Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Bring in the New Year powerfully with a commitment to yourself, and please read this post for the latest updates! Happy Holidays!

That's right, now's the time to create a powerful, healthy, wholesome, healing diet for yourself! If you're not already macrobiotic or want to learn more, attend some classes at Studio Mugen and go eat at Seed (now open)! Remember, your health is everything, and if you have it you have everything.

I haven't been here for a few weeks and it's good to be back. I miss volunteering. I get so caught up in my own life and find that everything's all about ME, and not ANYONE ELSE! I enjoy giving myself to others for a change, instead of always giving myself to me. It's easy to make excuses to not do good things, but ultimately it's not very rewarding and the satisfaction derived from this is fleeting; it doesn't last.

On a lighter note, I have found that drinking miso soup (I know, I know, I've talked about this in previous blogs! :) ) makes me feel better throughout the day. It's so warm and healing. Drink your miso soup as much as possible, preferably every morning.

After I post this blog Sanae and I are going to have winter soup, and then I will take the dogs for a walk. It's gray and cold today, and we're expecting rain, so it won't be a long walk, but the dogs don't care! They're just so happy to get out and walk!

Also, visit the events page at for upcoming events and activities at Studio Mugen.

Until next time, don't forget to pay a visit to Seed for your winter diet, and have a wonderful holiday season and a great New Year!

Enjoy the pictures!


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy Holidays!

All of us at studio mugen would like to wish you a Happy Holiday! We hope you have a safe one, and get to spend a joyous time with your friends and family.

I will be spending time in Los Angeles with my friends cooking and eating tons of delicious vegan food! Eric and Sanae gave me their dessert cookbook for Christmas, so I will be making decadent desserts for all my friends. Yummm!

Seed will be closing early Christmas Eve and will be closed Christmas day and the 26th. Eric and Sanae have been working really hard and deserve a break!

Bye for now!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Jessica Porter teaches at studio mugen!

I was in Texas last week visiting my family and eating delicious vegan food and it seems that no one was in the office. I think Annalise went to Italy to visit family (lucky her!), so that leaves me to catch you up on what is going on here at studio mugen. :)

We are very excited to have Jessica Porter again at studio mugen in January!

She is the author of The Hip Chick's Guide to Macrobiotics and will be teaching three amazing classes to help you on your way to health and happiness.

Jessica has been practicing macrobiotics since 1992. She teaches regularly at the Kushi Summer Conference, Kripalu Yoga Center and The Taste of Health Caribbean Cruise. Originally trained as an actress, Ms. Porter does standup comedy in her spare time. Her lectures and cooking classes are lively, funny, and full of macro wisdom. Check out her blog, classes and videos at

Saturday, January 24
Winter Cooking: Winter is a very special time when energy gathers in the body; we need to keep warmth inside ourselves, so we need to heat things up in the kitchen. EVEN IN CALIFORNIA! In this class, we will bake, stew and deep fry!

Saturday, January 31
Comfort Foods: In this class we cover two amazing recipes in depth. First, you will learn how to make your own seitan--which is incredibly easy once you've seen it done, but almost impossible to learn from a recipe! Second, we will build the most amazing lasagna, with seitan, portobello mushroom, 3 kinds of "cheese" and carrot/beet tomato sauce. Bring your appetite!

Saturday, February 7th

Spring Cooking: They say Spring doesn't being until March 21st, but that's not true. The energy begins to lift and expand on December 21st and by the end of January vegans and macros can really feel changes happening in their bodies. In this class, we learn how to lighten up in the kitchen as springtime approaches. It's one of the most delicate and yet important transitions of year. We will press, toss and make a lovely spring soup in this class.

Time: 2-5pm
Place: Santa Monica, CA
Fee: $75 each

Register and pay by January 14th to receive $10 off a class!
Register and pay for all 3 classes by Jan 14th and get $30 off!

*Please bring pen, notebook and indoor shoes or socks.
*If you wish to take food home, please bring your own container.
*Please bring your own plate and chopsticks.

*Please pre-register and pay no later than January 17th by e-mailing us at

(Minimum of 5 people is required to hold the class. Space is limited so don't wait.)
(Refunds can only be given if a 5 days notice is received. Or you may take a credit for future class.)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

News from seed restaurant

Studio mugen's sister company is "Seed"restaurant, located in Venice, California. Seed prepares vegan, macrobiotic cuisine without using any refined sugar or chemicals. They also use filtered water for cooking and locally-grown organic produce when possible. Their wholesome, minimally-processed food is prepared according to macrobiotic principles and their menu features burgers, paninis, curry bowls, desserts, organic teas and more. If you are ever in the neighborhood, drop by!

If you have already eaten at seed, please review your experience online at,, and

Also, seed offers gift cards available for any amount, making for the perfect gift for friends and family who enjoy healthy and delicious food.

Special for the holidays, seed offers a Holiday Bento Box for pickup on Christmas Eve.

The Holiday Bento Box includes:
* Parsnip & Chestnut Soup
* Tofu Turkey with Gravy and Cranberry Sauce
* Baked Yams
* Green Beans w/Kale and Almonds
* Sanae's Homemade Pickles
* Pecan Amasake Pie

All this for $45. We are taking pre-orders now, so give us a call with your credit card at 310.396.1604

Friday, November 28, 2008

You can't miss this update!

Hi everyone,

First of all, the whole world needs to know that "Seed", the new restaurant opened by Eric and Sanae in Venice, California, has a gathering every Tuesday night at 7:00. The community fee is $5, and it is open to the public. However, the maximum amount of people at the gathering is 10, so come early. This is the place to be if you want first-hand feedback from Sanae (macrobiotic counselor), and to discuss different topics relating to vegetarianism, veganism, and macrobiotics. Please visit Seed's official website at for more information, as well as the address and phone number.

If you check out page 17 of the December 2008/January 2009 Volume 7/No. 10 issue of LA Yoga magazine, you'll discover a short article/blurb written on Seed! The article is called "seed Sprouts in Venice". Read the article and you'll find a new opportunity to "sprout a healthy life" by eating at Seed. This restaurant is perfect for any "newbies" that are interested in tasting macrobiotic/vegan/vegetarian food. While the atmosphere may be considered "casual", the menu is casual and complex, featuring simple and complex dishes, so your palette will not get bored! Also, as the article explains, Seed is environmentally conscious, and in today's world, caring about the environment is more crucial than ever before. Make your contribution to a healthier body and cleaner environment by dining at Seed.

This Sunday, November 30, is Community Cleanup in Venice with Sanae. We will be picking up trash to restore the beautiful appearance of Venice Beach. Bring your own rake, shovel, pan, and trash bags. We will meet at Seed at 10:00 am. Please visit the website for details:

I just took the dogs for a two hour walk. It was too long and I got lost coming back! The dogs did of course love the walk more than anything, and they weren't even tired when we got back! I stopped to get them some water at a local British pub on Lincoln Boulevard, and they were fully reenergized after that!

Till next time,

Friday, November 14, 2008

A great experience at Seed Kitchen

Today I had the pleasure of eating at Sanae's and Eric's new restaurant called "Seed". It was absolutely delicious. I ordered coffee, the soup of the day (minestrone), the Mango Tango bowl, the Soysage Panini, the Indian Curry, and the Blackened Tempeh Burger (I was hungry!). I had a taste of each dish and everything was excellent. I especially enjoyed the Blackened Tempeh Burger; it was so flavorful and, by the way, all the portions are generous for this kind of restaurant. I am looking forward to continuing my feast at dinner! The atmosphere is very comfortable and colorful, making it a nice, pleasant place to eat. There were many people there, so it looks like the place is off to a great start! It's in such a great location too, right near the beach. There are so many interesting people that congregate in that area, and this gives Seed a great dynamic, along with a very diverse customer base. I highly recommend Seed to anyone looking for a great restaurant, and you don't have to be macrobiotic or vegan, because I'm confident that whoever eats this food will be satisfied.

I took the dogs for a nice long walk and boy oh boy were they excited! We almost went to the beach. The walk lasted for over an hour.

Now, I'm going to write my reviews for Seed! I'm looking forward to seeing it grow. I believe that the restaurant has a bright future, and I'm very happy for Sanae and Eric; they are living their dream!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Lunch at Seed!

Great lunch today at SEED! I got off work at 12pm, ride my bicicle and stopped at Whole Foods for some shopping (the new one in Venice, it's huge, I love it), and literally rush to get my lunch at SEED...BOY!I ordered the saisai donburi (don't ask me what it means) macro bowl, and it's just like I'd make my lunch at home: only just about a million times better...I like when I go out and I don't have to order something too different from what I eat...anyway...this bowl from heaven comes with kabocha, kale ,shiitake, arame seaweed, beans of the day (today was pinto), sauerkraut and a yummi balsamic-miso sauce (which I almost drunk), served on a bed of brown rice.The place was packed!!!Word of mouth already started to spread!
I was totally satisfied, but what I was more happy about was that I got there, and I got to hang out with people I mostly know: Kristy was there (she actually works there...btw, if U R reading...HI KRISTIE!!:-)), and Sanae, and also a few people I met at the opening last week.
It's not just a great place to eat, but it's a nice and comfy place to just hang out.
I found out there will be every tuesday night at 7pm the Macrobiotic Community Evening.I hope I'll be able to go, I'm not sure with my work schedule.
It's important for me to keep contact with my macro friends, since we understand each other so well...when "normies"friends'o mine call me to go out on saturday night, and I tell them "sorry...I have to do my ginger compress tonight.."...they are about to call the psychiatry hospital...yes,I know it's hard to understand, I actually was the same way, before getting on this road...but U know what?!So far Macrobiotics have been helping me more than every doctor (omeopathic and conventional) out I owe Macrobiotics a big deal, and , since it requires discipline and a good chunk of your life, I have a lot of respect for whoever practice RULES!!
See U next,and please,leave your feedbacks!!ciao

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Eric was born with the golden hands

Hi all,hope everybody's doing great...I am!
Got a looot of sleep last night,it hasn't happen in a looong time!

Anyway, saturday Eric and Sanae had an opening "taste"for friends at the kitchen in Venice Beach, "SEED"...."TASTE"??!!IT WAS AN ABSOLUTE FEAST!!

Oh my God...I already knew it, but after that I'm sure..I'll be their best client!!!

As soon as I got in I was delighted with the place: I loved the transparent curtains that resemble the colors of the logo, green and natural brown.
Workers there are very kind and energetic, ready to start!
The tables are wooden, and they give the place a nice natural look.

I couldn't resist on startin'off with the choc chip and almond cookies with hot barley tea (I was riding my bicicle from work and it started raining, I was wet, hungry and anxious to eat Eric's delicatessen!).

So...Sanae, Mako and Peter sat with me at the table (which I was glad to get to know better), and Kristie started to bring those God sent foods from the kitchen: they were bringing plates full of food which we got to taste a few times each: from Salads, kale salads, mango dips, bowls of rice, tempeh, seitan, veggies and chinese rolls, not to mention the burgers on delicious grilled buns and the last but not least, YAMS FRENCH FRIES!!! And served with organic sugar free ketchup!! I haven't had french fries in I don't know how long...and also guilt-free!!
Oh,, guys, if U'll have the chance to visit SEED U all HAVE TO TRY THE YAM FRENCH FRIES!
Of course, at the end, we got desserts...more and more cookies, Madonna's Coconut and choc Mousses, garnished with sweet sesame sticks, and the best of the best, the CUPCAKES!!! Nothing to envy to the sugary-buttery- oily-processed nasty ones that all of us tried at times,when we didn';t know any better!!
I easily could have only eat the icing...GREEN TEA ICING on a choc cupcake!!!I was in heaven!!
I have to say...Eric was born with the golden hands for food (Italian expression, U know what I mean), and class shows in his food.
No wonder why lots of VIPs beg him to cook for them.
I admire him, he said no to everyone to take the risk to open his new place, and I can only wish him the best of luck, he's a talented hard worker, and so he truly deserve to be, he makes our tummy happy!!
So, I invite everyone to stop by and check the food out...guarantee, U won't be disappointed.
Talk to U all next week!!ciao

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

with Kula and Oro

hello!!Everybody left today!It's just me,Kula & Oro!!So much silence around here,nothing like where I live!!Here I only hear birds!Where I live I only hear cars and people screaming!
Anyway...sorry I missed U all last week, I was actually at a macro retreat helded by Lino and Jane Stanchich in North Carolina,absolutely awesome.
Wanna hear something funny??
Today I cook lunch,like almost every time I come here.Sanae always tells me my food is overcook,there fore too yang and tight...well,guess food was more yin today,lighter!!
So,it's true that your mood or emotional state affects the food U R cooking at that time!
Interesting...I actually always burn the food 'cause I leave it on the stove while I go check my emails or wash dishes!!I really didn't believe this,but I have to must be true,'cause since I got back from the retreat (sunday)I feel sooooo relax!!I should do it more often,and actually, I can't wait to go to Northfolk at Eric and Sanae's cabin.I saw the pictures and feel in love with the year,sometime!
Have a good one and stay out of trouble!!ciao#Love,A

Friday, October 24, 2008

Macrobiotic and vegan cookbook update

Hi all, and happy Jewish New Year for any Jews out there reading this!

I recently improved how Eric's and Sanae's cookbook show up in search results. This should improve book sales and bring more awareness to the general public. Now, when you search for their book, it will show up if you run a search for "vegan cookbooks" or "vegan" or "vegan macrobiotics" or "macrobiotic cookbooks". While all sellers want their products to show up on the first page of search results, "Love, Eric" and "Love, Eric and Sanae" are showing up on the first few pages, so be sure to purchase them if you're looking for a great cookbook!

Sanae asked me to find other ways to increase book sales, so that's my next mission! I'll keep you posted :)

Took the dogs for a nice walk today to the local park. I miss Dore and Kin, but they're in doggie heaven now.



Wednesday, October 15, 2008

From Annalisa

I really had a lot of fun yesterday at Studio Mugen.
Everybody's busy with the GRAND OPENING OF SEED!!
Eric today offered me one of his choc truffles, and I have the feeling I'll be his best customer...
Funny, every time I 'd eat something chocolaty and sugary my heart starts racing, I have sweats and I have itching in both my eyebrows (go figure, U guys don't ask me why 'cause I have no idea..), without mentioning I cannot sleep at night...
Well,after eating one of Eric's desserts I never had this problem...and it's because he really doesn't use any refined sugar or white flour. It really makes a difference for my sweet tooth:-))
Junko's not comin'back (I'll miss her a lot) from Japan, at least for a thyere's a new girl, Amy, who happens to live down the street from here, and she's very good with graphics and computers.
I also finally meet Christy Morgan, which we met through a macro yahoo-news-group, and found out we were working/volunteering for the same person, Sanae!!
I already like them both, and they 'll make this place even more enjoyable.
Again, I made lunch today, after bringin'Kula and Oro out.
Sanae's very sweet in reassure me that I don't have to feel ashamed when I cook for her and Eric...well...I still feel kinda embarassed! are some pics from today and also the cat has lost the sensitivity in her tongue,so she needs to be fed by Eric and Sanae4.
I thought this moment was very sweet, it looks like 2 parents feeding the baby. I was very touched, and I had to take a shot of it.
I won't be around next tuesday (I'll be in North Carolina for a macro retreat with Lino Stanchich), so until then I send U all my blessings,
ciao, love

Friday, October 10, 2008


Hello everyone!

Sanae and Eric both have a dream of opening their own restaurant, and that dream is now becoming a reality!

Their restaurant "Seed" is opening soon. It is an Organic Vegan Macrobiotic Kitchen, located at 1604 Pacific Avenue, in Venice, California. The zip code is 90291. The phone number is 310-396-1604. The website is
The restaurant will be open daily from 10 am to 9 pm.

Seed has been advertised in the "Japan Up!" magazine, which contains Japanese cuisine and trends. See page 35 of the October 2008 edition. The magazine is free.

The restaurant is already gaining a lot of publicity, and there is much progress being made on all fronts! Here's what Eric said about the restaurant: "At seed we believe that food is an essential source of our energy, health and happiness. We prepare vegan, macrobiotic cuisine with no animal products, dairy, eggs, or refined sugars. We use locally grown organic produce whenever possible. In the same way that a seed provides the beginnings for a vibrant plant, the food we eat provides the beginnings for a vibrant, flourishing life."

Seed is located right near the beach. The location is great, and will without a doubt attract many different people. I can't wait until it opens!

In addition to working on the restaurant, Sanae has been writing her new vegan macrobiotic healing cookbook called "Love, Sanae." It's very inspiring to see how far Sanae has come on her journey. She is a role model for the entire community. Her and Eric are finally realizing their goals, and it's very powerful to see this happening.

I am honored to be volunteering here at Studio Mugen. It's so nice to see the progress being made. Eric and Sanae are a pleasure to work with. They're both working very hard to change the world of food both for themselves and the world.

Till next time...don't forget your miso soup tomorrow morning!

Happy eating,


Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Annalisa de head chef

Ciao, another wonderful day in Santa Monica...just got here and try to talk to Louise in french, for the very little I Eric and Loise are here, and they are sanding the dining table outside.
It's really a wonderful sunny day, and evry day I thank God for taking me over here in Southern California...I'm looking forward today top take Kula and Oro out for our weekly walk.

Sooo...I guess I'll be the head chef today!!!
I'm actually a little embarassed to cook for such a cook like Eric!!
And Louise too, he said she's a great cook...and of course, Sanae, my macro, I have to be good today!!
We are 4 of us today, Junko will still be in Japan for the next 2 weeks.

I'll use some leftovers, some buckwheat, I'll try to make it pretty, and some red lentils.
I'll also make some greens and maybe I'll cut some pickles too.
Guess that's all for today.
Blessing to everyone,
talk to U all next week!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

From Annalisa

Hey everyone, it's Annalisa.
I haven't write in a while, last week nobody was here, so I didn't come.
I miss it thou...this is part of my regular routine.
Today there are a lot of people, and it makes me feel good, because I'm usually alone, I live alone and I cannot keep any pets...unless I get a note from a doctor stating that "I need it" for emotional support....does somebody have to be messed up to be able to adopt a pet??! Isn't this ridicolous??
Anyway...a Sanae's friend is here, visiting from Japan, ans Eric is here too, and his Mom, Louise, is visiting from Canada.
I wish I could speak French, she 's now alone in the garden, and not speaking any English might make Her feel isolated...I only know 1-2 words, so I cannot really communicate with her.
I'm sure She's enjoying herself anyway, even just for the great weather!! Beside, I know how hard it is to be away from family, all my relatives and close Friends are back in Italy...anyway, before I start crying (I miss'em so much!!), I 'm gonna take off, wishing everyone a great week, now I'll go walk with Kula, Oro and Ita who's here visiting us again.
Blessings, ciao #Annalisa

Friday, September 19, 2008

A decadent Macrobiotic dessert

Hello everyone, I hope the macrobiotic community is doing great on this beautiful Friday afternoon. I am going to help Sanae make lunch today, after I walk the dogs and work on the website. I'm also contacting Amazon to help increase book sales. There is a lot of interest in the books, "Love, Eric", and "Love, Eric and Sanae". Over time, the Amazon and MySpace support will promote the book sales; it just takes time and patience.

As Annalisa said in her previous post, please leave us your comments! We want to hear from you!

I hope everyone has a great weekend.


Friday, September 5, 2008

Memories of Dore and Kin

Dore and Kin were two very sweet and loving dogs; we will never forget them. They were both so smart and cute! I can tell that Oro and Kula miss them dearly. They are both in shock and readjusting to not having them around anymore. I just took both of them for a walk two weeks ago and now they're gone forever, but their doggy souls will live on.

I took Oro and Kula for a walk today and we went all the way to the beach! It was beautiful and there were many people on the beach for a Friday afternoon. They love going for walks. It's one of my favorite things to do here.

I recently set up a MySpace account for studio mugen, so that should promote our blogs and create more traffic to the website, but it takes time for the momentum to build.

Until next well and stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

From Annalisa

Hello, Annalisa here again!!
How's everybody going?
I wanted to thank everyone who come visit our website,we are having a lot of people checkin'it out,and please, please, please,take just one minute to leave us a comment,even just to say hello! We'd love to hear how we can improve this blog.
Anyway...a very sad news is that one of the dogs, Dore ("gold"in french) is been hitten by a car about 2 weeks ago, and passed away...I was so sad when I got the news by email from Junko (Junko is the one in the picture making ice cream,vegan,of course)...Her sister Kula is very sad, and it's incredible to notice how animals have a soul and feelings....U know, since a few years ago (at least in Italy) dogs and pets in general wheren't allowed to enter churches...if it was for me it would be the reverse, considering how certain humans (if U can call them so) treat their pets...they are the beast...anyway...don't wanna go on and on on this, don't get me started!!!
So...a few yaesr ago in Italy finally the law passed where dogs could enter churches, and also, Victor Hugo said that "try to look a dog in the eyes and say doesn 't have a soul...try to look at Kula's eyes to tell she doesn't realize her sister's's just unbelievable. Dogs are so capable of loving under no conditions,and this is the way human was inetended to be...I guess before the civilization, who destroyed pretty much all human's essence.

Anyway...Dore will be always with us, in all our heart. It makes me even more sad knowing that I just took her for a walk a few days before and she was as happy as ever...Kin is also not doing good...but I don't wanna say more, because she needs positive energy around,and not even a bit of negativity...So...please,say a prayer for them.

Also, the picture I posted are from the potluck we had last wesneday. Jessica Porter just moved here in one of Sanae's guesthouse, and she was there too.
Everyone's welcome to our potluck...good people, good food, good energy, good everything.
WE had a delicious soup by Jessica (millet, squash,onions cabbage), and Sanae made the nuka pickles boiled veggies with a sesame-miso dressing (just the dressing tself...I could have ate it with the spoon!), I made a quinoa salad, Sonia made superb cabbage rolls, and Junko made a tofu ice cream using an ice cream maker. It was a fun night, hearing all the stories everyone shares.
We should do it more often.
That's all for today. Ciao!Annalisa

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A wonderful Macrobiotic lunch!

Hello everyone, this is Joel again.

Today we had a great lunch consisting of pressed salad and noodles. I topped it off with gomachio and it was delicious. We also had dressing for the salad. I took the dogs for a walk again and worked on the website. I also set up a new MySpace account for Studio Mugen! However, it's currently under construction, but once it goes "live" you will all know about it!

When I was volunteering in the kitchen at the Kushi Institute, I learned that it's always better to overcook greens than to undercook them. This makes sense. if you overcook greens (and many other things for that matter), you will drain them of their vitamins and they will be soggy. This is obviously not good and defeats the purpose of getting the most out of your food. However, if they're undercooked, they may be dangerous to eat for some people (depending on the condition of the person), and they won't taste nearly as good.

Keep these tips in mind next time you make greens. I always put a pinch of seasalt into the boiling water before adding the greens, and I usually cook them for about five minutes or less, depending on how much your making.

Hope this helps; have a great day!


Tuesday, August 19, 2008

From Annalisa

Heeey, it's Annalisa again...hope everyone's doing well.
Sanae just made an aduki beans tea, it's too hot, but I'd rather burn my tongue 'cause I can't wait to have it!
It's very delicious, plus it helps streghtening the kidneys.
I do need it.
Today I met a new dog, they are house sitting her since the owner is away.
All dogs girls in the house, and as soon as I'm done writing in here I'll take all of them out for a walk and stretch. They have different personalities, and I love to get to know them better during our walks.
MMMhh, the tea is great, now ready to drink! Sometimes U can find also aduki beans ice cream, I tried it (I have a very sweet tooth:-)) and it tasted pretty good...believe me, if I say so, it does...being from Italy and having the dairy ones for such a long time (before I got to macrobiotics) !!
So,the dogs are really callin'me and lickin' my arms and feet.I must take 'em out before they eat me as their ice creM!!
CIAO and have a nice day@Annalisa

Friday, August 15, 2008

Taking care of mugen on Friday, August 15, 2008

Thanks Annalisa! I'll be sure there's some sushi left for you next time. I'm surprised you didn't get to have any! Sushi sure is fun to make.

Today I took all five dogs for a walk and it was great! The weather is so beautiful. The dogs loved their walk and I got some exercise.

Eric, Sanae and Junko went to the Kushi Institute for the Summer Conference. I have yet to hear about it but I'm looking forward to learning about their experiences. I know that there were many speakers and classes at the Summer Conference, and many of the staff members have many, many years of experience with Macrobiotics, so I'm sure that it was very enriching and inspiring. I wish I could have been there! Perhaps I can go next summer. Let's hope that they are still holding the Summer Conference for many years to come!

Time to help with making the lunch and setting up the new MySpace account for Studio Mugen!

Have a great weekend everyone,


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Save sushi for me - Annalisa

My Tummy doesn't care if they don't look,as long as the taste is good,and I'm sure it did...:-)))))
So, here I am today, I haven't been here at Studio Mugen for 2 weeks, and I missed it, it's like part of my weekly routine.
I finished work super early today, so I came earlier, and already took the dogs out, all 4 of them.
It's good exercise for me too, it took me about 1 hour and 25 mins alltogether.
I was excited just to hear about the summer conference at the Kushi Institute where Eric, sanae and Junko went.
Next year I'm planning to go to take level 1, and maybe goin' there for the summer conference too, there are so many wonderful teachers, along with the fact the place itself is beautiful (I saw the pictures).
I really can't wait to start studing seriously, I'm trying to read books, nd take classes whenever there are some around, but I love to go when there are those evnts where U dive in the Macrobiotics for days in a row.
Here is too easy to get distracted with every day life,a dn I also have to work of course, so I don't have all the time I'd like to dedicate to the study of Macrobiotics.
I loved going to the Cruise where I took so many classes, it was great, then French Meadows,and next for me will be Lino Stanchich 's retreat in October.
Those events are too far apart, so for me coming here at Studio Mugen gives me the great opportunity to keep touch basewith Macrobiotics every week. I 'm always grateful to God I have this opportunity,a dn also, I live only 23 blocks from here (today I also came with the bicycle, the weather is just too good to use the car).
Well,all 4 now, U guys take care and please,leave us your feedback!!ciao#Best,Annalisa

Friday, August 1, 2008

An overcast but cool Friday, August 1, at Studio Mugen

Hello again everyone, this is Joel!

I'm preparing my blog today as the cool Pacific Ocean breeze soothes my body. Santa Monica is truly a wonderful town. It's scenic, tranquil, and a great place to have a Macrobiotic community!

Today Marco (another Studio Mugen volunteer) fed the dogs and I will take them on their weekly walk again. I made Israeli couscous this week, and boiled some cauliflower. My lunch today will consist of fish, couscous, bread, vegetables, and spaghetti.

I rolled my first sushi rolls here at Studio Mugen. It's not the easiest thing to do for a first-timer, but I managed! It's important to wet the nori and roll them tight so that the texture and presentation is good. I had vegetables creeping out of the sides of mine, but that's okay! It was my first time!

Till next time,


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Thanks to Sanae!

hello everyone,
it's Annalisa again. Today is sunday, nice warm day in Santa Monica.
I couldn't go to studio cause I was sick after being at French Meadow Summer Camp . I think I got a little cold from the freezing nights!
I was very happy overall, great experience, great people, and great food!! I highly recommend to everyone interested in connecting with a macrobiotic lifestyle.
Anyway, today I want to just drop a line on this: I remember Sanae told me some time ago that , since I'm Italian, I can experiment trying some dishes with pasta, since I grew up with lots of it, and I can tell it's all over my I wanted to try to make something different beside brown rice etc.., so I thought of how to make some pasta dish without tomatoes (I better stay away from them for a while since my digestion system is still healing).
So I did,and it turned out great.Today I felt like a macrobiotic italian!! But still having my miso's my simple pasta dish: organic black soybeans spaghetti with broccoli rabe and onions, . My Grandma was from the south,and She used to make the best pasta with broccoli rabe ever..mine is not even close...but it's on its way to improvement!!When I'll go to Italy in december I'll ask my aunt how Grandma used to do it...
Thanks to Sanae that reminded me where I am from.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Cooking lunch

Hello my Macrobiotic friends!

It's very important to have miso soup every morning because it warms the body and mind. If you're going to commit to anything, be sure and commit to your morning dose of miso soup.

I made a new dish a couple of weeks ago. It consists of beans, rice, shoyu, nuts, sea salt, and lettuce. It's very well balanced and nourishes the entire body. I was proud of myself for making this dish on my own!

Today I'm going to cook lunch after finishing this blog. I'm not sure what we're having but I'm looking forward to getting some experience in the kitchen! It reminds me of working in the kitchen at the Kushi Institute, where I spent 2 months. It was an experience I'll never forget!

Bye for now,


Friday, July 18, 2008

Miso Soup

Hello, this is Joel. Today I took the dogs out for a walk and after I write this blog I will begin to create a MySpace page for Studio Mugen! The crew is making lunch in the kitchen right now and I had a discussion with Sanae about the importance of having miso soup every morning. Miso soup is very calming and alkalizes the blood. It warms the body and brings about harmony and balance. We underestimate the importance of healthy food and how it affects the body. Macrobiotics, a holistic approach to diet and lifestyle, is a very important element for improving one's life and overall well-being. I do Bikram Yoga three times a week and that's also very effective; it's a great form of exercise. Macrobiotics is growing and more people are becoming aware of it. However, it will be a continuous quest but the western world will gradually begin to make dietary changes. This is my belief. Bye for now!

Friday, July 11, 2008

how to promote these blogs?

Hello again, this is Joel and I'm currently researching how to promote these blogs! If anyone has any good ideas on how to promote blogs, please let us know. There are also blogger chats, where people get together and discuss various blogs. This is a wonderful opportunity for anyone wishing to promote their product or service.

My volunteering today is going well, just had lunch, walked the dogs, and now I will work on the website. Keep visiting the site regularly for updated information! Thank you and bye for now!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Hey there...still here!!
Please, if U R redaing this blog and enjoying it, feel free to post comments of any knid,we'd love to hear from U!!
Anyway...Today it's quiet here, Sanae is gone to a retreat with the dogs, and it's only me and Junko. Today I'll do some plum picking, the tree is about to fall, so full of delicious organic plums!
This house is not the same without the dogs hangin'around all the time...sometime they come around while I'm writing at the pc or washing dishes, and they'd start whigging the tale and look at U with those eyes saying "the ball!!!Throw me the ball...please!!!"...and yes, they
'd say "please", cause they all are very well educated dogs!!:-))
They are all 4 female, and since they are golden retriever, each on of them is named "gold", but in different languages...there's also the italian word for gold, which is ORO...then there's Dore (French), Kin (Japanese), Kura (Hawaiian)...and ,of course, there are also 2 cats, Key-Chain and Mai...I love animals, and in my place I can't have any, so when I come here I getto enjoy not also a pre macrobiotic lifestyle, but also the love and company of those precious you can view the pets profile under "about us" and then under "our family".
Well...that's all for now.
Next week I'll going to the French Meadow Camp, organized by the George Oshawa foundation, in Nevada City, close toLake Tahoe and Sacramneto, I really can't, I'll write again in 2 weeks.
Blessings to U all,

Friday, July 4, 2008

Vegan Macrobiotic Community Potluck!

Hello everyone...Happy july 4th by the way!!:-))
I want to post some pics today...some are from the very first potluck we had back in the last wesneday of May, called "RUSKA", in loving memory of this woman who touched many people 's lives with her dedication and compassion. She helped me a lot too, when I first got started with macrobiotics. Thank you, Ruska!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Lunch and Plums

Hello, Annalisa here again...last time I was here we made plums jam, and it was very interesting too see how a jam can be so delicious and so very natural, without refined sugar added.
Sanae and Eric have the tree in the yard, so we picked some plums, fresh from the tree right in the pot...cover the big pot half with water, boil it about 4-5 hours, then add some brown rice syrup to taste...and voila'!!
Too bad I didn't have my camera, so I couldn't take time, comin'up!
Today it's a little chilly,at least for me. I just got here, Sanae and Junko are at the post office, and I'm here, surrounded by those sweetie pie dogs that are sleeping, waiting for them to come back, and cook lunch alltogether.
I'm wondering what's cookin'today!

Since I don't have much to talk about today, I'll say this..I don't know why I'm literally craving corn those day...well,probably cause it well satisfies muy sweet tooth :-)...safely...anyway...I was brousing Sanae's cookbook, and there are a lot of recipes with corn. The one that appealed to me was the corn I did also includes a little piece of potato to show people it's ok to have a little bit every once in a while, like if U R healthy, U CAN, yes, U CAN have some nightshades here and there, some spices, etc...always, if U R not healing from any condition in, see, macrobiotic is not all about "don't eat this, avoid that.."...It's good to know I can still have some of my fav the way...did U know U can make delicious french fries out of yams??!! Try that too!! Satisfaction guarantee!
The other day I made the corn chowder, following it exactly...I cannot begin to tell delicious it was. And without dairy! It's unbelievable, was so sweet I almost didn't crave any sweet for the whole time...I particularly LOOOOVE the basil oil, whicjh I actually used also as a dressing for other recipes, like for ex. a pressed salad, it's very refreshing, and it keeps good in the refrigerator for a while, so U can really use it and use it...I could have it out of a dad was here a few months ago, and I asked him to bring me some very good e.v.olive oil from Italy, organic of course. So I used that, and also fresh basil just bought at the farmes market on Main str. in Santa Monica.
Also, I tried the simmered turnips, and those too, came out great, very tasty.
Actually the recipes are pretty easy to follow, and I feel sorry for non-vegetarians, which they don't know what they miss...before I gave up the standard diet (january 08) I thought I was going to be miserable, eating plain this, plain that, steam and boiled food that tastes like cardboard...well, I'm very glad to see I was very wrong. Almost every dish on the planet has the vegan version, and much more healthy too...for ex., Sanae's corn chowder has no milk at all, not even soy milk, but it's made creamy just by blending half of it, and putted it back to the pot. Of course, I think U can do that with other kind of soups too, like kabocha (my fav food), butternut, red lentils, etc...Also, one interesting thing is that the more I try these recipes, and the more it opens my mind, cause I can always use the ideas and changing the ingredients around..God bless the day I decided to give macrobiotic a try.
Best to all the readers,

Friday, June 27, 2008

Just a thought...

Whenever I mention the word Macrobiotics to someone, I usually get a perplexed look until I explain what it is, and even after I explain it, most people give me a strange look and think it's odd in some way. In the western world, it's easy to brush off foreign approaches to diet. We live in a fast-paced society where many people neglect the importance of diet and exercise. Most people I've encountered since my involvement in Macrobiotics don't know what it is, but some have heard of it. They might have some misconceptions of what it entails. For instance, some people think that a Macrobiotic diet consists only of rice and seaweed, while others think that it's limited in other ways. The point is that many people think that, with a Macrobiotic diet, one is not allowed to eat most foods. This is simply not true. The diet is very diverse and consists of many foods. Of course, what a person can eat or not eat depends on his or her condition (if any), allergic reactions (if any), personal preference, and other factors. Personally, I love the food; It's absolutely delicious! And I feel better after eating it. It also improves my brain power, emotional states, and many other facets of my life. I intend on maintaining my Macrobiotic diet from now to posterity. Till next time... !


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Guests from Mexico are coming

Ok, today there's a great energy in here, Sanae just told me she's going to have 2 guests from Mexico, and we're all goin'to have lunch together (I'll get to help for lunch, God, help!! :-))...
I didn't know this, but Sanae is making available the whole macrobiotic experience at her place to whoever wants to do it...2 types of experiences: one where the person just comes here, relax, eat macrobiotic meals, and just get to live a macrobiotic lifestyle for a few days...another one, the person comes here and she/he can request to take classes from Sanae, lectures, and also got nice shiatzu massages, along with helping in the kitchen to other words, HOW TO LIVE MACROBIOTICALLY in the big city...Sanae is very good at makin' this possible, I mean, she recovered herself from a terminal disease, and she endorses a healing style, but flexible at the same time...R U askin'yourself HOW?! Well...come here and look with your own eyes....again, I said this many time, but I have 2 say I'm so grateful I get to spend here some time to learn all this, every week.
A note:
I was reading a Denny Waxman's book the other day, and I found this concept outlined in the following example: macrobiotic is to be align with nature...nature is balancing and flexible at the same time...balancing cuse is predictable: we all know when the sun will rise, when the sun will sunset (not the right English, but I don't know the word for it , sorry :-)), and the same fo the moon, we also know what way they'll both go in the sky, every day....also, at the same time, we don't know when nature will make rain, sun, cloudy, different concepts, opposite actually, in the same contest...isn't it the yin and yang factor???!
I love when all this pieces of the puzzle start to come together and I can see the whole picture...It makes me wanna go deeper and deeper in me learning about all this...I love it!! I love when all makes sense...
Anyway...that's what I'm basuically learning here the most. I read lots of books and artiocles about how things "should be", and Sanae is teachin'me that there no such things like "should" and "shouldn't" in's hard to grasp this concept, since we always hear about "no this, no meat, no dairies, etc..."...but at the end, it all makes sense....another great teaching is: start thinkin'about WHAT YOU CAN ADD TO YOUR DIET AND LIFESTYLE,rather than what You need to's kinda like seeing the glass half empty toward half full....

Anyway...back to our guests...I'm lookin'forward to meet'em...I'm sure they can talk Spanish, and I can talk Italian, and we both can communicate very well....ok,that's all for now.
I'm going to start bringing my camera so I can take some pics and show what's like in here...for now, I wish everybody a beautiful day!!ciaoooooooo

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

cookin' yummi...

Today I got out of work sooner,so I was able to go grocery shopping before coming here to Studio Mugen.
Sanae was preparing lunch, so I was watching her and she told me I could help...I thought I was too messy to actually start cooking for everybody that's here today...but she made me feel comfortable by tellin'me one thing that me,as a calculator-kinda-closed-minded european have to remember,because it's very important to macrobiotic practice: there's no right or wrong. There's no putting onions in pot before the peas, or something like that...the main thing I have to remember is TO BE FLEXIBLE, otherwise an overly tight condition (like I have) will become even tigher...good point...I haven't thought about it. Simple teaching, great concept, and even more, a huge help...I always beat myself up for forgetting to put the salt 20 minutes before the end of cooking, or I should have put 1/2 tsp of miso instead of 1/3...I always go by the book,and not too much by intuition.That's the big teaching I got out today.

Can U believe the taste that pumpkin seeds roasted with tamari soy sauce have??? Sanae mixed them in to leftovers brown rice and some light blanched scallions...sorry to repeat myself so many times in this blog, but , again, the simplest foods turn out to be so amazing just by some very simple modifications...I'm so amazed...and more to come.I can't wait.I wish I could be here 24 hours.
My best to everyone, ciao from Annalisa!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The wonderful world of Macrobiotics

Hello Macrobiotic community,

My name is Joel and I am new to Macrobiotics. I spent two months working in the kitchen at the Kushi Institute in Becket, Massachusetts, from March to May of 2008, where I learned all about Macrobiotics. Outside of my 35-40 hour commitment in the kitchen, I had the privilege of auditing Oriental Diagnosis, Shiatsu, and Acupuncture classes. In addition, I had the wonderful opportunity to learn how to cook for myself; this was invaluable and I have taken this knowledge to my home in Los Angeles where I currently practice cooking for myself in my kitchen, along with volunteering 4-5 hours a week at studio Mugen, the epicenter of the Macrobiotic community in Los Angeles.

While Los Angeles isn't as scenic as western Massachusetts (location of Kushi Institute), volunteering at studio Mugen makes up for it. The people here are very friendly and supportive, and, since they are located in beautiful Santa Monica (near the beach), we get to enjoy the ocean breeze and the wonderful weather throughout the year.

I met Sanae at the Kushi Institute in May 2008. I expressed interest in continuing to learn at home (I live only one hour from their house), and Sanae graciously took me into the community where I am now experiencing full immersion while at the same time "giving back" to the community through my volunteership.

This journey has been a very rewarding and fulfilling one, to say the least. Since I changed my diet, I've been feeling better and have lost weight. I'm more conscious of what I eat. I've been reading books, including the ones released by Sanae and Eric. You can find out more about these books on this website.

Please come back to visit us! We'd love to hear from you.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

What I learned from cooking class

Sooo...there was the cooking class last saturday...we were 9 people, some new faces to me, and some not....and the day was sunny and warm.
Can't begin to tell U how much I've learn just only by watching Eric cutting the veggies...
The recipes were from their cookbook, and when I read them I thought:"Oh,yeah,I can make this...easy!!"
...sure, but being in a live class is a complete different experience....
So many things a book cannot tell U, like why U R washing the rice in a certain way, or if U cannot have some kind of food or herbs or condiments, how U can subtitute it and, most important, WHY... A cookbook, even if it is a very good one, doesn't say that, even if , of course, the recipe means a lot, but it's not everything.
Most of the time when we cook we just follow whatever the recipe says, without questioning why we do this or that.
A book is useful, but doesn't answer your questions ...all those things U can get out of a class like this.
Making the food "cute and pretty" is also important to be able to fully enjoy it...
In Italy we say "The eye wants its part", not sure if there's a similar expression in the Usa, but I think U understand what I mean... and I've always thought that this was useless, spending a lot of time to cut the food in different shapes and forms, and, at the end, it all goes in the same place anyway, so why bother??? Well, I couldn't be more wrong... when I ate the food today I noticed how my mood was different , more cheerful, probably made so from the rainbow mix of vivid colors and shapes all the veggies had...

Personal Note: I see the whole macrobiotic thing like a LIFESTYLE and not just merely nourishes us, sure, it's our fuel, but if U R eating it in front of the tv or pc while U R checking your emails, or lying on the couch in a sleeping position, without paying any attention to relax your stomach muscles by deep breathing and not chewing each bite very well...the nutrients in the food will just not be absorbed from your body, causing all kinds of troubles in it...mental and physical.... I did it...I tried it....
When I started macrobiotic the TV was a must, phone ringing all the time, sometimes reading, and a lot of times eating standing, in 5 minutes or less (La sad...)....I felt almost no difference in my body since I started changin'my lifestyle too...that's when I started seeing the real difference, both in my mind and body.

Anyway.....just wanted to say how enthusiastic I was about the class...the simplest foods were cooked by Eric and Sanae in the most delicious way ever...

We started with a melon soup, refreshing and very summertime (Eric showed us it could have been served in a glass just as a cocktail!)....NOTE: for example, because it's fruit, I'd have consider it as a dessert...but Sanae explained me that , actually, that kind of soup it's very good to prepare your stomach before the meal...and, again, here's one of the many advantages of taking a live cooking class.

A simple salad (actually, my favorite dish of the day: quinoa, baby greens and kale with lemon and olive oil dressing) felt just like heaven in my mouth...going to the fancy gourmet veggie pancake (with tofu sour cream...yummy yummy yummy) that has nothin'to envy to IHOP...

Other dishes were brown rice and corn (simpy delicious as well, I want to try it tomorrow for lunch:-)), and Sanae made some fresh gomashio and served some carrot pickles...

I was delighted, and feeling very fortunate I have the luck to be part of all this...
I really encourage everybody taking live cooking classes...their value is just without price (I hope it's the right English...but I'm sure U know what I'm talkin'about :-)))...ciao!@!

Friday, June 6, 2008

From Annalisa

Yesterday I was pretty tense (that's just how my day started...too yang!) and I relaxed a lot when I got to the Mugen studio. ..great sunny day, miso soup (that Junko made, could she cut the scallions so nicely thin???? God, how much do I need to learn...) eaten on the porch and chatting alltogether.
Lookin'forward for the cooking class this coming saturday...and the food tasting expecially....melon soup...yummy!!!!ciao ,best to all#Annalisa

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I'm Annalisa, I 'm from Italy and currently I live in beautiful Santa Monica, Ca.
I 'm just a newbie with macrobiotics, but so far, I have to say, it's been an interesting journey for me, and I'm always excited about what's going to bring me next...I mean, I have some pretty unusual health challenges for my age (I'm 32), and after spending thousands in doctors, pils, etc...I decided to give macrobiotic a shot...the seed was planted in me a few years ago by a Friend of mine in Italy who cured herself with Macrobiotic. Of course, by being healthy and cocky, I didn't need to give up my meat, dairyes and sugar which they were my Gods...Few years go by, and now I'm faced with some health issues that no doctor can figure,tired of this, the seed that was planted years ago has grown in me, and here I am.
I spent hours at the computer searching for contacts around here, and Thank God, I found it.
Sanae opened the door of her house to me I'm blessed I found this place where I get to hang out with nice girls and learn at the same time.
In this house I had my first macrobiotic class on how to make the basics, Gomashio, brown rice and miso soup...I was just reading "the macrobiotic way" by M.Kushi, and I didn't realize how many things I was doing wrong since I took Sanae's class. And after that, I realized how much I need to learn in order to make things right and healing for me.
That's why I'm blessed to be here. I believe God put me here so I can change my life for the better.
And also, one thing has change: after knowing what meat, dairyes and sugar do to my body my cravings for them is almost gone....and I can always satisfy that "almost"with the great macrobiotic desserts that I learned to make with Eric and Sanae's dessert book.
Enjoy the blog!!!!