For Water Boiling 水だき用

The Japanese language is hard. I am reminded of this fact every day. No matter how much I learn, there is always more learn. Speaking, reading comprehension, composition…

I enjoy the challenge of Japanese though, I really do.

This week, on Wednesday, I spent the day at Somemaru’s house. After a day of shamisen lessons, he said he wanted to make nabe (hot pot). He wrote out a list of ingredients and sent me shopping. I could read everything on the list, so no questions asked. I was on my way.

I got to the supermarket and started putting ingredients into my basket one by one, beginning with the vegetables: 1/2 head of hakusai (Chinese cabbage); one bunch of kikuna (garland chrysanthemum — Japanese greens); one tub of shiitake mushrooms; 1/2 daikon radish, the lower half; one bunch of shironegi (leeks).

Next, one tub of kinugoshi (silk-strained) tofu, sliced; one pack of kuzukiri (arrowroot noodles).

Next, raw oysters, two packs.

And finally, 400 grams of thinly sliced pork loin, mizudaki yô

Mizudaki yô? Huh? “For mizudaki?” … “For water daki?” … daki… “burn?” … “boil?” “For water boiling…?” Ugh.

I asked a young part-timer, stocking meat nearby.

MATT: Excuse me. Is this pork loin here mizudaki yô?

PART-TIMER: Mizudaki yô?

MATT: Yes. Mizudaki yô. See, it’s written right here.

PART-TIMER: I’ll be right back, sir.

Off the young man goes, soon to return with an older employee. I pick up the pork loin Somemaru always buys for nabe.

EMPLOYEE: Hi, you’re having nabe right?

MATT: Yes, that’s right.

EMPLOYEE: What you have there is fine.

MATT: This is mizudaki yô?


MATT: Thank you.

I paid for the groceries and hurried back to Somemaru’s. On my way I smiled and thought to myself, if Japanese language is difficult for even Japanese people, I have a LONG way to go.

I promise to always remember my learning experiences, and show compassion to my Japanese language students in the future…

The first entry for “mizudaki” in the Kôjien dictionary (electronic version): Nabe ryôri no isshu (one type of nabe cuisine).




スーパーに着きますと、材料を一つずつ籠に入れ始めました。まずはお野菜:白菜 半切、菊菜 1、しいたけ 1、大根 下半分、白ねぎ 1。

続きまして、絹ごし(切れたやつ) 1、くずきり 1。

次は、かき 2袋。

そして、最後に豚ロース 水だき用 400g

え?水だき用?用=for … For 水だき? 水=water … For water だき?… 焚き?炊き?For water boiling? わっ。

















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