Friday, May 22, 2009

Japanese Night

A Japanese friend once told me "Oyako" in Japan means "parent and child" (I always thought it meant egg - silly me). In the Oyako don that you usually get from your normal Japanese eatery, this dish usually consist of chicken and egg - hence the "parent and child" combination. In this dish however, it would refer to the salmon and the salmon roe.

As a child, my dad used to take me to this fabulous Japanese restaurant at Kempinski Hotel in Jakarta. Their specialty was "Kamameshi" combined with fabulous grilled Yakitoris which basically means satay. Due to its minute size compared to the usual satay skewer, I always refer them as "mini satay". Kamameshi itself is basically rice steamed in a cyprus container with some sort of beef, seafood or vegetables. The rice itself is very tasty and full of Japanese flavours.

Ever since I moved to Melbourne, I have only found one Japanese restaurant that does this dish, but it's hardly something to rave about. So I guess I have to have a go at creating this myself. I don't know where to get the cyprus container nor would I even know where to begin looking for it here. After turning to my trusted friend, Google, I found a recipe at RecipeZaar that uses rice cooker to cook it. Brilliant! I say. Here I thought I will get to use my new claypot dish I bought from the courtesy of my mum's credit card (tee hee hee - in my defense, the eftpos machine wasn't working that day at Essential Ingredients, with no cash on hand, I only have my in-case-of-an-emergency credit card's). So I just use it to serve the rice at the end.

I adjusted the recipe for 2 and to use salmon instead of chicken. Please excuse the crappy photos, I left my SLR at M's house, so I had to use M's crappy camera.

Salmon Oyako Kamameshi
Original recipe taken from RecipeZaar

1-2 cups rice
1 cups chicken broth
1 cups of dashi (made from 1 cup of boiling water to 1-2 tbs of dashi powder)
1/4 cup onion, chopped
1/4 cup shiitake mushroom, chopped
1 fillet of fresh salmon, cut in 4 slices
Red tobiko for garnish
a handful of boiled edamame


1-2 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 tablespoons sugar
1-2 tablespoon sake
1 tablespoon mirin

Wash rice until the water almost clear. Drain. Mix all the sauce ingredients with the broth. Put the rice and shiitake mushroom in the rice cooker. Pour in the liquid and cook. In the meantime, boil a handful of edamame in a slightly salted water for about 3-5 minutes. Remove the pods from the skin. Once the rice cooker finish cooking, put the salmon fillets on top of the rice and let it steam no longer than 10 minutes. Remove from the rice cooker, stir in tobiko and edamame. Serve with a glass of sake, extra edamame, Japanese pickles or a simple Japanese salad of beanshoots in rice wine vinegar and a dash of soy sauce.

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