Friday, December 16, 2005

My Slow Cooker Repertoire #2 - Oden (Japanese Hotchpotch) -

Oden -- the "must have" in winter

They say it’s going to be a very cold winter this year. I’m very happy that I have a slow cooker now! :D

Here’s another dish I made with slow cooker: Oden (Japanese hotchpotch). Nutrition-wise, this may not be an excellent dish, because many of the steamed fish-cake products in cheap “oden-kit” I used this time seem to have good amount of additives and preservatives, and not many vegetables are included in this dish except daikon and potatoes. But this is just a comfort food that we have to have in winter.

The ingredients this time were:
mochi iri kinchaku
・boiled eggs
ganmodoki (deep-fried tofu product)
・assortment of steamed/grilled fish cakes
konnyaku (see the gray triangles in the photos)
gyu-suji (beef tendon) on skewers

This site has a good explanation of oden and its ingredients (Scroll down). To add to the info. on that site, mochi-iri kinchaku -- the one that looks like a small bag tied with a strip -- is rice cake wrapped in abura-age (deep-fried thin tofu). My absolute favorite. ;)

If you’re interested, here’s a couple of tips for making tasty oden that I learned from a TV program called “Mega ten” several years ago.
・Some ingredients (fish cake products, kelp, tendon, etc.) make good broth, and some (daikon, eggs, potatoes, tofu-products) absorb broth well. Use both types of ingredients in a good balance.
・It is recommended to use konnyaku, if available. Though rather tasteless itself, it makes other ingredients in oden tastier. (The calcium hydroxide used to coagulate konnyaku is said to work on fish-cake products and make them more chewy and tasty.)

To be perfectly honest, I didn’t think the fish-cake products tasted any better when cooked in a slow cooker... at least, I couldn't tell the difference. But the potatoes and daikon!! They tasted definitely better!! Oh it was soooo heavenly. :D


Anonymous said...

My favourite.. Obachan..!!

boo_licious said...

Obachan, I love oden too! I will make it at home as not many Japanese restaurants serve it.

bourgogne said...

me too, i LOVE oden. my mum never put eggs in in though (that might be a regional thing?). i LOVE daikon in oden.

obachan said...

Mama Bok
I know that you like oden. Nice winter dish! :)

Wow! Do you put some Malaysian ingredients, too?

Welcome, another oden lover! :) Putting eggs in oden is quite popular around here. Daikon is my favorite, too. Have you tried octopus in oden? I’ve heard about it but never tried it yet.

KT121 said...

I really miss oden around this time of year...the pics of your oden warmed me up!I love mine with some karashi mustard.Do you?

obachan said...

Yep! I think oden tastes twice as good with Karashi :)

bourgogne said...

mmmm octopus. now i'm craving oden so i had to look at your pictures again and imagine it. :D (i wouldn't be able to find most of the ingredients where i live) :( though i will try to grow daikon in my garden. (of course, i'm a lousy gardener but nevermind!)

Reid said...

Hi Obachan,

I love oden, but never cook it at home. There is a new outpost of a Japanese restaurant opening near my apartment soon and they specialize in oden. I can't wait to try it.

Here's a link to the website, maybe you've heard of this restaurant before.

obachan said...

Good luck with your daikon! I heard that in France (or in Europe) you have daikon that is black on the outside. I wonder how it would taste in oden.

No, I haven’t heard of that restaurant, but their oden looks really great on that website. Lucky you! :D

Anonymous said...

Oh Obachan, I can't resist this, it looks sooooo delicious! I just love the egg whites in Oden... Hope you have a lovely christmas and new year.

obachan said...

Hi Keiko,
You're an egg white person? Just like my younger sister. :D
I wish you wonderful holidays!

Anonymous said...

i have daikon growing out of my ears and have been looking for recipes to make a yummy oden! would you be willing to share your recipe?

obachan said...

Sorry, to make the broth, I used the instant oden-dashi powder so I can't give you the recipe for the broth. The site linked in the post has a recipe for the broth, so it might help.