Friday, May 13, 2011

My Ochazuke

OMG.  I was recently impressed by Girl Meets Food’s post on ochazuke. Ochazuke, she tells us, means “submerged in tea” in Japanese, and is really a way to use up leftover rice by “slapping some hot tea over it.”

Inspired by her suggestions of additional ingredients that could make the dish more substantial, and in need of a quick meal last night, I decided to give it a go at home. This is how it turned out:

I started by brewing some Aveda “Reconfortant” tea (the last teabag of a box ), pouring that over leftover brown rice, and stirring in a teaspoonful of tamarind concentrate (purchased from the Thai Market in Silver Spring when I was on an Asian food kick some months ago.) To that I added cooked shrimp (I keep Trader Joe’s in the freezer), sliced roasted beets, slices of pickled garlic and pearl onions, and chopped scallion. Stuck it in the microwave for a couple of minutes, and had a fantastic  meal. I love the way the red of the beets leached into the tea.
To do this, I used only leftover bits and pieces I had on hand, so I encourage you to go with your instincts and use whatever is lying around waiting to be used up. This was a great thing to be able to throw together on the eve of my vacation, frantic as I am trying to get last minute things done, so thanks, Mary!

From tomorrow, I’ll be offline for two whole weeks.  See you in June!

Update December 18, 2011: Many months after my original post, I stopped by Teaism in Dupont Circle, and spied ochazuke on the menu. Since Girl Meets Food had mentioned Teaism in her post, I decided to try it out at the source.

To my surprise, the dish comes served as a pot of green tea and a bowlful of dry ingredients. I admit I was intimidated at the prospect of pouring tea over my food in a restaurant! But that is what I did, as strange as it felt.

Salmon ochazuke

Teaism's version was blander than mine, and definitely needed the crunchy seaweed toppings to perk it up. I think it is safe for you to continue trying this at home.

Teaism on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

Fairlington Blade said...

Sounds interesting. I'll give it a go sometime!