Miss Fats is getting REAL with you all. For those of you who don’t know, Miss Fats has a magical Obachan who is the master of all things Japanese and delicious. Check her out taking on the BIG bento box at Fuji Sushi: (people, that includes salmon and chicken teriyaki, sushi, sashimi, a heaping pile of tempura, miso soup, salad AND rice. girlfriend ate it all.)
Anyway, Obachan’s go to side dish—and Miss Fats’ personal vegi obsession since birth—is her crazy delicious spinach. You may be thinking: cooked spinach? How good can that really be? If you are, leave this site immediately and never show your face again. Because if you knew anything, you’d know to NEVER question the magical powers of Obachan’s cooking.
Now for all you sane folks out there , you are in for a treat. Miss Fats is sharing the simplest, most delicious spinach recipe ever. Get ready for life to change.
Now I know “foreign” cooking can often feel daunting: what with all the crazy ingredients you have to track down. (Fuck you, Indian food. Why are you so damn hard to make?!) But Obachan’s spinach only requires one “foreign” ingredient: dashi. Dashi is a staple soup base made of fish and is the secret to all things Japanese and tasty (well, that and Obachan wisdom). Most grocery stores carry it in the Asian foods section and its the key to pretty much EVERY Japanese dish out there. AND if you take the time to buy it (it lasts forever!), Miss Fats promises to share other delicious recipes that make use of it!
Obachan Spinach Recipe:
technically makes 4 side servings,
but once people taste this, its gone almost instantly. double it. or triple it. just do it.
1 bunch of spinach (you can use pre-washed bagged spinach, but I prefer the stocky stem pieces AND tasty leaves)
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp dashi
2 tbs toasted sesame seeds
1. Bring large pot of water to a boil. Roughly chop your well-washed spinach, if you’re not using bagged leaves. You want all your stems to be in about 1 inch pieces, don’t worry too much about the leaves. Throw the spinach in boiling water for about 1 minute, or until all the leaves have turned dark green and the water has begun to come back to a rolling boil. Drain spinach.
2. While the cooked spinach cools, mix soy, dashi and sugar in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in microwave for about 10 seconds or until sugar and dashi dissolve. Taste the dressing and add more of any ingredients to your liking. (The flavor should be well balanced between sweet and salty, but feel free to alter based on your taste.)
3. Optional Step, but Highly Recommended: Lightly toast the sesame seeds in a small frying pan on medium heat just until the oil starts to release. Be careful not to burn! Using a mortar and pestle crush the sesame seeds to release all their delicious oils and flavors.
4. Once spinach is cool enough, squeeze out as much of the water as you can and watch the giant pile of spinach you struggled to contain turn into a tiny ball. Mix the squeezed spinach in with the dressing and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
So there you have it: the secret to happiness. Arigato, Obachan!