Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Asian Market Haul: Kenny Center (Tensuke Market, J-Avenue & Belle's Bread)

It's been a while since my last Asian market haul video, and a bought a mix of Japanese foods and kawaii stuff so I thought it would be fun to post about it!

The best Japanese shopping center in Ohio I know of is Kenny Center in Columbus. To me and Bo it is like a mini-Japan! We make trips there every so often to get ingredients we have trouble finding at other Asian markets.

Kenny Center consists of a Japanese market (Tensuke Market), restaurants (Tensuke Express & Akai Hana), a bakery (Belle's Bread, pictured above) and newly renovated gift shop called J-Avenue (formerly Hana Gifts). If you are in Ohio, I strongly recommend you visit! Be sure to sign up for Tensuke's mailing or text list so you know when the sales are!

Belle's Bread is a delicious Japanese bakery with a mix of fresh baked goods and cakes. It's also a cafe so you can get tasty sandwiches and even green tea lattes! We actually bought our cake for our Rilakkuma/kawaii bridal shower there. I chose a big Tira Misu cake (tastes amazing!!) and topped with a little Rement Rilakkuma.

So back to my most recent trip--first I got some basic things from Tensuke. I needed to pick up ingredients for Takoyaki and Okonomiyaki. We recently got a Takoyaki electric skillet from our wedding gifts so we couldn't wait to try it out. So I got some Japanese mayonnaise (somehow tastes so different than the American kind...), and ao nori (small fine green nori seasoning). I already had the other ingredients at home.

I also needed some more of my favorite soy sauce, Yamasa soy sauce. I've been interested in keeping a close eye on ingredient lists lately, and this soy doesn't have any crazy names and additives. Also it tastes so yummy and definitely has improved the taste of my Japanese dishes. (I recently realized Snapeee has a Yamasa brand page, so I follow them. They post pictures of food you can make with their products.)

I also needed wakame, another kind of seaweed, and it goes well in soups like miso soup. I like it a lot. I also am trying hijiki.

Finally, I spotted a cute kitchen tool that I could not turn down...

...a takoyaki oil spreader--with a cute little octopus on top! *had to buy it* It works really well too.

I then went to J-Avenue. I hadn't been there since the renovation so I was excited to see the new shop. I ended up getting lots of stuff, of course. I'm a little bummed that the kawaii section is smaller and I didn't see Japanese magazines and books like before. But now they have great household items (something I'm really big on) and Japanese beauty products.

For household items, I found a dish rack (you wouldn't believe how much trouble I was having trying to find a normal dish rack that fit my sink), a really cool strainer that lets you both soak and strain (I have seen this on ochikeron's channel before).

I bought some Rilakkuma stuff from the series I'm collecting including Shima Shima and a re-release folder that looks a lot like the 2010 Rainbow Series.

And then I saw Kiiroitori with a pancake, and I couldn't say no!

Bo and I had dinner at Tensuke Express and he also got a bento from Tensuke on our way out. They have a great selection of fresh sushi and Japanese bento! They taste just like Japan.

Let me know if you are in Ohio as well. Also let me know any cool Asian markets near you. When I travel I love to check them out.

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