Roasted Ginnan and Ichiya Boshi Sardine Chazuke
塩焼き銀杏 うるめいわし一夜干し 茶漬け
Chazuke is a quick, simple meal, easily made tasty with a little creativity and often leftovers, then just pour on some tea and eat/drink it up! I prefer to use brown rice, genmai for chazuke (and fried rice) because of it’s more complex and earthy flavor. It is far more nutritional than white rice as well. I used some grilled ichiya boshi sardines and Miwa’s favorite, grilled ginnan nuts for flavoring. For a second course, tsukemono on rice, first with no tea, then with tea.
Chazuke is just tea, any Japanese tea will do, poured over rice, usually with something else for flavoring. Nori, umeboshi and salmon are probably the three most popular ‘toppings’. A plethora of packaged flavorings are available to just sprinkle on, or you can used your imagination and add whatever you like, or whatever is leftover in the refrigerator.
Ichiya Boshi Fish
Ichiya-boshi literally means ‘one night dried’, or, fish dried over night. After one night, and just a little salt, the fish is of course only slightly dried. Often small, whole fish are prepared for eating this way. I used sardines here.
Ichiya-boshi is one of those fish preparations that I hope to see adopted in Western countries. Eating small fish puts far less pressure of fisheries and as the bones and sometimes the head are often eaten too, the mineral and nutrient content is far superior to just large fish flesh.
In Japan, the very pungent fruit from the ginnan nut is roasted with salt and enjoyed as a side dish, often with beer and sake. If you like pungent, full-bodied cheese and nuts, you will probably like ginnan. The heavy smell of roasting ginnan in the kitchen is wonderful and strongly evokes fall and early winter in Japan to me. Ginnan are also used to flavor such dishes and chawanmushi.
Miwa and I love them and I roasted and shelled some and added them to this chazuke for a flavor that was wonderful and probably unheard of in Japan. (Japanese might look at that and think that it was created by a foreigner.) It tasted great though. I guess that I just want to show how flexible chazuke is.
Chazuke with Grilled Sardines and Roasted Ginnan Fruit