06 May 2021

Sozai Cooking Friends

Join us for online Japanese Cooking, Sozai Friends!
Cooking is an enjoyable, friendly and relaxing experience.
SOZAI FRIENDS for the ultimate Japanese cooking experience.

You may be thinking ;

"I like Japanese food, but I'm bored with Takeaway menus..."
"I want to cook nice fresh Washoku but don't know where to start..."
" I struggle to follow written instructions on recipe blogs while cooking..."
"I want to try something different..."
"I want to ask questions to a pro while cooking..."
"Do I have to buy lots of unique ingredients to cook Japanese food? It seems complicated for me..."

If so, come and join Sozai Friends!

About Sozai Friends

Since the COVID-19 lockdown, we have missed so many opportunities to meet current/new friends though cooking and dining. So in Feb 2021, our instructors created an online Japanese cooking group for anyone who loves to eat Japanese food and who would like to cook along in their own comfortable kitchens. Most of the dishes are popular in Japan and relatively simple but tasty. We wish you to make new friends in the Sozai Friends group and have fun cooking together!

1. What are the benefits?
2. How & When is it held / How long is each class?
3. Who can take the class?
4. What do I need to prepare before the class?
5. What are some examples of previous Sozai Friends menus?
6. How much does it cost?
7. Testimonials from Participants.

Q1. What are the benefits?
A: Joining Sozai Friends will give you these benefits achievements;
  • Cheaper than a regular cooking classes, sometimes FREE with  special promotional offer.
  • Enjoy the entertainment of cooking along with your friends and family through the screen.
  • Vegetarian or plant-based/perfect for the busy person.
  • Immediate answers to your questions during class.
  • Learning Washoku food, which you can cook repeatedly.
  • The background of Japanese food and culture while cooking.
  • Make new friends through weekly cooking lessons online.
  • Tips to use local ingredients to cook Japanese food.
  • From authentic to newly popular Japanese recipes taught by Japanese instructors.
  • Repeat more complex procedures by taking you through the process and allowing you to watch the first time around.
**Washoku= Traditional Japanese Cuisine/ dish. This style of cooking has been passed down from generations

Q2. How & When is it held / How long is each class?
A: All online / approx. 60 min.
Most classes are held Tuesday daytime or evening. Are you working weekdays? Don't worry, we have a class at weekends! Getting together with new friendly faces have been a fantastic and fun way to connect weekly!

All the class are held online via Zoom. Classes are approximately 60 min, a little shorter than other standard cooking classes, so even your children won't have enough time to get bored! They are perfect for busy people who want to cook with their own hands.

Q3. Levels / Who can take the class?
A: Easy / Beginners and any other levels.

Sozai Friends Japanese cooking classes bring together people from various ages, backgrounds and cultures. maybe you're interested in cooking but don't know how to get started. Perhaps you've tried cooking before but didn't like the results. Maybe you're just curious about how Japanese foods are prepared and would love to learn more.

The class will start from the basics, like cooking Japanese rice, with more advanced or unique menus. You do not have to be an expert in cooking to give it a try. Our experienced instructor will explain all the essential in English step by step, and you'll learn what you need to do when repeating it yourself at home. Also, we'll create an opening contest around your questions so that find out exactly how a whole bunch of condiments and ingredients come together. Furthermore, our instructor can advice vegetarian or plant-based / free alternative options.

Of course, you can use the cooking class as a reward for somebody who helped you, and after an hour of class, your family can join and help you eat the amazing results!

Q4: What do I need to prepare before the class?
A: Ingredients, cooking equipment, and Zoom link. All the requirements will be informed in advance. Most of the ingredients are available at your local supermarket. Also, we'll advise where to get some unique Japanese ingredients if you would like.

Q5: What are some example of  previous Sozai Friends class menu?
A: Omurice ( omelette with Ketchup fried rice), Temaki sushi, Steamed Bread, Tamagoyaki, Onigirazu, Dashi and Miso soup, Agedashi tofu...and so on. These recipes are famous as Japanese home cooking, tasty but not so complicated to make, simple and easy to repeat.

Also, many Washoku recipes are nutritiously considered and much healthier than ready-made dishes. Furthermore, there is the fundamental category called SHOZIN RYORI = Zen Buddhism vegan Japanese cuisine.

There are so many varieties of vegetarian or low-fat dishes! Not only authentic dishes, but we'll teach modern Japanese or updated category with a hint of Japanese essence in well known menus like Tofu Cheesecake or Matcha Scone.

Q6: How much does it cost?
A: £20 per person per class.
It is slightly cheaper than our regular online cooking class. With this experience, you'll get decent Japanese culinary skills.

As a token of our gratitude, you'll receive a premium coupon if you subscribe to our newsletter. We welcome family or group bookings, and you can also use them as a gift.

All you need to do to book, is to click the class you like and fill is the information though the website. Once the booking is completed, we will send you a confirmation of the booking. On the day before class, we'l' send you a Zoom link as well.

Additionally, we'd love to welcome you and one another household member to this series of free to join, so why not cook together with your family and friends?

Q7: Testimonials from Participants
A: Since Feb to April 2021, we have had more than ten Sozai Friends classes. A total 400 participants have already enjoyed it, and it's getting more popular now.

As you see below, we've received an enormous amount of positive feedback. Not only enjoying cooking along but fun, achievements, good bounds with family and friends!

"I love the relaxed approach -I am really enjoyed all the new Japanese food that I am learning; thank you so much."

"I have done 3 classes with you and enjoyed all them."

"I loved the enthusiasm in the class and the level of interaction."

"Love all the class.Thanks a lot."

"Wonderful classes, excellent instructors. The atmosphere is always friendly and welcoming. I look forward to it and feel engaged with the instructors. I like that are responsive to the chat and encourage us to ask questions. i always learn a lot and feel happy and positive after the class :-) "

"We love your classes as always friendly, informative, simple and tasty foods."

"It's always lovely to attend Sozai courses. All instructors are very excellent and skilful, and I always enjoy learning something new! Thank you!"

"I didn't know much about Japanese cooking before starting the classes, but I enjoyed the food when I visited Japan, so this has been a great way to learn more. I've enjoyed all the classes I've attended and learnt lot abut different meals and dished, but also lots of tips and cooking tricks. The classes are very relaxed, and the instructors are very patient and explain things well, and I've been able to repeat the recipes on my own successfully. I would be interested in learning more about 
any element of Japanese cooking, particularly vegetarian/vegan options."

"It was great fun as we're cooking breakfast together at 7am!
We felt the day had started very special. The tutorial was excellent.Thank you so much"
"An award winner chef's knowledge and baking skills are shared in an easy with delicious results."

"I just wanted to say thank you for hosting the Friends events..my son can be a bit of picky eater but has really enjoyed the cook along we've joined in and has all of the food. It'd been such a joy to see him get involved with cooking and also to less isolated during lockdown, so a big thank you for hosting these!"

"Really tasty end result and easy to adapt to what you have in fridge. Fantastic recipe for quick, mid-week, easy and healthy supper/lunch. I like these classes as it makes me cook some different and finding cooking Japanese food not al all difficult."
πŸ’“See all reviews πŸ’“

Finally, the biggest benefit you get is...making new friends in Sozai Friends! Would you like to join us? Please see upcoming classes and make a booking!

Happy Cooking :)

19 January 2021

"Hi Mr Kikkoman!!" Hyper Japan x Sozai

Three Delicious Recipe Using Soy Sauce 

Kikkoman‘s naturally brewed soy sauce contains just four ingredients – soybeans, wheat, salt and water – and has no artificial additives. The essential cooking sauce and seasoning for everyday dishes.

We are happy to share with HYPER JAPAN fans three different dishes using shoyu, soy sauce. Don’t forget to watch the introduction video which will help to make these easier!

Check here the recipe for: 

How to make Chicken Sukiyaki 


Recipe by Kinu Yukawa 


< Sukiyaki Warishita Sauce >

100ml Kikkoman Soy Sauce

100ml Mirin

3 tbsp Sugar

200ml Water


400g Deboned Chicken Thigh

1 pack Firm Tofu

1 bag Shirataki (Konjac Noodles)

1 Onion

2 Leek

1 cup Mixed Mushrooms

1 cup Watercress

1 small Carrot

  1. Slice the leek, onions and carrots into thick slices.  Cut the chicken thigh bite sizes and tofu into large cubes. Insert incisions on top of the shiitake mushrooms. 

  2. Add the all the ingredient for warishta sauce in a pot and bring it to a boil and set aside. 


  1. Open the shirataki noodles and drain the water.  Place the shirataki noodles in boiling water and parboil them for a few minutes.  Drain and set aside. (ζ˜ εƒγͺし)


  1. Lightly grease a large pan or cast iron pot with vegetable oil.  Add the chicken and onions and pan fry until the surface is lightly browned. 


  1. Then add the warishita sauce to the pan.  Once the sauce starts to boil, add the rest of the ingredients. 


  1. Let it simmer in low heat for a few minutes until the ingredients are cooked through. 

  2. Serve the Sukiyaki hot with cooked rice. 

*If the sauce gets too reduced and thick,  dilute with water. 

Recipe by Akemi Yokoyama


Preparation  3 hours

Cooking        5 minutes        


Serve 2


2 portions of ramen or oriental noodles

80ml shoyu ramen paste

400ml chicken stock



6 slice of char shu pork

2 ramen egg

2 spring onion

4 Tbsp sweetcorn



Prepare the following first:


1. Topping Finely slice the spring onion

2. Topping Cook char shu pork according to the recipe below. Slice thinly to serve.

3. Topping Cook ramen egg according to the recipe below. Cut in half to serve.

4. Topping Sweetcorn

5. Shoyu ramen paste Make shoyu ramen paste according to the recipe below. Divide the paste in the serving bowls.


How to make shoyu ramen


1. Cook noodle according to the package instruction.

2. To make ramen soup, heat the chicken stock to a soft boil. When the noodle is almost ready, pour half of the hot chicken stock to the serving bowl with shoyu ramen paste, mix until the paste is dissolved. Repeat the process to the remaining bowl.

3. Strain the noodle in the sink using a sieve by tossing several times, transfer the noodle immediately to the ramen soup.

4. Add the toppings and serve immediately.




Serves 2

100ml Kikkoman soy sauce 

300g   Pork Belly

50ml Mirin

50ml   Sake

50g  Sugar

150ml   Water

1  Star anise


1. Place a small oven-safe saucepan or a small but deep oven dish in the hob, cook the pork over medium heat. Turning over occasionally for 5 to 6 minutes or until the pork is golden brown all around.    

2. Add the rest of the ingredients, stir to dissolve sugar. Bring to a light boil.

3. Cover with a foil or put a heat resistant lid. Cook in the oven for 2.5 hours. If the pork is not completely submerged under the sauce, turn over the pork several times during the cooking.





Serves 2

20ml  Kikkoman soy sauce

2      Egg

10ml Mirin

5ml   Sugar

1      Ziploc or freezer bag


1. Take out the eggs from the fridge to bring to a room temperature an hour before cooking.

2. Add soy sauce, mirin and sugar in a saucepan, bring to a light boil. Leave to cool.

3. Took make perfect half boiled eggs, carefully place eggs in the boiling water, cook for 6 minutes over medium to high heat.

4. Immediately, cool the eggs under the running tap water, or leave the eggs in the iced water for a minute.

5. Peel the shells with the skin underneath straightaway. Roll the egg on the hard surface to crack the shell all over. The shell should peel easily

6. Place the eggs in a Ziploc bag and pour (2). Remove as much air from the bag, close the zip firmly and leave in the fridge for 3 hours. If the eggs are not properly submerged in the sauce, turn the eggs a few times while storing.





Serves 2


30ml Kikkoman soy sauce

30ml Oyster sauce

10ml Sesame oil

5ml   Rice vinegar

5ml   Salt



1. Make ramen paste by mixing the ingredients, except the chicken stock.

How to make Shoyu Ankake Omurice 


Recipe by Izumi Nakamura


< Fried rice >

1 tbsp Kikkoman soy sauce

10g Butter

200g Cooked rice

50g Chicken  

30g Onion

*Please feel free to adjust the amount of salt & pepper

< Egg Omelet >

1 tbsp Cream / milk

1 tbsp Maple syrup

1 tbsp Vegetable oil to coat the frying pan

1-2 Egg 

*For less sweet taste, please change from Maple syrup to Cooking sake 

< Ankake >  *Asian thick sauce 

1 tbsp Kikkoman soy sauce

1 tbsp Mirin

300ml Water

30g  Carrot

30g  Mushroom

30g  Green peas

3g  Ginger ( optional )

[ Katakuriko water ]

1 tbsp katakuriko or potato starch + 2 tbsp water 

  1. Making Ankake sauce. Cut the carrot in matchsticks and slice the mushroom. Place the cut vegetables and green peas in a saucepan. Add sliced or grated ginger for optional flavour. Add 300ml water and cook until the vegetables are soft. Add Kikkoman soy sauce and mirin then cook for another 5 mins. Leave it aside.

  1. Making fried rice. Cut the chicken in small pieces and chop the onion in fine dice. Heat the frying pan with the vegetable oil. Fry the chicken and onion until golden brown. Add the cooked rice, butter then lightly stir fry with a spatula. Add Kikkoman soy sauce and pepper for taste. Place the fried rice in a rice bowl. Flip the fried rice over on the serving bowl.  

  1. Making egg omelets. Crack the egg in a bowl. Mix with cream / milk and maple syrup or cooking sake. Heat the pan and coat it with some vegetable oil. Cook the egg mixture for 10-20 seconds just like a crepe pancake. Place the cooked egg over the rice in the serving bowl.

  1. Finishing Ankake sauce. In a small cup, mix the katakuriko or potato starch with 2 tbsp water until it dissolves. Pour the katakuriko water over and mix well with the chopsticks. Heat the sauce until it becomes thicker. 

  1. Pour the Ankake sauce on the shaped Omurice and serve.

γ„γŸγ γγΎγ™ ITADAKIMASU!!


Sozai Cooking Friends

Join us for online Japanese Cooking, Sozai Friends! Cooking is an enjoyable, friendly and relaxing experience. SOZAI FRIENDS for the ultimat...