Kindergarten bento – Spinach goma-ae (14/Jun/16)

Menu: Spinach goma-ae, simmered beef (dinner leftover), Okura/tofu/bonito flake salad, Boiled egg, Steamed broccoli

Kiwi fruits for dessert


Goma-ae is the type of side dish we eat frequently in Japan. “Goma” means sesame, and “ae” comes from a verb “ae-ru” which means to mix or to toss.  

The sesame marinade is very easy to prepare. Use 2 table spoonful of sesame seeds (usually you can buy roasted sesame seeds called “irigoma/炒りごま” in any supermarket here), grind them in a spice grinder to make sesame powder (or you can simply use pre-ground sesame called “surigoma/すりごま”), mix in a table spoon of soy sauce and a table spoon of sugar. Stir the three ingredients well, and the marinade is ready. This should be more than enough for a pack of spinach.

I usually boil spinach in boiling water (put the roots first for 10 seconds, push in the leaves afterwards and cook for a minute or so). Take the spinach out, place it under cold running water so that the boiled spinach maintains this beautiful bright green colour, and once cooled down, drain well by squeezing the water out of the spinach. Line them on a cutting board, cut into 4cm apart or so.

Then, in a bowl pour the marinade onto the spinach, toss everything quickly and coat the marinade evenly. That’s it!

You can also use green beans (15-20 of them depending on the size), or any other vegetable you like. When the portion of the vegetable is bigger, prepare more marinade, but just stick with the proportion: 2 ground sesame, 1 soysauce, 1 sugar. You can of course adjust this a bit to your liking.


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