Today we went to Birmingham hoping to get in to see the Birmingham Back to Backs, but there wasn't an appointment available, so we spent most of the day walking around, having a bento lunch at Mount Fuji, and then shopping for dishes in Chinatown. (It's a very SMALL Chinatown, consisting mainly of one strip mall called the Arcadia and a lot of restaurants. Oh well!) Lunch was very tasty. Derek went mad for the tempura!
I was on a mission to find some little Japanese dishes today and couldn't believe there wasn't one single Japanese shop in the second largest city in England. As a last resort, we went in Sing Fat Chinese Supermarket hoping they would have some dishes--and they did! I was beside myself with glee as I chose several bowls and small dishes. So of course, even though we had Japanese for lunch, I had to make something Japanesey so I could use our new dishes:
Brown rice, miso soup, kampira carrots, veggie fingers (okay, not Japanese! LOL), and cabbage with green onions. In this photo, the dishes are not arranged properly, and I hadn't yet brought out the little dish of sweet thai dipping sauce.
And here are the dishes after the meal, in proper order: rice bowl, soup bowl in front of diner, three side dishes above (in this case they were all on one plate), chopsticks nearest diner with tips pointing to left.
I'm sure I overfilled the plates! I am still stuffed and it's an hour later. Derek and I had fun trying to use chopsticks (o-hashi), but Derek did suffer a minor flip out trying to get the last few grains of rice out of the bottom of his bowl and swore while reaching for a fork. He had a grain of rice stuck to his lip. It was great fun having dinner on proper Japanese dishes! Now I just have to learn not to put as much food on next time (at least for me.)
It's off to the Japan Centre tomorrow--who knows what joys await us there!