Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Adventures in Cooking

I faced facts today and decided to start learning to cook here. Mostly, that means learning to turn on appliances appropriately, because really, I know the basics of cooking. Simple stuff, anyway.

When the friendly and helpful staff member here took me to the grocery store to stock up on Friday (was it really Friday?), I got some stir fry looking meat/bean combo. Tonight's the night, I thought, and started exploring the stove. Here's what I saw.
See that window thing on the left and below the stove top? That seems to be a warming oven. And to the right of that is some sort of switch thing. And directions, which I can't read, of course. So you understand the basic problem. I can see the stove, but there's no way to turn the burners on. Well, there's a way, and a whole direction book in Japanese.

But you know what? My basic Japanese intro materials don't handle cooking situations. Nope, they're going to be GREAT if I need to say "This is a chair." But they don't seem to have basics such as "on" or "off" or "hot burner, don't put your hand down." And those are the things I need. I can't figure out how to look up unfamiliar kanji, though I'm sure there's a perfectly logical way. I just don't know it.

Confident that these folks do in fact cook on the cook top, I looked around some more, and lo and behold, the thing on the right flips open to reveal buttons and stuff. It's a good thing stoves and such are basically idiot-proof, because I took several stabs pressing this and that in different orders until, voila, a burner came on!

And so, fed, I'm wondering how complicated the rice cooker is?


  1. Hah! You conquered the stove. And I agree... how complicated can a rice cooker be? Most of them only have one switch. :)

  2. Where have I been? I missed your departure and arrival! (Rushes back to read over the past few posts she missed....)

    This is so exciting, to be able to see this part of the world through your eyes. And not as a tourist, as someone living there for a while, at least.

    Keep the photos and posts coming!

    And congrats on figuring out the stove...

  3. I always enjoy the weirdness of everyday life when I travel. What a great story. I hope the rice cooker is more self-explanatory.

  4. MWAK, I wouldn't say I "conquered" the stove so much as managed to cook dinner on it. :) Anything more complex than turning a burner on and off is still beyond me!

    TBTAM, Thanks :) Come visit and you can figure out all the cooking stuff!

    Susan, Weirdness makes me thing, and that's good! The rice cooker worked out nicely!