooking with alcohol, which makes the otherwise simple recipes inaccessible. Also, I received the book for Kindle, and the ordeal of reading this book in that format was not worth the effort.

I know these aren't universal critiques, but they seriously hampered my ability to learn and enjoy the
Jan 12, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: cook
This book is incredibly beautiful and evocative, and there are many recipes and methods I am anxious to try.

To me, it is a perfect example of what works well in blogworld needs better editing to succeed as a hardcover book. The stories are aimless and quite repetitive -- fine in a blog or a letter, but I expect more from a book that I would like to keep and reread.

Nonetheless, the photography/layout/subject matter is enticing, and I enjoyed the glimpse into a completely different world--the so
Apr 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I loved Japanese Farm Food for the memoir and for the recipes but I also think the artistry of the pictures, the words and the coloring of the pages was beautifully done. It will have a special place on my cook book shelf but I think it would be a wonderful addition to an art book shelf too. Japan is a complex and yet simple country and I felt that Nancy Singleton Hachisu did a splendid job of describing exactly that through the farm food and her life with her farmer husband. My family loved the ...more
Jul 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
So far it is a fun, breezy read. I am enjoying it more for the descriptions of daily life in rural Japan than for the recipes, which have been fairly simplistic and common sense- for example: "boil soybeans until done, add salt", but to be fair, I'm only 1/2 through the book. The beginning chapters nicely captured the flow of life with the seasons and the ties to Shinto and earlier religions. The author really shines here, and you really do feel as if you are a guest in her old farmhouse watchin ...more
Juli Anna
Jan 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cookbooks
This book did not quite live up to my expectations. The author's style is wordy, sentimental, with many grammatical errors. There are some good reference items (glossaries of Japanese ingredients, descriptions of traditional food prep techniques), but the recipes were overly basic and repetitive. This book could have been half as long if they'd just cut out all the small talk.
Jun 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Beautifully laid out book, simple recipes, a love and appreciation for ingredients and technique. I borrowed this from the library but will be purchasing my own copy to add to my cookbook collection.
Apr 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
I should just buy this book, because the photos are so beautiful, the recipes look so delicious, and the short stories so fun to dip into!

I would have given this 5 stars but i didn't have time to try any of the recipes.
Jan 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Beautiful book that not only gives recipes for the simple farm food of Japan, but a fascinating glimpse into the culture and people. The recipes are very approachable and most of them are quite simple and delicious.
Jun 09, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cookbooks, japan, food
Fantasy cookbook/lifestyle porn about all the delicious things you could eat if you had had the foresight to marry a hot Japanese farmer in the 80s instead of your own boring husband. Also, she's a leader in the slow food movement! And she loves natto! The whole thing is infuriating.
Interesting recipes, and a lot of bio/background about the writer. May not be too practical as a cookbook, though.
Magnolia Didi
Nov 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great recipes. Very complete. The personal stories from the author are touching.
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