…I don’t expect you to follow the recipes to the letter. I’d be happier just knowing they give you new ideas and brighten your day-to-day cooking… -Nobu’s Vegetarian Cookbook, p. 9.
So there was some remaining fresh spinach in my refridgerator crisper. What to do? So, I went through my copy of Nobu’s Vegetarian Cookbook and came across Dashi-Marinated Vegetables (p. 48-49). I started thinking, “Spinach. Ohitashi. Dashi, soy sauce….may be I can do this….”. As I read through article, a basic marinade pattern began to emerge – blanched vegetables, 8 parts kombu dashi, 1 part usukuchi soy sauce, 1 part mirin.
At this point, I thought, “Let’s do ohitashi this way; drop the mirin.” The spinach was the regular, not baby variety and so I trimmed the stems, plunged them spinach three or four times to get rid of the sand.
I then blanched the spinach for about 2 minutes, shocked them and then set them aside.
While the spinach was resting, I made some dashi, extracted two cups. To the two cups (16 oz) of dashi, I added 2 oz of usukuchi soy sauce (recall the 8:1 ratio) and brought that back to a boil.
Into a smaller pot, I placed the spinach, drained of excess water, and then poured the dashi/soy
mixture over it. At that point, I covered the pot and let it cool and marinate for about 4 hours.
When it was all done, I placed it in a bowl to be served along side my steamed lobster dinner! I was very happy with the results. It very much tasted what I would expect in Japanese restaurants. Better yet, it didn’t have that sweet background taste that you get in some versions. Matsuhisa-sama, thank you for sharing the recipe/technique for dashi marinated vegetables!