There’s a lot of things I love about Japanese food and culture. One of them being that if you have the sounds down pat, pronouncing Japanese words is quite simple. Mi-ta-ra-shi Da-n-go.
They don’t seem to have all those confusing silent letters everywhere like the English language.
Another thing I love, is how simply some of their amazing dishes are to make.
Which brings me to: Mitarashi Dango
“Mitarashi dango is a type of dango skewered onto sticks in groups of 3-5 and covered with a sweet soy sauce glaze. It is characterized by its glassy glaze and burnt fragrance.” – wiki
This particular recipe I tried to follow is from Just Hungry. I say tried, because I’m just one of those cooks that doesn’t quite stick to the written recipe and just seem to go along my own way looking back for reference that it looks somewhat right!
Just Hungry is a great site filled with many traditional Japanese recipes, along with recipes from other countries.
Mitarashi Dango -
For the dango(dumplings):
- 1 cup (220ml) rice flour
- 1/2 cup (110ml) glutinous rice flour plus 1 Tbs. of cornstarch or potato starch
- 1 1/2 cups (265ml) or so of hot tap water (water that’s hot if you put your hand in, but doesn’t burn you)
- A pot of boiling salted water
For the mitarashisauce:
- 1/4 cup (55 ml) sugar
- 1/2 cup (105ml) water, with 1 Tbs. cornstarch or potato starch or arrowroot dissolved in it
- 1/8 cup (28 ml) soy sauce
- 1 Tbs. mirin
- 1/2 Tbs. rice vinegar
First, mix the normal rice flour with the hot tap water in a bowl. Then add the glutinous rice flour and mix. It should form a nice smooth dough that feels almost dry when touched.
Section the dough into 25 pieces, or take a guess at rolling them by sight.
Drop a few at a time in the boiling water and wait for them to start bobbing to the top. Once they, start to float allow them to cook for a further 3mins.
Transfer with a slotted spoon into a cool bowl of water.
Skewer the balls through the middle and place on a hot grill pan for some nice marks on the dango.
Unfortunately, I don’t have a grill pan so I made do with just a fry pan at a high heat. Seemed to do the job alright!
Now while the dango are grilling, mix all the ingredients for the sauce in a small saucepan.
Let it come to the boil then simmer allowing the sauce to thicken. It will thicken more as it cools as well.
Serve the dango still warm as they definitely taste better. Brush or drizzle the sauce over the top.
I served these to my other half, but he didn’t feel the sweet soy sauce complimented the dango very much – so I whipped up some melted dark chocolate and offered it to him again.
He much preferred the chocolate covered dango to the mitarashi dango. Personally I liked both of them.
Warning though, I tried to get these little suckers off the skewers to pack in my bento box for work – not an easy task! I think I’ll have to explore what other toppings and sauces would work with these rice dumplings.
I’d definitely recommend everyone tries this at some point, it’s so easy and delicious!
I wonder what other Japanese dishes are out there for me to try…