It’s turned chilly here since yesterday. It finally feels like November I would say. Coincidentally, yesterday was officially the first day of winter according to the Japanese calender. Despite the colder temperatures, it still doesn’t really feel like fall to me quite yet. More of a late fall feeling.
On a different note, Hisa and I decided to cancel our honeymoon trip to Thailand. If you’ve been watching the news, then you’ve probably heard about the horrible flooding that’s been going on there. It’s the worst flooding in Thailand in 50 years. It started up north, and has been gradually moving south. It finally hit Bangkok, and has pretty much gone from bad to worse, with no improvement in site.
Although the island in Thailand we were planning on spending the second half of our trip has not been effected by the flooding, we were planning on spending the first half of our trip in Bangkok. Plus, the international airport is in Bangkok, and in danger of being flooded as well.
We realized that there was a very good chance that if we went to Thailand, the airport could flood and close while we were there, consequently leaving us stuck in Thailand. We would then probably miss our flight back to the U.S., Hisa’s visa would expire, and we would have to do the whole visa process again <insert horrific blood-curdling scream here>. There is no way in heck I’m going through that visa process again, filling out all that paper work, paying all that money, making all those trips to the U.S. Embassy. Heck. No.
So, we decided it would probably be safer to cancel our trip. Instead, we’re going to be traveling in Japan. Neither of us has ever been to Kyushu (the large southern island of Japan), so we’re thinking of flying to Kyushu, and traveling back up north via bullet train, stopping at various cities along the way. It may not be as exciting as visiting a foreign country (I no longer consider Japan as a foreign country. It’s just home #2), but it’ll still be a lot of fun I think.
“Oyako” translates as “parent and child,” and “don” is simply short for “donburi”. It’s called parent and child donburi, because it’s simmered chicken and egg on top of steamed rice. Get it? The parent is the chicken, and the child is the egg. … Is that kind of morbid? Maybe. But it’s still really good!
This is a very simple, but delicious and filling dish. The egg is usually added at the last minute, and the dish is served with egg only partially cooked, but if semi-raw egg grosses you out, or you don’t have access to very fresh eggs (U.S. supermarket eggs do not count), then you can cook the egg completely before serving it.
Heat a little oil in a skillet. Add one chopped onion, and one large chicken breast cut into bite-sized pieces. I like to add a little bit of carrot, cut up into matchsticks, but that’s not normally in oyakodon. I just like adding a bit more vegetable to the dish.
Add 2/3 c. bonito fish soup stock (Japanese dashi, or you can use veggie or chicken stock), 2 Tbsp. cooking sake, 2 Tbsp. mirin (sweet cooking sake), and 2 Tbsp. sugar. I actually added a little too much stock here, so yours will have slightly less liquid in it. Bring it to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer, and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
Fill two deep serving bowls with white steamed rice (enough for one person in each bowl). In a small bowl, beat 2 eggs together. Slowly drizzle egg mixture over the chicken onion mixture, and turn heat to low.
Let egg cook briefly on a low heat. If you’re using very fresh eggs, turn off the heat when the eggs are not quite completely cooked, cut the mixture in half, and gently scoop one half into each bowl, on top of the rice. Spoon as much of the remaining liquid over each bowl as you want. You want some liquid to reach the rice, but you don’t want it soupy.
- 2 servings of steamed rice
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 large chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1/3 c. matchstick carrots (optional)
- 2/3 c. bonito fish stock (aka dashi) (or chicken stock or vegetable stock)
- 2 Tbsp. cooking sake
- 2 Tbsp. mirin (sweet cooking sake)
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
- 2 1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 1 green onion, sliced thinly for garnish (optional)
- In a medium sized skillet, heat a little oil over medium heat. Add onion, chicken, and carrot. Saute until onion is translucent, and chicken is almost completely cooked, about 5 – 6 minutes.
- Add bonito stock, sake, mirin, and sugar. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Let simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 5 – 7 minutes.
- Add soy sauce, and simmer for about 2 – 3 more minutes.
- Add steamed rice to two deep serving bowls.
- Turn heat down to low, and slowly drizzle beaten egg in evenly over the chicken mixture. Let cook briefly.
- When egg is almost completely cooked (but still partially raw*), turn off heat. Divide mixture in half, and gently scoop half into each bowl, on top of the rice. Garnish with green onion and serve immediately.
*If you do not have access to very fresh eggs, or you’re not sure if you’re eggs are fresh or not, I recommend you completely cook the egg before serving this dish. If you chose to serve the egg partially raw, you do so at your own risk. In Japan it’s quite common to eat raw egg in various dishes, but Japanese eggs are MUCH fresher than eggs in the U.S.