Itameshi Love: Hamada-Ya Bakery


Hamada-Ya Bakery inside Mitsuwa Marketplace in Torrance is my new favorite vender inside the Japanese food court.  Of all the trips my husband and I’ve made here over the years, I can’t believe this was actually my first time trying this Itameshi (“ita” is shortened for Italian, and “meshi” means food) place.  What a hidden gem!

This place is attached to the boulangerie inside Mistuwa (which bakes up amazing breads) and offers a colorful selection of cakes and pastries, in addition to Japanese style Italian plates.

Itameshi-style spaghetti with Bologne sauce has occupied a special place in my heart, as well as stomach, ever since I was a child.  I don’t know what’s so different about the Japanese meat sauce versus the traditional Italian kind, but the former is something I just can’t get enough of.  But I always overlooked Hamada-Ya Bakery because I always felt like I should try something I can only eat in Torrance (I can always make a meat sauce at home, whereas a bowl of ramen from, say, Santouka, is hard to come by) since we drove so far to get here.

Let’s just say I’m glad I decided to make a change on my last visit to Mistuwa.  I have to say that the food here is not extraordinary.  In fact, it’s just slightly above average, but it’s the closest thing to the plate I once enjoyed as a little girl in Japan, and that’s more than good enough for me and my hungry stomach!


Omurice (ketchup-flavored rice covered in fluffy egg — the word omurice comes from “omu” shortened for omelette, and rice, well, that’s self explanatory) is quite delicious too.  And our daughter loves eating the spaghetti with her bare hands!

Hamada-Ya Bakery (Inside Mitsuwa Marketplace)
21515 S Western Ave, Ste 146-B
Torrance, CA 90501

Vision Boards

Breakfast (10:00 a.m.): A piece of okonomiyako and some picked vegetables for breakfast. I made three jars of pickled cucumbers, carrots, and daikon last night.  Here’s the recipe:

Homemade Pickles
Makes 1 jar

① Chop your favorite vegetables (I used 2 pickling cucumbers, 1 carrot, and some daikon radish) into bite-size cubes and put them in a clean jar.

② Heat 2 cups vinegar (I used apple cider), 50 grams sugar (I used brown sugar), 1/2 tablespoon pepper corns, 1 tablespoon salt, and a drizzle of soy sauce, until the sugar dissolves.

③ Pour the hot vinegar mixture into the jar.  Put 2 peeled garlic cloves, 2-3 bay leaves, and 2-3 red peppers in the jar.  Close the jar.  Keep in a fridge for about 8 hours until they’re ready to eat!

Lunch (1:30 p.m.): Spaghetti made with king mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, onion, and green onion, seasoned with soy sauce, and a cup of freshly-brewed Dunkin Donuts coffee. It reminded me of a meal served at a Japanese coffee shop.

Dinner (8:00 p.m.): Tiffany, Shannon, and I went over to Roya’s house to work on vision boards together. We met Roya’s friend Stephanie there (she was super cool). I ate two slices of the pesto pizzas with two glasses of red wine.  The third piece was eaten by Roya’s dog when I wasn’t looking, which was probably a blessing in disguise.  Thanks, Albie.

Vision Board:  Here’s the Vision “Board” I made. It wasn’t a board (I used two scrapbook papers because I wanted it to be portable that didn’t take up too much space) but the idea is the same. These are some of the things that I’d like to accomplish in the next three years – do a hand stand, start a family, go to Australia (or travel around the world), stay financially stable, qualify for Boston (a girl can dream), to list a few.

I know that the whole idea of the Vision Board can be a bit cheesy, but I had a really wonderful time making this, with such wonderful friends.