The other day I took the Tonkatsu Curry (fried pork chop and curry) class at Tokyo Kitchen in Asakusa. One of my personal goals, this year is to learn how to cook Japanese food properly. To find the right school for me I tried out Tokyo Kitchen. You can also read about my experience at Buddha Bellies Cooking School. Hope you enjoy my adventure and find the information helpful. If you have a class or school to recommend, please let me know. Itadakimasu! Lauren
Tokyo Kitchen Japanese Cooking Class
Yoshimi, owner and sensei, met me in front of the Kaninari -Mon (big red gate) at Senso-ji (Senso Temple) in Asakusa. She was easy to spot dressed elegantly in a kimono. We walked about 3-5 mins to her cooking studio on the Sumida River. I think Yoshimi gets the award for best cooking class view. The view must be gorgeous when the cherry blossoms are in bloom. The cooking studio is comprised of two rooms a kitchen and dining room that are newly renovated, bright and well equipped. The place is spotless since Yoshimi just started her business in August 2014. I was the only student for my lesson that was great for me (maybe not good for Yoshimi). Yoshimi began the lesson by teaching me about the basics of Japanese seasonings and flavours, table manner and an overview what and how we were going to cook. You can tell Yoshimi’s background is in consumer products purchasing and marketing because her printed materials and explanations are excellent.
The main dish was Katsu-curry, but I also learned three side dishes. Love all of them, as my family did as well. The side dishes included 1. blanched spinach with sesame dressing, 2. tofu with tomato, ginger and onion topping and 3. potato miso soup. That meant we needed to actually cook curry, rice, katsu (pork cutlet) and three side dishes! Despite the diversity of dishes, Yoshimi was able to walk me through each step of each dish quite well. I have since reproduced this menu twice at home with good reviews from my tribe. I also learned some tricks of the trade such adding garlic or a piece of chocolate to curry, draining tofu for 30 mins before making salad and chopping katsu, not slicing. After cooking, we sat down together and enjoyed a wonderful lunch with hot tea and green tea ice-cream.
I really enjoyed my lesson with Yoshimi and think she will build a great business for herself. All she needs is more students. Support this young mother who is trying to make her dream come true!
Tokyo Kitchen also has special menus for private lessons, offers a 1/2 day cooking and 1/2 day tour in Asakusa, and offers a Kimono dressing class for women!
Differentiators: Beautiful view of Sumida river, the wide variety of classes, instruction into flavours and manners, very useful recipe cards to take home, and received a gift of drink coasters.
Possible improvements: Needed to stand the entire lesson (ok, for me but not everyone). Kitchen areas may be a bit tight for more than four people, but additional dining area could be used. Pricing might need to be adjusted per menu (all the same set price now).
Repeated the recipes at home with good results!
Tokyo Kitchen Cooking School Details
Address: Ayumi building 502, 1-11-1 Hanakawado, Taito-ku, Tokyo
Email contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Classes offered: 11 classes offered: 1. sushi roll, 2. decorative sushi roll class, 3.karaage (Japanese deep fried chicken), 4. obento, 5. katsu-curry (friend pork cutlet with curry) 6. okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake), 7. soborodon (rice bowl topped with pork and egg), 8. tempura, 9. Oyako don (rice bowl topped with chicken and egg), 10. Omurice (rice omelette), 11. Nikujaga – Braised beef and potatoes
Class times: Most lessons start at 10:00 a.m. and between 12:30-13:00
Cost: The cost of all classes is 7,560 yen (tax included) for a 2.5-3.0 hour class.
Access: Asakusa Station on the Ginza Subway Line, Asakusa Subway Line and Tobu Railways
About the Instructor ( contents below from the Tokyo Kitchen website)
Hello, my name is Yoshimi Daido.I was born and raised in a normal Japanese family. I started cooking when I was 12 to satisfy my own curiosity and also to help my parents. Ever since, my passion has been cooking. I have been cooking for over 25 years now and hope to continue cooking for many, many years to come.Whenever I visit a foreign country, I always drop by local supermarkets or grocery stores to see the local ingredients and food culture. It’s such a fun for me to find out what the local cook and eat in their daily life. I love to cook, eat and above all, I enjoy sharing time with the people I dine with. I hope to share the joy of cooking (and eating !) with you too! I am very much looking foward to welcoming you to TOKYO KITCHEN so we can have some fun and cook up a storm!
Tokyo Kitchen Japanese Cooking Class, Asakusa
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