Red Radish & Wakame Pressed Pickle Salad

Wakame red radish ume pressed salad CR 650

Eating sour taste with fermented foods which have enzyme helps to detox your liver and gallbladder. (Liver and Gallbladder is active in spring time)

Liver and Gallbladder is active in springtime by Oriental medicine.

Making quick pressed pickles and eat as a salad is perfect for this season.

650 Red radish

Red Radishes with Leafy Greens from Santa Monica Farmers Market


Here is the recipe for you (You can use this recipe for your dog’s meal also, but take out umeboshi plums!)

Red radish and Wakame Pressed Pickle Salad

Makes: Two servings

1/4 cup soaked wakame sea vegetable, cut small

2 cups thinly sliced red radishes with the leafy greens

1~2 umeboshi plums – make a paste with knife

pickle presser or plate with rocks


  1. Soak the wakame till it gets soft. Cut the wakame bite size.
  1. Place the sliced red radishes with small cut the greens in a bowl and add the Wakame over
  1. Add umeboshi plum paste to the wakame and red radishes with the greens and mix very well.
  1. Place them into a pickle presser and put the top on to apply pressure or place a plate which fit to press to the bowl and put rocks to press.
  1. Allow sitting about 1~3 hours. Remove them and squeeze out excess liquid and taste.
  1. Arrange attractively in a serving dish.


650 Main Coast Wakame

Wakame from Maine Seaweed


Variation: Use daikon, Chinese cabbage or your favorite vegetables.

These pickles salad is even more delicious if aged for 2-3 days. It will keep about 1-2 weeks if stored in the refrigerator. Pickles aid digestion, strengthen the intestines and increase the appetite.


Bon Appetit!

Love, Sanae

Healing Elderberry Tea

elderberry Tea side © 650

Elderberry has so many benefits for us.  Antioxidant activity to lower cholesterol, improve vision, boost the immune system, improve heart health and for coughs, colds, flu, bacterial and viral infections and tonsillitis. Sauce:

I never saw real Elderberries till we went to North Fork, California.

Since all the commercial Elderberry Tea/Syrup has sugar and I did not find dried Elderberries in any stores. Thanks for Linda in North Fork to gave me her Elderberries two years ago first time so I could make it my own. She also told me how to make it too.

When I first tasted it I felt so healing earthy taste and I could tell my cough will be gone very quickly.

It is delicious and simple to make it. If you like you can add rice syrup and is made with dried elderberries, herbs and spices.

It is super immune-boosting.
Let’s make Elderberry tea! You can purchase them

You can purchase dried Elderberries from

Mountainroseherbs &    Sunburst


Recipe for Simple Elderberry Tea

Serves: 2


  • 16 ounces of filtered water (2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons dried elderberries
  • 1 tsp rice syrup or maple syrup (optional)


  1. First, put the water and elderberries into a small saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 20~30 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and let it sit for 3~6 hours. This helps bring out the beneficial properties of the elderberries.
  4. Finally, strain through a fine mesh strainer and heat it up and pour into individual mugs.
  5. If you want to have sweetener then add rice syrup or maple syrup.

Photo: Beautiful Elderberry


Hope you enjoy homemade elderberry tea!


Love, Sanae 💖

New Year Recipe: Omedetou

Azuki bean's sprout is so cute! 小豆の芽が出て可愛い!

In the macrobiotic world, azuki bean congee has a special name: omedetou.

(Azuki beans are strengthing beans and the sprout is beautiful as the front photo.)

The word means “congratulations” and is used especially in the New Year and for happy occasions like having a baby, passing a big exam, etc. George Ohsawa (founder of the macrobiotic philosophy) named azuki bean congee omedetou for when you get well from illness. Eating this porridge in the New Year will help you have a positive mind.



photo: Omedetou in my cat rice bowl


Makes 4 servings


1 cup brown rice

½ cup azuki beans

5–10 cups purified water

1″ square kombu sea vegetables昆布 (2cmx2cm)1枚

Roasted sesame seeds


Pressure Cooker Method:

  1. Wash the rice gently, about three times. Roast till golden brown. Wash the azuki beans and remove pebbles, etc.
  2. Place the rice and beans in the pressure cooker. Add the water and kombu, cover, and heat over a medium-high flame.
  3. When the pressure is up, turn the flame to simmer and cook for 60 minutes.
  4. Remove from the flame and wait till the pressure is down.
  5. Serve with roasted sesame seeds.


Non-Pressure Method:

  1. Wash the rice gently, about three times. Roast till golden brown. Wash the azuki beans and remove pebbles, etc.
  2. Place the rice and beans in a stainless or ceramic pot, add water, and heat over a medium-high flame.
  3. When it starts to boil, add the kombu, cover, turn the flame to simmer, and cook for 2 hours.
  4. Remove from the flame, and wait till the pressure is down.
  5. Serve with roasted sesame seeds.


Enjoy your omedetou and chew well!



Bancha Twig Tea (Kukicha)


I love tea.
Yes, I am Japanese.
I’ve also been told that I was English in a previous life so that naturally gives me the title of “Tea Lover.”


Since I was about 7 years old, one of my favorite things was taking a tea break with my mother’s housekeeper, Mrs. Kato. We usually had bancha (harvested from the same tree as sencha grade, but it is plucked later than sencha, giving it a lower market grade). It is considered to be the lowest grade of green tea. There are 22 grades of bancha. Its flavor is unique; it has a stronger organic straw smell than sencha (a type of Japanese ryokucha/green tea prepared by infusing the processed whole tea leaves in hot water). Mrs. Kato said sencha was too strong for a child, and usually, it is for guests. I tried some, but I did not like it because it tasted bitter.

I started to learn Japanese tea ceremony when I was 17 years old. I used macha, a finely ground powder of specially grown and processed green tea. It was very creamy, and its aromatic taste matched the Japanese tea ceremony sweets. Macha is for special times, but it is high in caffeine. I am not able to drink it most of the time since I am sensitive to caffeine now, so my favorite tea became non-caffeinated herbal tea, like rosehip tea and bancha twig tea (kukicha).

Kukicha is very low in caffeine. Most of the caffeine is in the leaves, which are not used, and the rest is reduced by the aging process. Kukicha is called “three-year bancha” in Japan, because after the stems, stalks and twigs of the tea are picked, they are dried in the sun and aged for three years before roasting. I usually do not feel any caffeine effects, and it is safe for children to drink.

Kukicha has a unique flavor and aroma among teas, due to its aging process and becoming more alkaline. And the benefits of kukicha are numerous. It is an important part of the macrobiotic diet and is thought to lead to stable health and longevity.

It also good to add apple juice when you want to have a little sweet taste when your body gets too tight and need to relax. I usually add a half purified water and a half apple juice and heat up. You can add a slice of apple too.


I use Eden’s Tea Bag for when I am traveling or going out for lunch/dinner. It still give a good taste of Kukicha.


Benefits of Kukicha Tea

Most of the benefits of kukicha tea stem from its alkalizing properties. Prevention of numerous diseases is achieved through alkalization of bodily fluids and tissues and consequent balanced levels of acidity. A diet containing white flour, sugars, dairy products, eggs and meat raises the body’s acidity and eventually results in fatigue, premature aging, weakened immune system, heart, kidney or bladder conditions, and problems with weight, joints and bones. A body containing too much acid draws minerals from bones and other organs and stores fat.
Twig tea (kukicha) is abundant with minerals like copper, selenium, manganese, calcium, zinc and fluoride, as well as A, C and B-complex vitamins and flavonoids. Like green tea, it contains polyphenolic catechins, which are famous for their anti-cancer action. The most powerful of these substances is epigallocatechin, which prevents cancer by discouraging the growth of tumors and stopping it from spreading within cells. Kukicha is also known to promote digestion. Moreover, it has a high content of tannin, which helps clean the body from toxins. Tannin can even free the body from nicotine and radioactivity, which is why it is recommended for people who take many medications.

Similarly to green tea, kukicha regulates the levels of blood sugar, and by lowering high blood pressure, it prevents strokes and heart disease. Being an immunity booster, it helps combat virus-induced colds and flu. Kukicha can also promote weight loss, slow down the aging process, and prevent ulcers. When brewing twig tea, it is important to use hot water, but not boiling. Once boiled water has cooled, the tea is steeped for three minutes at the most. It can also be served cold, with the addition of apple juice, and enjoyed throughout the day—even by children.

Many health benefits may be gained from drinking kukicha, including:

  • Contains six times more calcium than cows’ milk, helping to build bone density
  • Contains 2.5 times more vitamin C than oranges
  • Reduces high blood pressure
  • Helps with digestion
  • Combats fatigue
  • Benefits people suffering from bladder infection and heart diseases
  • Reduces the risk of certain types of cancer
  • Fluoride helps reduce plaque and bacterial infection
  • Helps lower cholesterol levels
  • Low in caffeine
  • Burns fat


How to Make Twig Tea (Kukicha)

2–3 cups purified water (depending on how strong you want to make the tea)

1 tablespoon twig tea (kukicha)

Place the water in a teakettle, and bring to a boil. Place the twigs directly in the pot or in a tea ball. Reduce the flame to low, and simmer 3–5 minutes. If adding the tea directly to the pot, strain through a tea strainer when serving.



Umeboshi Plum With Twig Tea (Kukicha) Remedy



Winter Baking Class: Plant-Based, Vegan, Macrobiotic Desserts


I love desserts, so when I became a plant-based, vegan, macrobiotic person to heal myself, the hardest thing was not eating desserts that had refined sugar, butter, cream and eggs. It is my weakest link, but my husband Eric rescued me—and can rescue all of you if you have this weakness like I do. He makes plant-based, vegan, macrobiotic desserts so tasty and healthy you won’t believe it.



I had to beg him to do a winter baking class, so we are offering it on Sunday, December 11th, at Studio Mgen in Santa Monica. I hope you’ll join us and taste the real plant-based, vegan, macrobiotic desserts that you can enjoy without guilt.

I hope you’ll join us and taste the real delicious plant-based, vegan, macrobiotic desserts that you can enjoy without guilt.



Sunday, December 11, 2016



Studio Mugen, Santa Monica

Learn how to bake delicious, healthy, macrobiotic desserts with chef Eric Lechasseur and Sanae Suzuki, so for the rest of the holidays, you do not have to eat sugary, unhealthy desserts. Please email or to save your spot.


  1. Two Kinds Scone 1) fruits/azuki 2) savory
  2. Two kinds of baked Donut 1) maple-glazed 2) strawberry-kuzu-glazed
  3. Amazake Pecan Pie
  4. Grain Café Au Lait

If you can’t come to the class,  you can purchase Eric’s stunning plant-based vegan and macrobiotic desserts cookbook, “Love, Eric Revisedand learn how to make healthy delicious desserts at your home.



I am so excited because I usually can’t find any good quality delicious plant-based, vegan macrobiotic baking desserts anywhere.

I get to help the class and able to eat them!




Miracle of Maple Tree Recover!


I planted three maple trees by the side of our North Fork mountain cabin front gate in 2005.
North Fork is beautiful mountain forest, but most of them are evergreen pine trees so I wanted to have my husband to have a feeling of his home of Quebec and me to feel my home country of Japan to see the leaves change color to red.


One of them got badly injured almost four years ago (March 2013) by a car that backed over the tree and broke the main trunk. Nobody thought this tree (she) would make it, but I thought I wanted to help her.


Photo: Wounded maple tree trunk with a little remedy glue that I made. Sorry for the out of focus.


I made a special remedy glue with soft-cooked brown rice and barley to mended her. This idea came from an old traditional story of “Shitakiri Suzume” (translated literally into “Tongue-Cut Sparrow“, is a traditional Japanese story of a kind old man, his avaricious wife and an injured sparrow) that made a glue with rice. Most people can’t believe, but I knew she would; miracles can happen and guess what?….she came back!



Photo: The maple tree with remedy glue of soft-cooked brown rice and barley that I made for her.



Photo: Special remedy glue was made in my suribachi (earthenware mortar).


Because of drought, many trees did not survive the last few years, and two other maple trees did not make it—but the one I helped to mend survived! Can you believe?
She started to show beautiful autumn colors from following year even more beautiful than before. Many of our North Fork friends told us how beautiful she became, but she was showing the red leaves before Thanksgiving week so we didn’t see her color because we usually visited North Fork on Thanksgiving week.

I finally saw when I went back to Vipassana 10 days meditation in North Fork two years ago (2014) before Thanksgiving week and she was so beautiful and made me feel so happy. I took the photo with her to show Eric.


Photo:The maple tree was getting better to show red leaves in 2014.


This year, our friend of Noth Fork told us how beautiful the maple tree showing her red leave’s color again so I talked to her  before Thanksgiving week and asked her if she could keep the red leaves for us to see, especially for Eric since he never saw her with red leaves.  She said she will do her best and she kept her promise for us so Eric and I were able to see these beautiful leaves for the first time on Thanksgiving weekend together.

I feel the tree is thanking us by showing her beautiful color every year because I helped her to come back. I named her “Thank you (Arigatou) Maple Tree”.  Everything is a miracle when you believe it and not give up before the miracle happens.

I took the bandage out for her and express my gratitude to “Thank you (Arigatou), Maple tree”.



Photo: The maple tree’s wound is all healed so we took the bandage out this year 2016.





Photo: The maple tree is showing most beautiful leaves this year in 2016.


with my love,

Sanae 💖