food travel

Japan: Haru’s cooking class

Haru’s Cooking Class

One of my most memorable times in Kyoto was Haru’s cooking class.  I learned how to make Dashi (soup stock), Aemono & Kinpira (vegetarian dishes), Tamago (omelet), Kobe beef & Miso soup!  The recipes were simple, but got me started in Japanese cooking.  Taro (the teacher) holds the cooking classes in his home alongside his wife and daughter Haru.


Useful links:

  • Haru’s cooking class:  I took the 7,900 yen class (~$90) which includes the Kobe beef option.
  • His Youtube videos:


Taro took his time giving us some background in Japanese cooking…I really enjoyed having the class in a house setting.


Taro introducing Japanese ingredients to us…here’s burdock root:


Some ingredients on display: bonito flakes, kombu (kelp), soy sauces, mirin.


Printed recipes were provided to take home.


Paying close attention!


Having a good time and taking lots of notes!


Prepping the ingredients:


Everyone has hands on experience!


Learning how to make tamago (Japanese omelet) was one of the best things I’ve learned!  I ended up buying a legit tamago pan before I left Japan! =)


I’d recommend trying Kobe beef in the class, as Taro will prepare the beef (so we don’t screw up a few hundred dollars worth of beef!).  Kobe beef is like Lexus of all beef (only ~3000 cows are of Kobe beef quality each year).  In fact, it’s so exclusive it comes with an official certificate with a tracking number that you can…


…find out the name, parents and entire ancestry of that piece of beef – ONLINE!  Unbelievable!


Kobe beef….amazing glistening!


Plating the kobe beef and vegetables:


Our complete Japanese meal….looks STUNNING, yes? 🙂


Here’s Taro’s daughter Haru…she’s a big bundle of joy…and dont be surprised if you see her running around the kitchen singing Japanese songs and eating candies!


Hungry Cactus’ Verdict: A

Haru’s cooking class in Kyoto covered simple recipes, but the entire experience was extremely memorable.  I especially enjoyed learning how to make dashi (soup stock) and tamago (Japanese omlettes) from scratch.  As for kobe beef — I’m glad I’ve finally tried it, but feel my beef palate prefers beef with a little less fat.  You must try it though, as it’s very unique!  Overall, I’d definitely recommend anyone visiting Kyoto to drop by Haru’s cooking class!  Thanks Taro and family — arigatou gozaimasu!