Homemade Ebi Nigiri Sushi (Shrimp Sushi)

One of my favorite types of sushi is ebi nigiri. The shrimp has a very nice slightly sweet flavor that goes very well with the rice and it also looks pretty. Although most people think of raw fish when they think of sushi, the shrimp is actually parcooked for this preparation. I’ve already explained how to make sushi rice and shape nigiri sushi in a previous post. In this post I will only deal with how to prepare the shrimp. For this preparation it is important to buy raw shrimp with the shells on. It is not important to have … Continue reading Homemade Ebi Nigiri Sushi (Shrimp Sushi)

Japanese Mixed Grill

This is one of my favorite dishes from “Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art” that is surprisingly easy to make and absolutely delicious. As often in Japanese and Italian cooking, the key is in the quality of the ingredients. I used very fresh line-caught sea bass from the North Sea. You just wrap the ingredients in foil and cookt them in a hot oven for a bit, that’s all! It may not look like much in the photo, but you better believe me that the taste is outstanding. I adapted the recipe and made it even more simple, since there is … Continue reading Japanese Mixed Grill

Japanese Simmered Eggplant

I made this simmered eggplant dish as a side for the wagyu teriyaki. I adapted the recipe for Spicy Eggplant from “Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art” and the result was delicious. If you serve it in a nice bowl (as you should with any Japanese food), the result will be impressive even though it’s quite easy to make (if you had already made the dashi anyway, that is).  I used a western eggplant rather than small Japanese eggplants (which are not available around here), and I replaced the dried red peppers with shichimi togarashi because that is what I had on … Continue reading Japanese Simmered Eggplant

Wagyu Flank Steak Sous-vide Teriyaki

Recently I tried wagyu flank steak sous-vide for the first time, and liked the results with 24 hours at 56C/133F, but decided that I wanted to try 48 hours at 55C/131F as well since I was expecting that would be even better. Turns out my expectation was correct! This time I made it teriyaki style and it was outstanding. Please note that you could use the same method to prepare regular steak teriyaki, the only difference is that the steak would only need 4 hours or so at 55C/131F instead of 48. In this recipe, the teriyaki sauce is not … Continue reading Wagyu Flank Steak Sous-vide Teriyaki

Easy Chicken Yakitori from the BBQ

One of the first Japanese foods I fell in love with was teriyaki and yakitori. Yakitori actually just means grilled chicken in Japanese (yaki = broil or grill, tori = chicken), whereas Teriyaki means grilled & glazed (teri = gloss or luster, yaki = broil or grill). Teriyaki can be used for different types of meat or seafood, where yakitori is obviously always chicken. The sauces used to make them are very similar, with Japanese soy sauce, mirin (sweet sake), sake, and sugar as the main ingredients. The main difference between chicken teriyaki and yakitori is that yakitori is grilled … Continue reading Easy Chicken Yakitori from the BBQ

Japanese Fried Chicken, Drenched Daikon and Noodles in Broth

I’ve been trying more recipes from Shizuo Tsuji’s great “Japanese Cooking:  A Simple Art”. Since I had some left-over dashi, I decided to make two dishes that require dashi. I am not sure if this would be served together in Japan, but it did taste well together and I was well pleased with the result. I pre-cooked the chicken sous-vide for an easier way to get chicken that is cooked through (and pasteurized) as well as juicy, but the original recipe doesn’t require that so you can also make this without sous-vide equipment. The recipes make use of light Japanese … Continue reading Japanese Fried Chicken, Drenched Daikon and Noodles in Broth

Dengaku

Dengaku is Japanese grilled food coated with a miso topping. Basic dengaku is grilled tofu with dengaku, but since I don’t care for tofu (and Kees even hates it) I decided to make eggplant and scallop dengaku. The flavor of the miso topping is quite strong, so don’t use too much of the topping and realise that a small serving goes a long way. It is probably a good idea to serve this with rice, and next time I will serve either eggplant or scallops with dengaku miso, not both at the same time. The recipe is again from “Japanese cooking, … Continue reading Dengaku

Tempura

Tempura is one of my favorite Japanese dishes, that was actually introduced into Japan by the Portuguese in the 16th century. Seafood and vegetables are battered and deep-fried and served with a dashi-based dipping sauce. Just like with sushi you are probably not able to obtain the quality of professionally made tempura, but if you follow the recipe it should still be delicious! Making good tempura requires both some skill (to get a light and crunchy crust) and fresh high-quality ingredients. Tempura should be eaten as quickly as possible, so it’s best to make it in an informal setting where … Continue reading Tempura

Dashi sous-vide

Dashi, a stock from kombu seaweed and bonito flakes, is as essential to Japanese cooking. It is used as a basic ingredient in so many dishes that it has a big influence on the taste of a Japanese meal. It is used in many soups or sauces, including miso soup and tempura sauce. Kikunoi is a famous restaurant from Kyoto with three Michelin stars that has been named after the well from which it draws the water for its dashi. We ate at the Tokyo branch, where they use dashi made from water from the original Kyoto well. That’s how … Continue reading Dashi sous-vide

Home-made Sushi

Today calls for a special post, since I am very proud that the 100th follower has just joined this blog! As it happens we made sushi last night, and blogging about that will certainly be special as this will be the longest post yet with over 40 pictures! Making sushi together is a lot of fun, and although the sushi will probably not be as good as sushi at a specialized sushi restaurant, home-made sushi will taste much better than ready-made refrigerated sushi. It is not a coincidence that I like Japanese food besides Italian, as both rely to a … Continue reading Home-made Sushi

Steak Teriyaki Sous-vide

After trying beef short ribs teriyaki sous-vide, I decided to try rib-eye steak teriyaki sous-vide. The main difference between short ribs sous-vide and (rib-eye) steak sous-vide is that short ribs need 48 hours at 57C/135F to get tender, but steak is already tender and only needs to be brought to temperature. The teriyaki short ribs were a bit dry because the marinade had drawn out too much of the juices. For the rib-eye steak I decided not to marinade the steak before cooking, but only to marinade during cooking. This turned out well: the steak had a nice teriyaki flavor … Continue reading Steak Teriyaki Sous-vide

Japanese Chicken loaf with Eggplant and Ginger

My favorite Japanese cookbook is “Japanese cooking: a simple art” by Shizuo Tsuji. Since some ingredients are hard to come by outside of Japan and because I don’t have a very good reference (unlike Italian food, in many cases I don’t have a clue what it is supposed to taste like) I haven’t cooked as much out of this book as I would like to. One of my favorite recipes from the book that I have cooked many times before is the chicken loaf. Here I’ve served it with roasted eggplant, a ginger-soy dipping sauce and Japanese rice. This recipe … Continue reading Japanese Chicken loaf with Eggplant and Ginger