Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Boing Boing TV post with the video is up.

Ever since I moved to the boonies, I've posted photos and other notes about my bamboo shoots on Flickr and my blog. This year, after my first post about this year's bamboo shoots, Xeni contacted me and told me that I should make a video. With Mizuka's help, I made a short video of collecting and cooking bamboo shoots and sent it to Xeni.

Xeni and her team edited the video and mentioned that it would be cool if I could find some Creative Commons licensed music to go with it. I looked at some of the stuff that I'd made in the past and looked around online, but couldn't find anything that seemed right for a bamboo cooking video.

I asked Keigo (Cornelius) and got a, "hmm... Bamboo shoots? I think Ryuichi Sakamoto would be better at that." I then asked Ryuichi whether he had any sounds lying around that I could use in a bamboo shoots cooking video. We showed him the video and Ryuichi thought it was funny and agreed to do a proper score.

Thanks you so much Ryuichi for the score. Thanks to Xeni and everyone at BoingBoingtv for getting this going and all of the editing. Thanks to Fumi for capturing and sending the file. This was really fun.

I blogged about how I met Ryuichi Sakamoto earlier.

My recipe below:

TAKENOKO (Young Bamboo Shoots)

How to slice:

Cut tip of takenoko at an angle. Cut vertical to down middle to front.

"Akunuki" process to remove bitter taste:

In a large boiling pot add:

* Dried Chili X 3
* Rice "Nuka" husks 2 handfuls

Cold water 2 liters

Add takenoko with the cuts and husks. Full heat from water for approximately 20-40 min (until you can stick a chopstick into the takenoko). Lower heat as it comes to a boil. After completed, cut heat and leave over night.

The next day, remove husks and cut to smaller pieces and boil for 10 min.

Making "Wakatakeni":

Make 2 cups stock from "Kobu" (seaweed) and "Katsuo" (Bonito flakes). Add Thin Soy Sauce - 3 table spoon, Sugar - table spoon, Sake - 2 table spoon. Add takenoko and boil for 8 min. Add "Wakame" (seaweed) and boil for additional 2 min.

Top with "Kinome" (Japanese herb) and eat as it is OR

Make Takenoko rice:

Make stewed Takenoko above but use "Oage" (dried tofu) instead of "Wakame". Take the sauce from Wakatakeni" and add as flavor to rice in a rice cooker and prepare rice normally. After rice is done, add the stewed takenoko and oage and mix. Enjoy.

Note: "cups" are Japanese size cups which are 200ml or 200cc.


That's a great video - I didn't realize how much work it takes to prepare bamboo shoots! I love it simmered with fatty pork and daikon. Such a shame that most Americans have only tasted the tasteless canned vareity!

I went bamboo shot hunting once in Thailand, very big, growing out of the side of the root. trouble is, we were too young to know how to cook it back then. fond memories.

Hmmm... I attempted to sign up properly, but was blocked with a cryptic error message.

Anyway, thanks for this great video on harvesting and cooking bamboo shoots. I have several varieties of bamboo and some are just starting to get big enough to cook with.

I wonder if anyone here has suggestions on which varieties are best for different dishes? (For those who might plant bamboo just for this purpose)


I found a lucid magic to this video. The Sakamoto score enhanced it. It could be the basis for a bamboo-shooting album. ;) (Something to prepare with 1,000 knives! Ha!) Your partner looks very fun and it was cool to hear both of you, Joi! I've never seen a video of bamboo shoots being prepared before, so I'm glad boingboing tv put this together.

One thing about bamboo shoots and soil. The "aku" which is the strange bitter taste that is in bamboo and the main thing that makes it tough to cook has a lot to do with the soil. Basically, when the shoot is exposed to air, it begins to create this "aku". That's why you try to get them when they're still underground. From what I've read, soil that doesn't hold air much like clay tends to make sweeter shoots with less "aku", whereas loose mulchy soil tends to allow this "aku" to form, even under the ground. On the other hand, it's really a PITA digging up shoots from clay and I haven't seen much bamboo actually growing in clay.

I haven't tested this myself, but something I read.

Wow. Great video. I found the video very informative. I didn't realize bamboo shoots were so much work. I've developed a whole new appreciation for bamboo shoots.

hey, there is a different site that i found talking about different uses of bamboo's and that really makes me interest, if u want to know u u can visit this site also. check it so that u will know more about this.

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