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Tag Archives: Black sugar

Thai-Style Basil Chiken Over Rice

Gapao Gohan

This dish is my homage to a popular Thai dish, pad gaprao (“holy basil chicken rice”; this dish is also popular in Japan, and we call it gapao gohan), and every component (chicken, rice, and egg) is made in a different style of donabe. This simple dish is so easy to make and really satisfying, so I make it quite often.

For the basil chicken, you can make it with any classic-style donabe, but I especially recommend Bistro Donabe. It’s because this donabe can be heated when it’s empty, so you can sauté the chicken more effectively with the intense heat. The sturdy flat lid of Bistro Donabe can also give a nice pressure during simmering. The main seasonings are oyster sauce and Ayu Fish Sauce, they bring really nice layers of umami flavors. While most Asian fish sauce (such as nan pla) has distinctive salty flavor, Ayu fish sauce is much more round and richer in umami. You can still use regular Asian fish sauce, but in that case, I suggest you use less amount of it.

For the fried egg, you can use a regular pan, but my choice of equipment is always Donabe Egg Baker. It’s so handy and you can make an individual serving (up to two eggs) fried eggs in a short time.


Matcha Almond Milk Kudzu Jelly

Matcha Almond Milk Kuzu Mochi

This is one of my favorite cold desserts. It’s very simple to make and the flavor is so rich and elegant. The key is a high quality matcha and kudzu powder (plant based starch – the kind I use is considered to be among the top quality kind from Yoshino region of Nara, Japan). The texture is nicely bouncy and the flavor is so rich, although there is no butter or cream used. In fact, it’s completely vegan. Kuzu mochi is a traditional Japanese dessert, made of simply kudzu powder and water. And, this is my variation which has matcha and almond milk. You can make it one day in advance, so this makes a nice dessert when you have a dinner party.


Iced Matcha Latte

This is absolutely my go-to drink to refresh and relax at the same time on a warm day. In the summertime, I actually make this every day after I come back home from work and enjoy in the kitchen during prepping for dinner. I normally make it with unsweetened almond milk, but you can make it with soymilk, whole milk, or any choice of milk. The matcha I use is a premium quality and I use a generous amount of it, so I hope you try this recipe and find how upgraded this drink tastes compared to commercial matcha drinks. 


Steamed Green Beans and Potatoes in Sesame Peanut Butter Sauce

This simple steamed dish is always a big hit when I serve to my guests, and everybody loves watching the process of making it, too. When the potatoes and green beans are steamed in donabe, they tend to retain both the nutrients and texture, while the flavor becomes so rich and pure. To make the sauce, the sesame seeds are first roasted in horoku (sesame roster) until fragrant, then they are ground in suribachi and surikogi (Japanese mortar and pestle) and mixed with seasonings. The steamed vegetables are added directly to the sauce in the suribachi and tossed together. And, you can serve it right out of it at the table. Sesame and peanut butter add nice richness to the dish. For the sauce, I normally add leftover dashi (either kombu & shiitake mushroom dashi or kombu & bonito dashi) for extra subtle layer of flavors, but you can totally go with just water, if you don’t have dashi and it would still taste delicious.


Pork and Napa Cabbage Mille Feuille

Buta to Hakusai no Mille Feuille Nabe

This dish is all about pork and napa cabbage, cooked in a minimum way. They are simply layered to pack in a donabe, with a small amount of water and sake. There is not even dashi or salt. You can top them with some sliced ginger and mushrooms, and gently simmer for 25 – 30 minutes. The result is a tasty treat rich in umami, and it looks beautiful, too. The soup is also packed with all the natural flavors from the ingredients, so make sure to enjoy it with the dish, too.

I like to serve it with Sansho Ponzu Sauce and Hatcho Miso & Black Sesame Sauce (recipe below) for flavor variations. Or, you can simply serve it with yuzu-kosho or Kanzuri, too.


Korean-style Spicy Miso Condiment

Ssamjang

This Korean-inspird spicy miso sauce is great with grilled or steamed meat, seafood, or even as a dipping for vegetable crudités (fresh vegetable sticks). I love serving this especially with grilled kalbi (beef short ribs) or steamed pork shoulder to make lettuce wraps. Both the hatcho miso and Okinawa black sugar make the flavor so deep, but you can also make with regular miso and brown sugar, if you like.


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