Wednesday, May 19th, 2010
This spring I was able to get my hands on some fuki (Bog Rhubarb). It's a spring-time vegetable that's been forgotten in Japanese cooking.
One of my grandmother's favorite mazegohan (mixed rice) dishes is fuki gohan (rice). The leaves are discarded for the dish so I decided to make a fuki ribbon okazu with it instead of tossing it. Fuki leaves are gigantic so I thought it'd be fun to cut them up in ribbons and cook them into a tsukudani
type of okazu (side dish).
12 fuki leaves or 1 cup of blanched and chopped fuki leaves. (You can substitute with spinach)
1/2 Tablespoon of sesame seed oil
1 Tablespoon of mirin
1/2 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon of soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon of sugar
1/8 teaspoon of dashi powder (optional)
The first step is preparing the fuki leaves for akunuki.
1) Boil a large pot of water and add a handful of ash or nuka (ground rice bran) if you have any. You can substitute with a tablespoon of salt.
2) Place a generous amount of salt over the leaves and press down lightly with the palm of your hands.
3) Place leaves into boiling water and stir the leaves around for 1 minute. You don't want to over cook them because they will lose their nice green color.
4) Drain the fuki and immediately transfer to a bowl of cold running water or ice water.
5) If you used ash or ground rice bran, make sure you wash them well. I find the best way is to hold them by the stem and swish them around under running water and repeat twice.
6) Sweeze the water out and chop them up so that you form long ribbons.
7) Heat up a pan and add the sesame seed oil.
8) Add the fuki and stir fry for about 1 minute.
9) Next, add the mirin, sugar, dashi powder and soy sauce. Try to add the soy sauce last because it tends to burn easily in a hot pan.
10) Stir fry for another minute until the fuki has absorbed some of the sauce.
Giant Fuki leaf
Salted fuki and press down lightly.
Drop fuki in a boiling pot of water with ash or nuka for akunuki.(Substitute with salf if you don't have ash or nuka)
Wash off any ash or nuka by holding on to stem and swishing leaves in cold water.
Squeeze out water.
Into the pan with sesame seed oil and seasoning.
Check out these fuki ribbons!