The recipe for Oyakodon, a Japanese chicken egg rice bowl, is simple and satisfying

Oyakodon (Japanese chicken and egg rice bowl)

Active time:20 minutes

Total time:25 minutes

Servings:2 to 3

Active time:20 minutes

Total time:25 minutes

Servings:2 to 3

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If a dish was a poem, the oyakodon would come pretty damn close. Preparation begins by slowly reheating the dashi and sending sliced ​​onions for a tumble in a flavorful broth. The eggs are lightly beaten and gently poured over the chicken thighs and softened onions. You can’t rush the oyakodon – patience rewards the cook with fluffy eggs, juicy chicken and a handful of chewable sweet onions. All the while, the sweet scent of dashi wraps the kitchen like a cozy, weighted blanket.

And then there’s the name itself: Oyakodon, a Japanese chicken and egg rice bowl, literally translates to “parent-child donburi.” The dish is a nod to the perplexing and still debated dilemma of the chicken egg. (Which came first: the chicken or the egg, the dish seems to be joking.) Taking inspiration from a similar Chinese chicken and egg dish, Paul Simon in his song “Mother and Child Reunion” , sings of a poetic reunion: “No, I wouldn’t give you false hope / On this strange and gloomy day / But the reunion of mother and child / Is only a movement away.

Like a poetic song, making oyakodon evokes intense family memories around the dinner table as well as the time when I learned to live alone.

These five months in early 2021 have been some of the loneliest. At first, I welcomed the quiet, exploratory change. With a kitchen all to myself, I indulged in elaborate dishes and fancy cakes, but found myself bewildered and crestfallen when I couldn’t share them with anyone. It wasn’t until I embraced the simple, unassuming art of one-pot dishes that I found myself returning to the kitchen. Skillet in hand, I sampled Japanese and Vietnamese comfort food and insisted on learning traditional Chinese dishes from my grandmother on WeChat.

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Soon, oyakodon made its way into my weekly dinner rotation. A comforting spoonful of egg, chicken, and rice was a reminder that food could heal even the most lonely pain. To this day, when asked to whip up my favorite recipe from when I lived alone, I pull out my skillet and declare it’s oyakodon time.

As with a favorite poem, there are many ways to interpret this dish. If you prefer more onions, cut more onions. Fancy a hint of spice or a slightly bitter bite? Consider adding shichimi togarashi, a Japanese seasoning blend, or mitsuba, a Japanese herb similar to parsley. And for an equally delicious vegetarian twist, the tofu will soak up all that flavorful broth. Oyakodon lends itself well to culinary riffs, and soon it may become an indispensable part of your weekly dinner rotation, just like it did for me.

Oyakodon (Japanese chicken and egg rice bowl)

Storage: Refrigerate leftovers for up to 3 days.

Or buy: Instant dashi and shichimi togarashi spice mix can be found in Asian markets or online. Mitsuba, a Japanese herb similar to parsley, can be found in Asian markets.

REMARKS: Chicken breast, cut into 1 to 1 1/2 inch pieces, and sliced ​​tofu take less time to cook, 3 to 4 minutes total.

For a crispier chicken, brown the chicken on both sides before adding the other ingredients. Then transfer it to a plate. Proceed with the recipe, arranging the cooked chicken evenly around the pan before adding the eggs.

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  • 1 cup instant or homemade dashi
  • 2 teaspoons of mirin (can be replaced with sake)
  • 2 teaspoons of soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion (4 ounces total), thinly sliced
  • 3 boneless chicken thighs with or without skin, sliced
  • 3 large eggs lightly beaten
  • Chopped shallots, for garnish (optional)
  • Mitsuba, for garnish (optional)
  • 2 cups cooked Japanese-style short-grain white rice, for serving
  • Shichimi togarashi, for serving (optional)

In a medium skillet over medium heat, combine the dashi, mirin, soy sauce and sugar and bring to a boil. Taste and season with more soy sauce and/or sugar, if desired. Add onions and simmer until beginning to soften, 6 to 7 minutes.

Arrange the chicken around the pan and simmer until opaque and white on the outside, 6 to 7 minutes total.

Pour the beaten eggs in a smooth stream over the pan until the egg mixture covers the entire surface. The texture of the eggs will look chewy, but that’s normal. Cover the pan and let the eggs cook completely, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the eggs become creamy. Uncover, sprinkle green onions and/or mitsuba, if using, over eggs and remove from heat.

To serve, divide the rice between bowls, followed by the oyakodon. Serve with the shichimi togarashi at the table to warm it up.

Per serving (1 cup), based on 3

Calories: 263; Total fat: 14 g; Saturated fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 315mg; Sodium: 331mg; Carbohydrates: 8g; Dietary fibre: 1 g; Sugar: 5g; Protein: 28g

This analysis is an estimate based on the available ingredients and this preparation. It should not replace the advice of a dietitian or nutritionist.

From Jess Eng, Power and Features Intern.

Tested by Jess Eng; questions by e-mail to [email protected].

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