The very beginning of this Aiba Manabu (相葉マナブ) was a bit ominous:
Oh, no – don’t tell me it’s all food again!?
But wait . . .
. . . hmm, it looks like they’ll actually be making the food, and I’m generally favorable to cooking shows (in contrast to eating shows).
There’s no extended VTR at the beginning this time, and we get to Aiba-kun and his two pals Watabe Ken-san and Sawabe Yuu-san.
Their goal is to learn all about tamagoyaki, including how to make it. In other words, this isn’t a generalized chow fest but instead totally focused on a single type of fried egg-based food.
The first specialist teaches them about eggs.
I think this might be the most disengaged screencap I’ve gotten of Aiba-kun in the entire run of the series so far:
But don’t worry, that’s not indicative of the show in general – he’s his usual effervescent self.
We find out all sorts of things. For instance, that Japanese rank second in yearly per capita consumption of eggs (329 per person). Number one was Mexico, at 358, Ukraine was third, China was fourth, and Russia was fifth. Wow, we Americans need to step it up!
I didn’t understand many of the practical ideas presented . . .
. . . nor why they were testing whether an egg could float (to check whether it was a witch?) . . .
. . . but it was all very quick and amusing to watch.
There are apparently two varieties/categories of tamagoyaki – sweet and not sweet – and different parts of Japan have different types:
They guys go on the road (location shoot!) to check out what sort of frying pans why need to use to make tamagoyaki.
Got to handle it to them – they’re investigating every angle of how to make this food.
I loved it when Aiba-kun picked up a pan, saw it was 5810 yen (around $58), said it was too expensive and put it back.
In the end, they got a sieve for 1330 yen, some sort of wooden implement for 1080 yen, and the correct kind of square frying pan for 2570 yen.
The next topic was whether they should use brown eggs or white eggs. Now, I know that they just come from different colored chicken . . .
. . . but are there some other differences that need to be considered in terms of this dish?
These two eggs sure look different.
Actually, I was more interested by the fact that the Japanese don’t get their eggs by the dozen – they seem to come in packs of ten:
How . . . metric.
Anyway, after they got their eggs (they went with the brown ones, but I’m not sure why) at a cost of 10 for 350 yen, they went to the kitchen for the real test.
Aiba-kun is the one who takes care of the cooking – the other two just watch (and smell) as he first uses katsuo bushi to prepare a dashi (broth).
The goal is a very intricate, and looks really difficult to make:
At least they have some good syrup for it if Aiba-kun manages to get it right.
If you think Aiba-kun is going to get this perfect on the first try . . .
. . . I don’t think you’ve ever dealt with the tricky combination of eggs and a frying pan.
But can he at least get it to the point where it’s edible?
Trying to cook must have been especially hard with the other two constantly shouting.
He was doing pretty good, but suddenly things began to fall apart.
Still, he managed to save it. Turns out that the wooden implement they had purchased is a serving tray for the roll.
In the end, there’s not much to say about the episode. It was a straight-up cooking show, so if you want to learn about tamagoyaki and how to make them, this is the show for you. The show had plenty of Aiba action in it, so I think Aiba-kun’s fans will be happy with it.
I don’t think I’ll be making tamagoyaki any time soon, but it was a solid and well-focused episode showing all aspects of the topic, so I’ll give them credit for that.