Spinach Steeped in Dashi


despite this entry’s lack of written substance, i’m hoping that at least the photos (somewhat) make up for it, at least until i have something more definitive to write about:

soy-braised hijiki and carrots

soy-stewed chicken with vegetables

foxy soup noodles

spinach steeped in dashi

silken tofu topped with mushrooms

dark miso soup with roasted eggplant

crisp fried sole in spicy vinaigrette

rice cooked with ginger

a number of the japanese dishes i’ve been learning to cook seem to be missing something by the time i’m done cooking it. i don’t know where i’m making a mistake, but i need to work on the seasonings. practice makes perfect, i guess.

Here’s the recipe for the spinach steeped in dashi:

1 bunch spinach, washed and drained
1 cup dashi (you can make this homemade with kombu and katsuo-bushi or purchase at any Japanese grocery)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
katsuo-bushi flakes and sesame seeds for garnish

1. Blanch spinach in a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain and squeeze out excess water. In a seperate bowl, mix dashi broth and soy sauce.

2. Arrange spinach on a serving platter and gently pour dashi mixture over the spinach. Garnish with katsuo-bushi flakes and sesame seeds and serve.

3 thoughts on “Spinach Steeped in Dashi”

  1. ha, thanks dae.

    tara, here’s the recipe for the rice with ginger, although a word of caution – this is one of the dishes i made where the seasoning was a little off. the original recipe i used though is as follows:

    1 slice fried tofu, about 6 by 4 inches, sliced into fine strips
    pinch of kosher salt
    1 T sake
    2 cups basic sea stock (recipe follows)
    2 t soy sauce
    2 t mirin
    1 small knob young ginger, about 1 ounce, peeled and cut into fine threads
    1 1/4 cups japanese white rice, washed

    1. place a pot, preferably nonstick, over high heat. add the tofu and cook for 1 minute. sprinkle with the salt, stir, and continue to cook for another 30 seconds, and then drizzle in the sake. add the stock and reduce the heat to maintain a steady but not very vigorous boil. season with the soy sauce and mirin and continue to cook for another minute. remove the pot from the heat.

    2. add the threads to the pot and let cool to room temperature.

    3. strain the cooking liquid into a measuring cup, reserving the ginger and tofu.

    4. place the washed and drained rice in a medium pot. add water or sea stock, if needed, to the strained cooking liquid to bring it up to 2 cups. add the liquid to the pot and place the reserved tofu and ginger on top of the rice. cover, place over high heat, and cook until the liquid begins to bubble, about 5 minutes. adjust the heat to maintain a steady but not very vigorous boil and continue to boil, about 5 minutes more. remove the pot from the heat. let the rice stand to self- steam for another 15 minutes.

    4. just before serving, lightly stir the rice, tofu, and ginger to distribute the ingredients evenly. serve hot or at room temperature.

    basic sea stock recipe (makes about 1 quart):

    15-20 square inches konbu (kelp)
    4 1/4 cups cold water
    1/2 cup katsuo-bushi (dried bonito flakes)

    1. place the konbu in a pot with the water. let soak for 15 minutes before placing the pot over medium heat.

    2. remove the pot from the heat as soon as small bubbles begin to break on the surface and at the edge of the pot. add the katsuo-bushi, scattering the flakes across the surface of the water. after several minutes, the fish flakes will begin to sink. strain the liquid through a fine strainer after 3 or 4 minutes of adding the flakes.

    3. discard the solids, let the stock cool to room temperature, and refrigerate up to 4 days.

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