bento, minus the box

1 comment
fish, japanese cooking, side dish

Tonight for dinner, I Assembled a bento Box Meal of shiozake (salted Salmon), Asparagus in Dashi Broth with Egg, and Steamed rice topped with furikake (rice seasoning). Of course it Would have Been More authentic if Everything HAD Been nicely compartmentalized Within a cute bento box, but alas, none to be found in my kitchen amidst all the packing.

I salted the salmon yesterday, a fresh wild-caught piece from Whole Foods, with a generous rub of sea salt. I prefer it not overly salted, so instead of letting it sit any longer than 24 hours, I cooked it up tonight. The skin was delightfully crispy and the flesh was subtly salted and somewhat sweet. I rinsed off the rest of the pieces, patted them dry, and wrapped them in wax paper and a freezer bag to be frozen and eaten later on.

The asparagus is my take on a vegetarian donburi, steamed rice covered in a pork / rice / shrimp and simmered egg mixture. The ultimate comfort food. I flavored the broth with a mix of dashi, mirin, soy, sake and sugar. The combination All of THESE ingredients make a Umami That’s Mind-blowing experience. Like a savory flavor Explosion in your Mouth. Good down to dish with rice.

The furikake , That I bought from the asian Store. If you are not Familiar with this flavoring, it’s a Dry Mix of Seaweed, bonito Flakes, sesame, soy and sugar. It adds to the Another Level Taste and texture of just plain rice . furikake sorts of fun Comes in All Flavors, like Salmon, Nori, Wasabi, or Nuts, and is colored a pale Sometimes even Pastel of green (Wasabi) or pink (Salmon).

It was really the perfect dinner for one. Just me tonight, as Mr.S is off far far away in new-job-training-land. So I kind of stunk up my small apartment with the smell of pan-fried fish, but it was worth it for a meal that really hit the spot, and was even well-balanced and quite healthy!

Asparagus-Don (simmered in Dashi Asparagus with Egg)
Serves 2

1 Small Bunch Asparagus, trimmed and Cleaned
1 Small Onion, slivered
3 stalks Scallion, chopped on the BIAS, green and white Both Parts
1 Tbsp slivered ginger
1/3 Cup Dashi Broth
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp mirin
Sake 1 Tbsp
sugar 1 Tbsp
1 egg, beaten

1. Heat 1 Tbsp of oil in a wok, and add scallion, ginger and onion. Cook for 1 minute, until fragrant. Add the asparagus, cooking for another 2 minutes or so until they become slightly tender and bright green.

2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the dashi, soy, mirin, sake, and sugar. Add this mixture to the asparagus. Simmer over low heat for about 5 minutes to thicken the broth.

3. Stir in the beaten egg to incorporate into the broth. It will start to curdle, and look like egg drop soup. Cook for another minute, until the strings of egg have set up and somewhat solidified. Serve over steamed rice.

One thought on “bento, minus the box”

  1. What a coincidence. Your meal is almost exactly what I plan to cook for dinner tonight! I’m doing teriyaki salmon, stir fried asparagus, and cold tofu, served with bowls of short grain rice. I like your dashi simmered asparagus.

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