The very beginning of this Aiba Manabu (相葉マナブ) was a bit ominous:

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 000

Oh, no – don’t tell me it’s all food again!?

But wait . . .

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 001 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 002

. . . 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.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 003

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.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 004

The first specialist teaches them about eggs.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 005 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 006

I think this might be the most disengaged screencap I’ve gotten of Aiba-kun in the entire run of the series so far:

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 007

But don’t worry, that’s not indicative of the show in general – he’s his usual effervescent self.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 008

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!

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0092013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 010

I didn’t understand many of the practical ideas presented . . .

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0122013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0132013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0142013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 015

. . . nor why they were testing whether an egg could float (to check whether it was a witch?) . . .

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 017 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 018

. . . but it was all very quick and amusing to watch.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0192013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0212013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0232013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 024

There are apparently two varieties/categories of tamagoyaki – sweet and not sweet – and different parts of Japan have different types:

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0252013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 026

They guys go on the road (location shoot!) to check out what sort of frying pans why need to use to make tamagoyaki.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0272013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 028

Got to handle it to them – they’re investigating every angle of how to make this food.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 029 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 030 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0312013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 032

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.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 033 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 034

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.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0352013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 036

The next topic was whether they should use brown eggs or white eggs. Now, I know that they just come from different colored chicken . . .

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 037 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 038

. . . but are there some other differences that need to be considered in terms of this dish?

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 039

These two eggs sure look different.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 042

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:

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0402013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 044

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.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 045

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).

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 048 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 049 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 050

The goal is a very intricate, and looks really difficult to make:

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 054

At least they have some good syrup for it if Aiba-kun manages to get it right.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0552013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 056

If you think Aiba-kun is going to get this perfect on the first try . . .

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0592013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0602013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0612013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 062

. . . I don’t think you’ve ever dealt with the tricky combination of eggs and a frying pan.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 064

But can he at least get it to the point where it’s edible?

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0652013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 066

Trying to cook must have been especially hard with the other two constantly shouting.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 067

He was doing pretty good, but suddenly things began to fall apart.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 069 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 0702013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 075

Still, he managed to save it. Turns out that the wooden implement they had purchased is a serving tray for the roll.

2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 076 2013.10.06 Aiba Manabu 077

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.