Kabocha no Nimono (simmered Japanese pumpkin) is a simple, basic Japanese simmering side-dish. Serve together with rice, or just stuff it into the bento lunch box for the kids.
The basic one is using water, for those who are into a deeper flavour, can replace the water with some bonito broth. It requires no oil.
Simmered Japanese Pumpkin / Kabocha no Nimono かぼちゃの煮物
550 g kabocha Japanese pumpkin
1 cup water
1 TBsp shouyu (Japanese light soy sauce)
1 TBsp mirin (Japanese sweet cooking wine)
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp ryouri-shu (Japanese cooking wine)
1. For the kabocha, remove seeds and those middle fiber with a spoon, make some irregular cut to peel off some part of its skin, cut into large bite-size, bevel along the edges of the skin side. Rinse with water. (note: after peeling & cutting, kabocha net weighted 450 g here.)
2. In a cooking pan/pot, add water (water level reaching about 80% the height of kabocha cube). Turn on to medium heat. Stir in soy sauce, mirin, sugar and cooking wine. Place in kobocha cubes skin-side facing down. Important: do not stir from now onwards.
3. Bring to boil. Put on drop-lid / I use baking paper instead (cut a few holes with scissors if necessary to release the steam). Meanwhile, turn to low heat.
4. Simmer for 20 ~ 25 minutes or until the liquid mostly gone but not completely dry and the kabocha soften. Remove drop-lid/baking paper. Remember: do not stir nor overturn. (note: the end result should not be some mash-y pumpkin.)
5. Remove from heat. Scoop the remaining sauce pouring on the kabocha. Serve.
Kabocha cubes stay on its shape nicely. It won’t break even when you pick it up with chopsticks. But when put into your mouth, it is soft, and completely well done.
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Showed here another one I did, the Kabocha no Nimono with dashi bonito stock. Real happy with the result too.