It has been a while since i’ve last had Japanese food and my little sister’s sudden interest in the cuisine and investments in a couple of Japanese cookbooks had me longing to make something from my ever faithful Feast of Flavours from the Japanese Kitchen cookbook.
Oyako don has always been one of my ‘safe options’ at Japanese restaurants whenever i order a main course. It’s one of those dishes that calls for such few ingredients- mainly chicken, eggs and onions- that you assume it’ll be hard to mess up. You wouldn’t believe how many dry, bland- or worse still both- oyako dons i’ve had that made me wonder why the dish is even still on my safe list. But you know what they say about people who keep doing the same thing and expecting different results.
This, this glorious bowl of comfort food, is why i keep ordering the dish at Japanese restaurants time and time again, in hopes each time that this bowl of tasty just set eggs and bite sized chicken cooked in a slightly sweet and salty sauce and served with warm steamed rice will appear before me.
Perhaps it’s time i start making these at home and just stick to having sashimi and sushis at restaurants.
Oyako Don (Chicken and Eggs on Rice) [adapted from Feast of Flavours from the Japanese Kitchen]
400g chicken fillets, cut into bite sized pieces
1 white onion, halved and sliced across the grain thinly
5 eggs, lightly whisked
100 ml mirin
4 tbsp Japanese light soy sauce
2 cm piece of dried kelp
10g bonito flakes
Cooked white rice, to serve
Japanese seven spice seasoning, to serve
- To make dashi Combine dried kelp and water in a saucepan. Let stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. Bring water to boil and remove kelp just as water starts boiling. Add bonito flakes in, boil for a couple of seconds before removing saucepan for heat and letting mixture stand till bonito flakes sink to the bottom. Strain dashi and discard the bonito flakes.
- Combine dashi, mirin and light soy sauce in a medium pan. Bring mixture to boil and add chickens and onions in. Turn heat down and let mixture simmer for about 3 minutes, covered, till chicken pieces turns white.
- Bring mixture back to boil again and pour three-quarter of egg mixture in, stirring it in slightly. Reduce heat, cover and allow to simmer for 30 seconds till just set. Pour in the rest of the egg mixture and cook for a couple more seconds till just set. Serve warm with white rice and seasoning, if desired. Serves 4