October 25, 2010

Komatsuna Ohitashi, Komatsuna Goma Ae, and Ohsakina in Ramen/コマツナのおひたし、コマツナのゴマ和え、ラーメンに入れた大崎菜

As I said previously, real ohitashi* is leaf vegetable boiled and soused in dashi/soy sauce/mirin. I made real ohitashi for the very first time today.
One recipe calls for a dashi, soy sauce, and mirin ratio of 15:1:1, while another calls for 6:1:1. I decided to try a 12:1:1 ratio. So, I combined:
200 ml water
1/3 tsp instant dashi
17 ml soy sauce
17 ml mirin
Put them all in a pot, bring to a boil, and let cool.

Add previously boiled leaf vegetable and let stand for some time.

* Ohitashi derives from the verb hitasu (to souse, to soak, etc.). O is an honorific prefix (to be more precise, bikago (lit. beautifying word)). Ohitashi means something soused.
水 200 ml
出汁の素 小さじ1/3
しょう油 17 ml
みりん 17 ml



I personally didn't like it. I prefer having boiled leaf vegetable with ponzu and katsuobushi (dried bonito shavings). To my surprise, my children said they liked it. My wife also said it was good.

Komatsuna goma ae tastes very good!

Spinach goma ae tastes better, though.

Last Saturday, I made ramen for lunch. I used boiled ohsakina as a topping. The ohsakina soaked in the ramen broth was very good!

The ramen broth for 4 servings was:
1,200 ml water
100 ml soy sauce
1 tsp instant dashi
(dashi to soy sauce ratio = 12:1)
1 chicken thigh
1 bunch upper green, inedible part of naga negi (Japanese scallion)
水 1,200 ml
しょう油 100 ml
出汁の素 小さじ1
鶏の腿肉 1枚
長ネギの上の青い、食べられない部分 1把

Ramen noodles that I used:

Firm, aged noodles. They were good!


Arthur3030 said...

I'm totally puzzled by your claim that this is the first time you made real ohitashi. I'm an American living in the US and I've made this endlessly (the real version, I assure you).

Do you really mean first time ever? Interesting.

Hiroyuki said...

Arthur3030: The fact that you are an American living in the US and you have made the real version endlessly is much, much more interesting!! (laugh, laugh)

The thing is, the un-soused version is what I grew up with. My mother simply boiled spinach, and my father had a bad habit of "pouring" too much soy sauce over it, like so many other Japanese at that time (1960s). (Ponzu was unknown to my family then.)

Arthur3030 said...

Ah. Maybe it is, at that. This didn't occur to me when I posted :)

Anyway, I always enjoy your Posts. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Ponzu reminds me of some ancient roman recipes: mixing cooked vegetables or cooked greens or meat dishes with vinegar (or juice from unripe green grapes or squeezed sorrel leaves), fishsauce (modern times ask for nam plah - it is the same as roman garum/liquamen) and a sweet sirupe based on grapes. Taste buds are the same - even compared with taste buds 2000 years ago.

They would have loved soy sauce for sure :-)


Hiroyuki said...

Kiko: I can't go back to 2,000 years ago, but I can go back to the Heian Period, more than 1,000 years ago, when four primal seasonings were used: salt, vinegar, sake, and hishio 醤 (sauce made by fermentation).

The word anbai 塩梅 (lit. salt and ume (Japanese plum) vinegar), which referes to the importance of the two seasonings, is still used today (for different meaings).

The exact origin of ponzu is unknown, but it's probable that it was made in the Edo Period.

It's no exaggeration to say that soy sauce has changed the course of Japanese cuisine completely. This should be an interesting topic to discuss in the future.

Hiroyuki said...

Kiki: Sorry, not Kiko but Kiki!