June 17, 2009

First Crop of Shiso (Perilla) This Season/今年初めてのシソの収穫

I have two shiso (perilla or beefsteak plant) plants in a single planter box in my yard. Two is enough for my family of four.

This morning, I harvested some leaves for the first time this season.

They were shredded and went into my natto!

Sorry for natto haters!
I want to use shiso when I have temaki zushi (hand-rolled sushi) in the near future.


Nancy Heller said...

Why is it called "Beefsteak Plant"?

Nerd Mom said...

Is there a flavor difference between the green and red shiso?

My grandmother used to grow red shiso in her backyard in Southern California, and she used to have me "harvest" it for her. Shiso seems to really like the Southern California weather.

Hiroyuki said...

Nancy Heller: Are you asking me?? That's what I want to know! Any associations with cattle, cows, pasture, etc.?

Cheryl: Yes, there is, and they have different uses. Green shio is often used as a garnish for sashimi, together with shredded daikon, and is usually eaten fresh. Red shiso is used to color ume in umeboshi production. Red shiso furikake (product name: Yukari) is very popular. (Green shiso furikake (product name: Kaori) is not so good, in my opinion.) Red shiso can also be used to make red shiso drinks ("akajiso juice" in Japanese).