The beauty of recreating dishes is that it forces you out of your self-imposed fence of familiarity. Every time, I'm working with unfamiliar ingredients and methods or familiar ingredients with a twist. Doing so, allows you to grow. A method tried and tested by Masterchef contestants, I'm sure. Speaking of, my mum mentioned I should try out, not that I'm any good but because she believes that possessing a skill or a hobby should reap benefits. And as much as I enjoy yelling at the TV over second embarrassment over a contestant's trivial mistake, I would be ten times worse. I'd be that contestant. no not the one that masters something that takes professionals to master over years within the span of a few minutes - the one that's more like, 'what is that burning smell, shit, I forgot something in the oven' or the one that forgets the key ingredient in a particular challenge and the one that royally screws up. That's me. Enough about me, let's talk about this.
What is the ideal breakfast? As Megumi highlighted, it can't be too voluminous nor heavy. Perhaps something gentle on the digestive system. This dish is the perfect solution. Everything bite sized because opening your mouth just that additional fraction requires far too much effort, the ingredients themselves are on the lighter, lower caloric scale and visually, it's stunning.
The key point in this recipe is that everything is uniform. So cut every ingredient bite sized and identical! Cut daikon cook in the microwave on high for 3-5 minutes.
Boil water and cook quail eggs for 2-3 minutes. Place in bowl of cold water and carefully peel.
Use a flower cutter, don't be crazy like me. Of half crazy as you can clearly see where I gave up.
Boil sliced konyaku for 2 mins, drain.
Slice 2 chikuwa.
To make the mochi kinchaku, wash aburaage in boiled water to rid of excess oilness. Slice from the end and carefully peel back to form a pouch. Slice 1 kirimochi cake in 4. In each pouch, place 1 peeled quail egg, 1/4 kirimochi and a pinch of salt.
Tie with garlic chives.
Do as I say, and not as I do. Bring the dashi broth to boil with 1 1/2 tblsp of sugar, mirin, sake and soy sauce. Add the rest of the ingredients (including sliced baby octopus) save for the brussel sprouts (add in the last ten minutes of cooking to save them from becoming bitter) and the hanpen. Boil for minimum 1 hour. The oden tastes better with time as the flavours are allowed to absorb.
Slice hanpen when ready to serve
At this stage, add the brussel sprouts. Taste oden for seasoning, add salt if necessary. ta dahhh! You're done! (Octopus turns purple when cooked.. interesting). Ladle into bowl, smear lip with mustard and enjoy!
Tadokoro Megumi's Bize Size Breakfast Oden Recipe
8 quail eggs
8 brussel sprouts
300g baby octopus
2 satsuma age
For the mochi kinchaku
4 quail eggs (cooked from the 8)
garlic chives (do not use the spring onions pictured! They will not be able to form a firm knot!)
1L dashi stock
1 1/2 tblsp of sugar, sake and mirin
1 tblsp soy sauce
- Slice daikon, carrot, konyaku, baby octopus, satsuma age, hanpen and chikuwa to uniform, bite sized pieces,
- Microwave daikon on high for 3-5 minutes.
- Boil quail eggs for 2-3 minutes. Submerge in cold water and peel.
- Boil konyaku for 2 minutes, strain.
- Slice kirimochi into 4 equal pieces, Slice the ends of the aburaage, and carefully pull apart to form a pouch. In each, place 1 quail egg, kirimochi quarter and a pinch of salt. Tie closed with garlic chive.
- Bring broth ingredients to a boil. Add the rest of the ingredients except for hanpen and add brussel sprouts in the last 10 minutes of cooking.
- Simmer for at least an hour
- Serve in a bowl and enjoy!