Again, another basic side dish that I learnt from my Japanese sensei last time. I simply love this spinach with sesame dressing or in Japanese called 'horenso no goma-ae'. Horenso (hourensou ほうれん草・菠薐草) is spinach, goma (胡麻) is sesame seeds, ae / aeru (和え・和える) refers to the preparing method -mix / mixing.
My sensei’s home cook recipe is super simple and basic, apart from sesame seeds which is a must here, only shoyu is added. Personally, I love mind with a bit of sugar. But among other variations, one can add either a bit of white miso, katsuobushi (bonito flakes), hondashi (bonito broth), or else, mirin. No oil is required in this dish.
Spinach with Sesame Dressing / Horenso no Goma Ae ほうれん草の胡麻和え
200 g spinach
1½ TBsp sesame seeds, fresh-toasted
1/2 TBsp shoyu (Japanese light soy sauce)
optional: 1/2 tsp sugar
Serving: 2, for bento lunch box 3
- Toast the sesame seeds with oven or on an empty frying-pan/wok over medium low heat. Grind it with a stone mortar or best a suribachi (すり鉢 Japanese grinding-bowl).
- Wash and cross-cut “+” the stems of the spinach about ½” deep (in order to cook evenly from the root to the leaves in a short blanch while the leaves green still). Blanch the spinach in boiling water for about 45 sec ~ 1 minute.
- Transfer (easy: just pick all the stems up by chopsticks in one go) and immediately soak into some ice water. Drain.
- Squeeze excess water (overly squeeze will render the dish dry, but excess water will get watery dressing, a balance would be not watery but not dry either). Cut away the roots. Cut into 3.5 cm wide.
- Use chopsticks, mix the spinach with grinded sesame seeds, shoyu and optional sugar.
- Serve on individual plates as side dish.
Easy, delicious and real healthy!