Japanese Recipe Roundup, inspired by Oishinbo

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Clockwise from bottom left: miso soup; ohitashi; cucumber and ginger pickles, marinated mushrooms and stir-fried lotus root; sushi rice

Well, my adventures with the food manga series Oishinbo have ended: I’m reading the last of books in the re-released a la Carte series. I can see myself continuing to incorporate dishes inspired by this series for a long time, especially for lunches. Here’s a round-up of recipes I have tried or hope to try as a result of reading this series. The ones with an asterisk next to them, I’ve tried and liked!

Rice:

Takikomi Gohan, mixed rice and vegetables.
Mazo Gohan, rice and vegetables cooked together like a pilaf.

Pickles:

*Cucumber and Ginger Pickles.
*Soy-Pickled Shiitakes. These deserve particular credit for being addictively good.
*Miso-pickled green onions.

Stir-Fries:

*Kinpira Renkon, Japanese lotus root stir-fry.

Salads:

*Ohitashi, spinach salad. Warning: this salad really focuses on bringing out the taste of spinach. If you like spinach best when its taste is subdued, you will hate this salad.
Hiyayakko, cold tofu salad. Omit the bonito flakes. One of the themes of Oishinbo is that Japanese food consists of simple recipes that bring out the flavour of the ingredients. It stands to reason, then, that if you don’t like tofu by itself, you won’t like this. I’ll try it soon and report back.
Shiraae, creamy mashed tofu salad with tahini.
Agedashi, fried tofu in dashi stock. Follow directions for vegan/vegetarian modification.

Soups:

*Miso Soup with kombu dashi.
*Oishinbo Miso Ramen – recipe to come next week!
Kenchinjiru, vegetable soup.

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