Archive | July, 2011

COMPETITION: Free Studio Ghibli DVDs & Arrietty Poster


To celebrate the launch of Studio Ghibli’s brand new film Arrietty, Japan Centre have a handful of classic Studio Ghibli DVDs and a cute Arrietty poster that we want to give away to one of you guys because we love you so much! :)

Arrietty is a beautifully enchanting animation, based on the story of the Borrowers by Mary Norton which is due to be released in UK cinemas on Friday 29th July. It is the story of 14 year old adventurous Arrietty, who despite being warned by her family to never let humans see her, is determined to explore the world beyond the floorboards of a sprawling mansion, set in the magical and overgrown garden in the suburbs of Tokyo. When Arrietty is discovered by Sho, the young boy who has moved into the house to live with his Aunt, she discovers that some humans can be trusted, and before long a friendship begins to blossom…

How Do I Enter The Competition?

Like our previous competitions, simply head on over to our facebook page and leave a comment on the competition post. We will choose a random entry from everyone who commented and announce the winner on the evening of Friday 29th July. Oh, by the way, the more interesting your comment is, the more likely it is that the random number generator may smile in your direction! :p

What Can I Win?

Our competition winner will receive a cute poster for the new Studio Ghibli film Arrietty PLUS Ponyo, Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle on DVD which we will send out to you in the post next week.

Good luck everyone and watch out for more Japan Centre competitions coming soon.

Manga Drawings From London Students


I want to show you some drawings of Japanese manga. Unfortunately, they are too good to be the work of my own hand, but rather they are the top pick from a selection of students from Evelyn Grace Academy, a school in Brixton, South London.

Read on for loads more drawings!

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Under the Sea: An Introduction to Japanese Seaweed


Seaweed can come in many forms and are particularly popular as a food source in coastal countries such as Japan, where seaweed has been eaten for thousands of years. Wakame, konbu, nori… there are many different types of Japanese seaweed that are delicious and healthy, but what are the differences and which ones should you use when cooking Japanese food! Japan Centre has the answers… read on for more details.

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COMPETITION: It’s Back! Another Chance for Free Hyper Japan Tickets!


We had such a great response to our last Japan Centre competition for free tickets to Hyper Japan that we decided to run it again with another pair of tickets up for grabs for a lucky winner!

Hyper Japan is being held at the Olympia in West London from the 22nd to 24th of July and will be the biggest J-culture event of the year. There will be loads of cool things to watch, listen to and snack on, as well as music performances by Kanon Wakeshima!

We have a pair of tickets to see the event on Saturday 23rd July. Same rules as last time, simply head over to our facebook page and leave a comment under the post for this competition. We will choose a winner on Friday 15th July and send you a message over the weekend to let you know if you have won!

If you enter the competition, please make sure that you will be available on the 23rd July to attend the Hyper Japan event in London. If you are chosen as the winner of the tickets, please confirm that you are able to attend the event within 48 hours of receiving the private message. This is to make sure we have enough time to arrange the tickets in your name.

Any questions about this Japan Centre competition, please ask in the comments on our facebook page.

Midsummer Offers at Umai All This Month!


Umai Midsummer Offers! 11th Jul – 7th August

UPDATE: Our Midsummer Offer for nigiri sushi at umai has proved to be hugely popular so we are giving you a whole extra week to get the best deals on the tastiest sushi as well as your don dishes all week from the 19th to 22nd of July.

Whether you are a fan of our huge range of sushi, or prefer a traditional Japanese style bento lunch, Umai at Japan Centre has a great new offer every week for the next four weeks so you can enjoy your favourite Japanese food at even better value.

Simply pop into Japan Centre from today and start to take advantage of this fantastic opportunity. This week starts with up to 17% off all nigiri sushi including our favourite, fresh organic salmon nigiri sushi.

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Get FREE Postage When You Spend Over £20 Until Sunday!


Please note that the delivery charge will still be displayed during the checkout stage, but we will remove the delivery cost before taking the payment when your order is ready to be sent out.

With free delivery on Japan Centre UK orders over £20, now is the perfect time to grab some delicious Japanese food, relax with a tasty bowl of ramen and slurp down an ice cold Asahi!

This great offer is valid all the way to midnight on Sunday so is a great time to stock up on all those kitchen cupboard essentials like rice, soy sauce, cooking sake and Japanese snacks.

Read on for the conditions of this great offer!

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What is Dashi Stock and How to Make it


Dashi this, dashi that… if you are interested in Japanese cooking, dashi is one of those keywords that pops up in nearly every recipe. In this Japan Centre feature post, I am going to explain exactly what dashi is, how it can be used to enhance your cooking and most importantly, how to make your own dashi!

What is Dashi?

Dashi is a flavouring stock used in Japanese cuisine, giving that quintessential Japanese flavour to your favourite foods. It all starts with something called “umami”, which when translated from Japanese to English, “savoury” is probably the closest word. Umami was discovered as one of the five senses to accompany sweet, sour, bitter and salty and is a more friendly name for the taste of glutamates. Our tongues are quite partial to umami flavours which is why strong, intensly flavoured foods, especially when paired together can give an even more intense flavour. Ever tried cheese and marmite, or parmesan on tomato sauce? Oh yes, those are certainly foods that taste even better when you combine them together!

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