Tuesday, 5 February 2013


Donburi means bowl in Japanese but when referring to food it can mean a Japanese rice bowl dish. So when a dish is served sitting on a bowl of rice the name of the dish often ends with don (the abbreviation for donburi)!

Oyako-don (chicken and egg dish) and katsu-don (pork cutlet, egg and onion dish) are two of the most popular donburi dishes in Japan.

I made my own donburi dish one evening using leftovers in the fridge and was delighted to find that spinach and beansprouts go really well with tofu in a stir-fry. You can use whatever leftover vegetables you have at home for this dish once you have the rice and the seasoning. 

Serves 4
Prep time 10 mins
Cooking time 30 mins

Bowl of cooked rice per person serving
Vegetable oil or rapeseed oil (for frying)
Sesame oil (for frying)
150g tofu, preferably GM free (carefully cut into bite size rectangular pieces)
2 large garlic cloves (peeled and finely grated)
Thumbsize piece of ginger (peeled and finely grated)
150g Spinach/ Pak choi
150g Beansprouts

2 tbsp sake (Japanese rice wine)
3 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp brown sugar

Roasted sesame seeds or nanami togarashi (optional to garnish)

1. Heat 1 tbsp of vegetable oil in a non-stick frying pan on medium to high heat. 
2. Gently place the tofu pieces on the pan and fry both sides of the tofu until slightly browned.
3. Carefully place the fried tofu pieces on a plate and set aside.
4. Heat 1 tsp of vegetable oil and 1 tsp of sesame oil in a heavy based saucepan.
5. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for less than one minute (do not brown).
6. Toss in the beansprouts, spinach and finally add the fried tofu pieces.
7. Pour the sake evenly over the veg and tofu followed by soya sauce and sugar. Then gently stir.
8. Fry for a few minutes until the seasoning has absorbed into the vegetables and tofu.
9. Serve on top of a bowl of white rice.
10. Sprinkle roasted sesame seeds or nanami togarashi over the dish.

How to eat:
This dish can be served immediately with rice. It can also be eaten cold like a salad and tastes great the next day!

1. Freeze leftover rice in the freezer in portion sizes wrapped in cling film.
2. Try not to overcook the vegetables.

Please see my posts on Basic Japanese Ingredients to understand the basic ingredients used for Japanese cooking.
Basic Japanese Ingredients Part I
Basic Japanese Ingredients Part II

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