Tuesday, January 7, 2014

New Year Good Luck Donabe Porridge - LA Style

January 7 is a day of "Nanakusa" in Japan. It means 7 herbs, and we eat "Nanakusa-gayu" (7-herb porridge) on the day to wish for good health.

Because it's almost impossible to find all the 7 herbs for "Nanakusa-gayu" in LA, I improvised and made my own version of herb porridge with "Nanohana" (rape blossoms), which is also difficult find in LA but I happened to find at a Japanese market.

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My double-lid donabe rice cooker, "Kamado-san", makes wonderful porridge always.

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I used partially-polished brown rice to make the porridge this time and it came out really nice.
I got another good luck today!

Rape Blossoms Porridge ("Nanohana-gayu")
  1. Boil 3 cups (720 ml) water in "Kamado-san". Add the rinsed 2/3 rice-cup (120 ml) rice and cook over high-heat for 3 minutes.
  2. Turn down the heat to medium and continue to cook for 12 minutes or until the rice is just tender. Meanwhile, stir from time to time.
  3. Add 5 oz (150 g) rape blossoms (cut into 2/3" or 1.5 cm length) and cover with lid. Turn off the heat and let it rest for 3-5 minutes.
  4. Serve into individual bowls with salt on the side.
*Rape blossoms can be substituted with broccoli rabe.
*For richer flavor, you can use dashi stock instead of water to cook the rice.

Happy donabe life.