day 5: osaka, japan

17 March 2016
All I did on this particular day was eat and eat and eat. I've reiterated this multiple times on my blog but my favourite cuisine of ALL TIME is Japanese. From the moment I arrived Osaka, I told my family WE NEEDED TO GO TO THE CENTRAL FISH MARKET. I wanted to eat all the fresh raw fish, eat all the raw sea urchin to my heart's content and of course, the kobe beef skewers! Anyway, Chiyomi and I went to the fish market on the 5th day in the morning for breakfast. My parents and sister didn't tag along with me so it was just the 2 of us. 

Its not like your conventional fish market at all, its not wet and it doesn't smell dirty. As soon as I walked in, my senses were overloaded with aromatic scents of barbequed food! Its kinda reminiscent of the usual osaka shopping street actually, but instead of clothes, they're selling food. Hahaha. 

Ok I won't keep you for long!! There are lots of photos to go through. 

Osaka Central Fish Market 

Outside the entrance. This was taken at 10 am. They start operating by 9 am so best to get there early so you can get the freshest produce.


Super succulent fruits

A fish statue erected to fit the occasion lol. 


Pickled vegetables. Chiyomi told me Japanese people eat a LOT of tofu, fish and soy products (like fermented soy bean) and drink tons of tea. 

SEA URCHIN MY 1 TRUE LOVE

WAAAAAAA SO YUMMY

Huge chunks of sliced fish. They were very generous with the sushi portions!! They want you to feel full and properly satisfied.

Strawberries!!! When I was back in KL, these Japanese strawberries went up to RM100+ for a carton but SOOOOO worth it. 



All cuts of wagyu and kobe 

Green coffee beans - unroasted!

FUGUUUUU or blow fish. Fugu's poison is more lethal than cyanide. If prepared wrongly, it can lead to instant death. Only trained and certified chefs can serve and sell fugu sushi + sashimi. I was really keen on trying fugu sashimi because Chiyomi said this particular chef is really famous in Osaka and is always appearing on Japanese tv shows!! 

Live blow fish

Blow fish sashimi. Chiyomi was telling me a story how her Chinese tourists would ask her to try it first before they do!! Hahahaha. But I wasn't really fussed and we tried it at the same time.


Squid


Barbequed king crab and scallops


More barbequed seafood! Chiyomi and I devised a strategy lol, we would walk till the end of the fish market to browse first then walk back and decide what food we want to try. 


So much uni!!! 

Really fresh and creamy too. Didn't taste pungent (they'd usually smell pungent if they're not fresh).



Japanese people really really love tuna or toro. I never used to like it as much as I did with salmon but after this trip, I freaking love toro! Especially toro belly. Legit melts in your mouth hnnnnggggg.

I then finally realised why I never used to like tuna, its because Malaysia and everywhere else only served sub-par toro. 100% cannot contend with the flavours in the toro from Japan. Must be the radioactive waters hahahahah.

Slabs of tuna flesh

Tuna jaw!!! I didn't try this coz I wanted to focus on the raw stuff.

Its chargrilled sprinkled with sesame seeds

Octopus statue

One shop was even selling totoro merchandise!!!! I love Studio Ghibli movies! My favourite is Spirited Away & Grave of The Fireflies (watch and you WILL cry buckets - I promise). I rewatched it in the cinema in Melbourne for the Studio Ghibli showcase and you could literally hear me sobbing hysterically in one of the scenes. But I wasn't alone, there were a few girls who were emotionally uncontrollable with their tears too. Hahahaha. GO WATCH IT NOW.

First plate: tuna slices + shredded tuna on sushi rice!!! I didn't eat the rice it came with because waste of stomach space lol. I wanted to maximise all the sashimis!!!


Unlike Faiz, I don't really like eating raw fish with soy sauce and wasabi. I usually eat it as it is. I feel like once you dip it in something so strong in flavour, you lose the taste of fish. And I love the flavours offish.

Next plate, a tiny bowl of uni. 

YUMMY just on its own. You can have it grilled as well but I opted for the former. 

Raw, creamy and sooooo delectable.

Mochi shop

I haven't eaten much mochi in my life tbh. Its just something that slipped from my mind.

But Chiyomi and I wanted to try the mochi filled with strawberries. So we bought some!!! These were crazzzzzy good as well. The mochi was so soft and pulled apart really easily. It was sweet but not overly. I 

Our fourth treat: raw salmon, tuna, scallops and sea urchin!!!


I TOLD YOU I CAN'T GET ENOUGH

After our 4th plate, we were really full so we bid goodbye to the fish market and walked to nearby Namba area to check out the manga collection in one of the bookstores. 

As a child I used (and still do), read a lot of Archie comics. I have shelves and drawers filled with the comic series. So it wasn't really difficult to shift towards manga, the drawings were a bit more elaborate which was really nice. But I'm currently a sucker for shouju (idealistic love) mangas and the ones I've enjoyed so far are Ao Haru RideL-DKTaiyou No Le and Strobe Edge. They're all completed series so yay!!

I read them using the MangaRock app on my iPhone and iPad so I can bring it around with me everywhere. If you have recommendations pleaseeee hit me up with an email :)

Outside the fish market


On one of the intersecting streets

CHEESEEEE


Furniture shop




I love taking photos in quaint streets that are very Japanese i.e. lots of neon banners!!



We're in Namba

The manga collection..... FMLLLL if only I could read Japanese. I would go on a shopping frenzy *insert cry emoji*

SO MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF MANGAS EVERYWHEREEEE




Famous Japanese comedians


Dorayaki!!! Hahahaha but in shapes of the comedians. This really amused me and I stood here for a while just inspecting them.


Caricatures of people


More food!!



I can't remember where this was taken but I'll just leave this here coz its Osaka hahahahaha.

City


Then we went to Den-Den town!! Lots of electronics and anime merchandise with cosplay etc. 




Sunset

After 4 days of watching people queue up for this, we finally succumbed to the visual pressure and queued. I wanted to see what the fuss was all about.

Mini cheesecake tarts from Pablo

Freshly baked on site

I bought one tray of original mini cheesecake tarts and one chocolate mini cheesecake tarts! 


ok LEGIT best cheesecake of MY LIFEEEEEE. Comparable to Melbourne's Vegie Bar cheesecake but its richer and light at the same time? I don't know lah I think its magic seriously. I tried the larger sizes and they tasted waaaay different and not as yummy so yea if you go, try the mini ones!!

Then Chiyomi brought me to have Osaka's famous okonomiyaki!!! Apart from sushi and sashimi, one of my favourite Japanese dishes is okonomiyaki or pancake prepared 'however you like'. Hahaha. 

They prepare okonomiyaki on your table with whatever fillings you want.


I went for squid and lots of seafood



AND generous slices of cheese because well, cheese.

Bonito flakes sprinkled on top

Stir fried noodles with squid


Then they sprinkled condiments and you can eat it fresh from the grill!!!! Really filling and the size is huge and generous. No need seconds hahaha.

Matcha desserts and snacks I bought! I bought 2 of each coz 1 for me and 1 for Faiz. Hahahaha. Squeeze u, I'm not gonna share.... lol.


That's the 2nd last day in Osaka all wrapped up nicely with lots of food pics! I hope you're salivating and munching on something by the time you've read this or not I've failed dearly as a blogger lol. 

Next and last post for Japan will be for Kyoto! Watch this space :) 

I hope everyone has an awesome day and a great month of March so far!

Lots of love,
Sara
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