Are laziness, forgetfulness, and Japan’s record-breaking heat the ingredients to a great meal?

With Japan experiencing record-setting heat this summer, our Japanese-language reporters Seiji and Yoshio decided to put the solar intensity to use by cooking some bacon and a monjayaki Japanese pancake on the hood of the SoraNews24 company car. As they sat in the shade following their sun-cooked meal, though, they became aware of a problem.

Since they hadn’t known if their experimental cooking technique would actually work, they’d only prepared a small quantity of ingredients, and even after finishing the bacon and monjayaki, they were both still hungry. Believing they were out of food, they decided to drive back to the store and pick up some onigiri rice balls or something. So Seiji opened the car’s door, but in the moment between getting blasted in the face by superheated air from the vehicle’s interior and actually getting inside, he noticed something.

Lying on the dashboard was a pouch of instant curry, which Yoshio had bought on their prior shopping run but forgotten to take out of the car.

In Japan, you can buy these instant curry pouches at any supermarket or convenience store. They’re a staple food of budget-strapped students and lazy bachelors, and you prepare them either by boiling the unopened pouch in a pot of water, or by pouring the liquid contents into a bowl and heating it in the microwave. As our hungry reporters looked at the pouch, sitting underneath the car’s windshield and its white-hot sun glare, they wondered…could all that heat have cooked it?

After all, the temperature outside was 34.5 degrees Celsius (94.1 degrees Fahrenheit), and the curry had been sitting there for well over an hour as they cooked and ate the bacon and monjayaki. Seiji reached in to pick up the curry pouch, and as soon as he touched it with his fingertips, searing bolts of pain ran through his hand and up to his elbow from the heat of the plastic packaging.

As Seiji made his second, more cautious attempt to retrieve the curry, Yoshio went off to procure some rice, returning shortly after using his wit and guile to obtain a plate of fluffy white curry canvas. Seiji then tore open the pack, poured out its contents…

…and took a bite.

He chewed thoughtfully, swallowed, and pronounced it…


“It pretty much has the same taste and texture as if you’d boiled or microwaved it,” he said, cheerfully taking another bite.

So there you have it: not only can we harness the power of Japan’s sun this summer to flat-grill food, but also to do pretty much all the work of making instant chow for us. However, while Yoshio and Seiji are yet to show any signs of adverse health from their car-created cuisine, we still recommend cooking your food the orthodox, in-the-kitchen-way.

Photos ©SoraNews24
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