Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Oyakodon (Japanese Comfort Food)

Serves 4 
(I double this recipe taken from

Oyakodon is a traditional Japanese rice bowl topped with simmered chicken, onions, and egg.  This is one of my father's all-time favorite meals, so I try to make it for him frequently. He describes it as, "Japan's version of meat and potatoes - it's a country-style dish."  This recipe is so delicious, and deceivingly easy to make!

Regarding the rice... My very good Thai friend, Lek, gave me some advice that I'll never forget. She told me that washing Jasmine rice (as you do with other types of rice) will diminish the amazing flavor of the rice, so cook with it unwashed! When cooking your rice in a rice cooker, the instructions will typically say to use a 1:1 water to rice ratio. This is true with washed rice because water will still be present... When cooking your Jasmine rice, add about 1/8 - 1/4 cup of water extra per cup to make up for the water not used. :)

  • 2 cups uncooked, unwashed Jasmine rice (cook as directed on the package, or follow the rice cooker instructions above)
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into small pieces
  • 1 onion, cut in half and sliced
  • 2 cups dashi stock, made with dashi powder OR chicken stock (if you can't find dashi)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons mirin (Japanese rice wine)
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 eggs

Prepare your Jasmine rice.

Place the chicken in a nonstick skillet with a lid, and cook and stir over medium heat until the chicken is no longer pink inside and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in the onion, and cook and stir until the onion is soft, about 5 more minutes. Pour in the stock, and whisk in soy sauce, mirin, and brown sugar, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil, and let simmer until slightly reduced, about 10 minutes.

Whisk the eggs in a bowl until well-beaten, and pour over the chicken and stock. Cover the skillet, reduce heat, and allow to steam for about 5 minutes, until the egg is cooked. Remove from heat.
To serve, place 1 cup of cooked rice per bowl into 4 deep soup bowls, top each bowl with 1/4 of the chicken and egg mixture, and spoon about 1/2 cup of soup into each bowl.

You will probably be sorry that you didn't double this if you're cooking for more than 2 people, so keep this in mind! ;) Enjoy! 

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