If I were to tell you I cycled between the two places written above I’d be lying.
Today I cycled between the two places written above. It was a tough cycle across a wet plain but when I reached Hakodate I was greeted by the friendliest advanced apology I’ve ever had. I’m so sorry my apartment is a total mess. It really wasn’t, by any standards.
Hiroaki is a student of marine biology at Hokkaido university and today he and his course mates had been studying konbu, a type of thick slimy seaweed. Presumably as they have nothing else to do with it the faculty allow the students to take the seaweed home. Naturally this means party time.
To celebrate our konbu party Hiroaki invited his friends Haruka, Manami, Shota, Yo and Ikuya for a nabe party.
Nabe is essentially a soup where pretty much anything goes. Fish, meat, vegetables all bubbling away in a thin broth which you then dive into with your chopsticks and fish out the bits you fancy. However, a lesser used ingredient of your regular nabe is konbu, the slimy seaweed. And for good, and quite obvious, reason.
I christened the soup neba neba nabe, or slimy soup, as strings of mucus like goo hung from the serving ladle as it hovered over my bowl. The taste was fine but like most student attempts at cooking needed lots if same and pepper to make it taste if anything. And then it tatted if salt and pepper.
As the party guests chipped in their ¥240 a head I felt a pang of nostalgia for my own student days. We ate some ‘experimental’ food back then too, but nothing it seemed would ever end up neba neba. That’s all Japan’s doing.