HARUKA: Are you ready, Makoto?
MAKOTO: Yeah. I’m ready for anything, Haru.
HARUKA: Then… let’s begin.
MAKOTO: Ah, wait! I forgot to put on an apron! [scrambles] I’m really sorry about this, Haru. I’ve never even attempted to cook anything before now.
HARUKA: It’s fine. But why the sudden request to teach you how to cook? Are you making food for someone?
MAKOTO: [laughs] Ran and Ren. Tomorrow is my parents’ marriage anniversary, so they’re going to spend the day at the hot springs. I have to watch over Ran and Ren while they’re away, and I can’t feed them takeout pizza for both lunch and dinner.
HARUKA: Then mackerel cooked in miso would be perfect for you. It’s so easy that even a beginner can do it.
MAKOTO: I put myself under your tutelage, Haru.
HARUKA: Sure. Then let’s begin. Do it the way I tell you to. First, we have to prep the fish. Put the mackerel fillets on top of the bamboo drainer.
MAKOTO: Like this?
HARUKA: Then put a paper towel on top. We’re going to douse them in hot water. The hot water is in the kettle.
MAKOTO: [takes kettle and pours] Like this?
HARUKA: Yeah. By simmering them in hot water first, it removes their fishy smell and prevents them from breaking apart while they’re cooking.
MAKOTO: Wow… this is all so professional!
HARUKA: It’s normal to know this much.
MAKOTO: [laughs] This reminds me of what we all talked about that one time, about who we’d choose for a boyfriend. You’d make a good husband when you get married, Haru.
HARUKA: I’m not interested in getting married.
MAKOTO: Yeah, if you got married, you won’t be able to say “I only swim freestyle” anymore.
HARUKA: Leave me alone. Quit talking and keep moving with the preparations. Next is the ginger root. Cut it in thin slices.
MAKOTO: Uhm… ginger root, ginger root… Like this? [starts cutting] Wah!
HARUKA: No, be careful! When you’re using the cutting knife, you’re supposed to curl your fingers on your support hand, remember?
HARUKA: …We took home-ec classes in school together, don’t you remember learning that? You’re supposed to curl your finger like this…
MAKOTO: Oh! Right!
HARUKA: Makoto… Don’t tell me you’ve never touched a knife since then.
MAKOTO: Eh? Uhm… well… I guess…?
HARUKA: [sighs] Try cutting it the way I just showed you. Go as slow as you need to.
MAKOTO: Okay. [slicing]
HARUKA: Yeah, that’s it.
MAKOTO: …I did it!
HARUKA: Okay then. Next, put soy sauce, mirin, cooking sake, sugar, and water in the frying pan, and bring it to a boil.
MAKOTO: Wait, hang on! Let’s see now… soy sauce, mirin… sake… sugar… and… [turns on the stove] Ack! It’s hot!
HARUKA: No, dummy! You’re too close to the flames!
HARUKA: You didn’t burn yourself, did you?
MAKOTO: Yeah, I’m okay. Thanks.
HARUKA: Then next, line up the mackerel fillets without overlapping them in the frying pan so they cook evenly.
MAKOTO: Like this?
HARUKA: Yeah. That’s the only thing you did well.
MAKOTO: Be quiet.
HARUKA: Put the ginger root you sliced earlier into the frying pan too, and cover the pan with the lid. We’ll let it simmer for 5-10 minutes on medium heat.
MAKOTO: If this were a cooking show, they’d bring out the completed dish they’d made beforehand at this point.
HARUKA: Why is it you know that, and yet you don’t know how to use a cutting knife?
MAKOTO: Oh, be quiet.
HARUKA: Let’s move on. Once it’s done simmering, ladle some of the broth with miso, then distribute that around the mackerel back into the frying pan. This is when I also add in this as my secret ingredient.
HARUKA: Putting in a tiny amount of it helps to bring out the flavor. You can use cheese or yogurt too, but I always use this.
MAKOTO: Wow… that part about you is really amazing. I never would have thought up something like that.
HARUKA: …If you cooked, you would…
x x x
HARUKA: Okay, it’s all done.
MAKOTO: Smells great! I hope it turned out well.
HARUKA: Makoto, open your mouth.
[HARUKA feeds MAKOTO]
HARUKA: Is it good?
HARUKA: What’s wrong?
MAKOTO: Haru, it’s kind of salty!
HARUKA: Eh? Could it be…? Where did you get the sugar from?
MAKOTO: Eh, from this container with the blue lid.
HARUKA: That’s salt.
MAKOTO: What now? We can’t eat this… I guess we’ll have to throw it out…
HARUKA: No. This mackerel isn’t dead yet.
MAKOTO: Eh? What are you going to do, Haru?
HARUKA: First, break up the mackerel fillet into small pieces. Then we’ll fry them with eggs in the frying pan. Makoto, take out the eggs.
[HARUKA whisks the eggs]
HARUKA: After that, we’ll add in a serving of cold cooked rice and stir-fry it altogether.
MAKOTO: Such skilled movements…
HARUKA: No need for any more seasonings. With this, you now have mackerel-miso fried rice.
MAKOTO: Wow! Can I have a bite?
MAKOTO: …It’s so good! It’s really good, Haru!
HARUKA: That’s great.
MAKOTO: This is going to make them so happy!
HARUKA: Only if you manage to pull it off properly tomorrow.
MAKOTO: That’s true. Haru.
MAKOTO: Hey, the frying pan! The food’s burning!
HARUKA: The crispy parts of the rice still taste good.
MAKOTO: But it’s turning black! Ah! Now the fried rice is on fire!
HARUKA: Calm down. You can use mayonnaise to extinguish the flames.
MAKOTO: You can’t do that, Haru! Just use the lid! The lid! Put the lid on the frying pan— [MAKOTO’s cell phone goes off] Who’s calling me at a time like this?! Hello? Rei? What? Tomorrow’s training menu? Sorry, now’s not the time— No, I don’t mean that, the fried rice—
Always Here, lyric and translation
my base, your pace, lyric and translation