Thursday, September 27, 2007

Recipe for ODEN

Sometimes I don't know if my blog readers want the recipes to the dishes that I post up and I usually wait until someone asks for it. It takes some effort to put the recipe down and it's a waste to post something up that people may not use.

Anyway, I'm glad Terri asked for this recipe. This is my favorite Japanese dish! Love it, love it love it!!

I've improvised this from the original recipe because it's flavored to suite our palette. The basic recipe is the same except that I've used some local ingredients, otherwise it can get very expensive to eat this on a regular basis. This is quite a big pot of Oden, you may want to half the recipe.
I like my Oden with lots of soup so you need to get ready a big enough pot to contain all these:

5 hard boiled eggs, shell removed (number of eggs according to number of people)
1 whole Japanese Daikon (white raddish)
1 piece of lotus root (lin gau cut into rounds)
2 carrots
4 US potatoes
2 packets of chikuwa (the local ones come in about 1" lengths)
2 packets of Konnyaku(cut lengthwise and then cut into twelve pieces)
2 packets of local fish balls (fried or otherwise)
1 piece Kamaboko (optional if you have enough local fish balls)
2 packets of fish sausages
6 pieces of atsuagé or I prefer to use Abura-age (fried tofu used in Miso soup)
12 pcs of dried Shitake (rinse and soak in hot water for 20 minutes - cut off the stems)
3 packets hanpen (cut into two triangles)

For broth:
12 cups of Dashi
1/4 cup of sake
2 tbsp of sugar
1/2 cup Japanese "light shoyu" - to taste (Usukuchi)
2 soup spoons of fish sauce (optional)

  • Prepare all the ingredients in "A":
  • Hard boil the eggs and remove shell.
  • Skin and cut daikon, carrots, potatoes and lotus root.
  • Soak and cut off the stalks of shitake.
  • Wash all the fish balls and other ingredients.
  • Blanch Abura-age with hot water and cut into half.
  • Konnyaku has to be blanched in hot water for 1-2 minutes before use.

Once all the ingredients are prepared and ready:

  • Prepare a BIG pot
  • Pour the dashi into the pot and add the rest of sake, sugar, shoyu and fish sauce.
  • Leave on medium fire and bring to boil.
  • Meanwhile, put daikon, carrots and lotus root into a pot of boiling water for about 3 minutes. Then add US potatoes (they cook quite fast) in and continue boiling for 2 minutes.
  • Pour away the water and add all the 'root' vegetables into the big pot of stock and continue to simmer for another 5 minutes.
  • Taste the stock and add shoyu and/or fish sauce to taste.
  • Add in all the rest of the ingredients and allow to simmer for 45 minutes. Don't over-boil, allow to simmer all the time.

Serve hot or cold with prepared Japanese mustard or Dijon Mustard.

Note: You can add seasonal vegetables, chicken or pork into your pot of Oden. Serve with rice or Udon noodles.

I hope I've covered everything. The links are from the ever reliable Wikipedia.

Bento #34

Yesterday, after school, I asked #1 to pump petrol for my car and take #2 to buy some more work books.

After they got back, they came into the house giggling and laughing (must have had a great bonding session). #2 said "Mum!, I'm putting on weight, can I please have more fruits and vegetables in my Bento box?" Before I could respond, she continued, "Look at che-che's belly" (pointing at #1's belly). "Yeah! Mum! Look at my belly!" exclaims #1, especially when I sit down, I have to shift all the excess into my jeans!"
Eh! Go to the gym lah! say I. "I only can go after my PMR! exclaims #2!" "Mum! I am having exams too, exclaims #1!"

"Okay, okay! Got it! I say". More fruits and vegetables you'll get. Surely you're not putting on weight because of my Bento box meals! It must be from all the teas and supper you have with your friends when you go out with them!

Sheepishly #1 says "no mum, I only drink when I go out, I normally don't eat anything". Huh! Don't I know you? All this 'mamak culture' with all the greasy foods. Starbucks and Secret Recipe doesn't help either.

We'll see how to change your menus. *scratches head* Another task ahead....


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