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I'm looking out my window at a snowy Christmas scene—4" to 5" of new snow and still falling. So when I saw your pictures of palm trees and beaches, I can absolutely understand your craving for Jamaican food.

Question about "suiton." I did a recipe test for of a Hawaiian/Japanese soup.
(look at my blog for Jan. 30, 2008)
I'm wondering if the recipe was closer to those dumplings than to Dango? Or do you have a recipe for suiton? I couldn't find one online.

Donna Hastings

Hi there. I have written before and you may remember that I advised you how to get that roasted chicken skin crispy. I am that Jamaican-born woman living in Frankfurt via NY, Ca and Berlin. I LOVE your blog. Very inspiring and somehow sympathique. I do not prep Japanese food but eat it all the time - today in fact - and enjoyed a blissful holiday in Kyoto and Tokyo about 6 yrs ago where I munched out and even went for a full kaiseki dinner. Ouch in terms of finances!!! But heavenly.

Loved your Jamaica urge b/c I was just thinking of soaking some red beans. Your efforts are so admirable even if I make better spinners. Btw have you tried to use Uncle Ben's long grain rice for the rice 'n peas. I know it's cheating but it works!! I once had a horrible experience in Italy making rice and peas with risooto rice but the Italians loved it. They called it Jamaican risotto. I was SOOO annoyed.

We will be moving back to Berlin in the summer (my place in the sun) and there are actually a couple of Jamaican restaurants incl. a long-established one in the gay ghetto. They even have fried dumplin, ox-tail, ackkee and saltfish etc. and I am a regular.

Thank you for bringing a bit of sunshine into another expat's life.


PS I ended up in Berlin due to personal choice but Frankfurt has been due to my hubby's career and my sense of compromise. I can get all the ingredients here for everything but it is unfortunately a somewhat soulless place... Glad to be headed back to Berlin!!


When I lived in Ebisu we stumbled on AAla Wi (http://www.bento.com/rev/2280.html), and ate jerk chicken there. I've never been to Jamaica so I don't know how authentic it is, but we enjoyed it!


I was going to suggest Aala Wi, too. It's probably not perfect, but it's a fun little place. The rice and peas used non-sticky rice, for what it's worth. Next time I'm going to try the tofu jerk, just for fun. If nothing else, they have ginger beer, which makes it worth the trip.

I've been in Tokyo for about a year and your blog has been so helful to me. Thanks so much! I'm making my own Japanese-inspired messes here: http://gingersaltpeachlime.blogspot.com/. If you ever consider cooking (or just as important, shopping!) lessons, let us know.




Tess, that recipe is about involved for suiton: most often all you do is mix flour and water to make a thick dough (commonly described as "earlobe texture", whatever that means) and then pinch off little pieces, roll them into balls and drop them in the soup. Some people refrigerate it to firm up the dough, and it's possible to thrown in black sesame, toru or other additions, but it's really just a simple flour dumpling.

Donna, thanks for the comment! Your spinners have got to be better than mine. I hope I get points for effort though. Japanese rice is similar to risotto rice so I feel your pain. As for Uncle Ben's, I doubt I can get that here. Hard to think of Uncle Ben's as exotic, but that's expat life for you!

Suzy and Teri, thank you! I'd never heard of the place but now it's on my list of places to try. I guess Tokyo really does have everything!

And Teri, nice blog! There are so few Japnese food blogs in English so it's great to see a new (or new to me) one.

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