Ohitashi (Japanese Spinach)

Try This easy Ohitashi recipe – fresh spinach in a tasty Japanese sauce. Simple, healthy, and cool, it is perfect for a unique side dish. Enjoy a touch of Japan on your plate!

What is Ohitashi?

Ohitashi is a tasty Japanese dish that’s easy to make. It’s all about fresh greens, like spinach. First, we cook the greens a little and then cool them down. We squeeze out the extra water to keep them light and crispy.

The special part is the yummy sauce! It’s made with soy sauce, dashi (which is like a tasty broth), and a bit of mirin for sweetness. We pour this sauce over the greens, giving them a fantastic flavor.

We serve Ohitashi cold, making it a cool and refreshing side dish. It’s a simple way to enjoy the natural taste of the greens with a touch of Japanese goodness. Perfect for a light and tasty addition to your meal!

How To Make Ohitashi

Ohitashi Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of fresh spinach (or other greens like kale or Swiss chard)
  • 2 cups dashi (Japanese broth)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon mirin (sweet rice wine)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Prepare the Greens:
    • Rinse the spinach thoroughly under cold water.
    • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Blanch the spinach for about 1-2 minutes until just wilted. Remove and immediately plunge into ice-cold water to stop the cooking process.
  2. Squeeze and Drain:
    • Squeeze out excess water from the blanched spinach. Form small bundles and give them a gentle squeeze. This helps maintain the texture and prevents the dish from becoming too watery.
  3. Arrange on Plates:
    • Arrange the squeezed spinach on serving plates or in a serving dish.
  4. Prepare the Dashi Sauce:
    • Combine dashi, soy sauce, mirin, and sugar in a small saucepan.
    • Heat the mixture over medium heat until it simmers. Stir to dissolve the sugar completely.
  5. Cool the Sauce:
    • Allow the dashi sauce to cool to room temperature. You can also refrigerate it for a short time to chill it.
  6. Pour Sauce Over Greens:
    • Pour the cooled dashi sauce over the arranged spinach. Ensure that each bundle gets coated with a flavorful sauce.
  7. Garnish (Optional):
    • Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over the top for added flavor and presentation.
  8. Serve:
    • Serve the Ohitashi chilled as a refreshing side dish.

This Ohitashi recipe brings out the natural flavors of the greens while incorporating the savory dashi sauce. It’s a delightful and healthy addition to your Japanese meal. Enjoy!

Tips to make your Ohitashi even better

  • Try Different Greens: Don’t just stick to spinach – you can use other greens like kale or bok choy. They all bring their own tasty twist to the dish.
  • Add Extra Flavors: Make the sauce even yummier! Add a little bit of minced ginger or a splash of rice vinegar. It gives your Ohitashi a zesty kick.
  • Sprinkle Some Crunch: Make it more exciting with crunchy toppings. Sprinkle on some toasted sesame seeds, chopped green onions, or a tiny bit of sesame oil. It adds extra yum!
  • Zest it Up with Citrus: Before you eat, try grating a little bit of fresh lemon or yuzu zest on top. It brings a fresh smell and taste to your Ohitashi.

FAQ

Can I use frozen spinach for Ohitashi?

Yes, you can use frozen spinach if fresh isn’t available. Thaw and squeeze out excess water before preparing to achieve the desired texture.

Is there a substitute for mirin in the sauce?

If mirin is unavailable, you can use a combination of a little sugar and rice vinegar to achieve a similar sweet-tangy flavor in the sauce.

How long can I store leftover Ohitashi?

Leftover Ohitashi can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. However, it’s best enjoyed fresh for optimal taste and texture.

Can I use a different sauce for Ohitashi?

While the traditional soy-based dashi sauce is classic, you can experiment with other light sauces. Ponzu, a citrus-based sauce, can be a tasty alternative.

Do I have to blanch the greens for Ohitashi?

Blanching helps maintain the bright green color and crisp texture of the greens. It’s a key step, but be careful not to overcook – 1 to 2 minutes is usually sufficient.

Ohitashi (Japanese Spinach)

Recipe by Wasian CookeryCourse: SidesCuisine: JapaneseDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

40

minutes
Total time

1

hour 

10

minutes

Try This easy Ohitashi recipe – fresh spinach in a tasty Japanese sauce. Simple, healthy, and cool, it is perfect for a unique side dish. Enjoy a touch of Japan on your plate!

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch of fresh spinach (or preferred greens)

  • 2 cups dashi (Japanese broth)

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon mirin (sweet rice wine)

  • 1 teaspoon sugar

  • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish (optional)

Directions

  • Prepare the Greens:
  • Rinse the spinach thoroughly under cold water.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Blanch the spinach for about 1-2 minutes until just wilted. Remove and immediately plunge into ice-cold water to stop the cooking process.
  • Squeeze and Drain:
  • Squeeze out excess water from the blanched spinach. Form small bundles and give them a gentle squeeze. This helps maintain the texture and prevents the dish from becoming too watery.
  • Arrange on Plates:
  • Arrange the squeezed spinach on serving plates or in a serving dish.
  • Prepare the Dashi Sauce:
  • Combine dashi, soy sauce, mirin, and sugar in a small saucepan.
  • Heat the mixture over medium heat until it simmers. Stir to dissolve the sugar completely.
  • Cool the Sauce:
  • Allow the dashi sauce to cool to room temperature. You can also refrigerate it for a short time to chill it.
  • Pour Sauce Over Greens:
  • Pour the cooled dashi sauce over the arranged spinach. Ensure that each bundle gets coated with a flavorful sauce.
  • Garnish (Optional):
  • Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over the top for added flavor and presentation.
  • Serve:
  • Serve the Ohitashi chilled as a refreshing side dish.
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