Friday, March 8, 2013

Spring Recipe in Tosa

   Itadori (Japanese knotweed) is a large, herbaceous perennial plant, and is also called Sukampo, Itampo or Dongui. Its stem has uniquered mottles and peeps out from the ground. You can find itadoris easily and pick many of them since they grow in colonies. Itadoris are gathered early spring, preserved in salt and served year round only in Kochi. Itadori has oxalic acid, making it a bit sour.
   Here is a simple itadori recipe cooked in Kochi.

Sauteed itadori
Ingredients (serves four people)
   300g itadoris
   3 sticks of chikuwa
   2 Tbsp sesame oil
   2 Tbsp sake
   1 Tbsp sugar
   2.5 Tbsp soy sauce
   1 tsp Japanese bouillon powder
   A pinch of shichimi pepper
 
1. After preserving in salt, soak itadoris in water for a day to remove excess salt. Do not forget to change the water a few times.
2. Cut itadori 4-5 cm long and cut chikuwa 5 mm wide diagonally.
3. Put sesame oil into a heated pan and stir-fry itadoris.
4. After some time, add chikuwa and sake.
5. Add all seasonings except shichimi pepper and simmer over medium heat.
6. When the stock is gone, sprinkle some shichimi pepper and serve.

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