My son Stephen made a wonderful Japanese Spinach dish the other night that I just have to share with you - Spinach Gomae. It is a salad made of course with Spinach and a dressing of Sesame Seeds, Tamari and Mirin (Japanese Rice Wine). It is really simple and oh so delicious! We were having a dinner party and making various Asian dishes and this salad was a big hit.
2 packages (or two bunches) Spinach leaves, large stem pieces removed
Boiling Water for Blanching
1/4 cup White Sesame Seeds
2 - 3 Tablespoons Mirin
2 - 3 Tablespoons Tamari
Toast the Sesame Seeds in a small pan while heating water in a small pot to a boil. Toast the seeds until you can smell the toasted fragrance and they become golden brown. Remove and put into a Mortar and Pestle and grind thoroughly.
When the water is boiling, add in the spinach, stir and drain. Place spinach in a strainer and drain the water thoroughly. Squeeze with your hands to remove the additional moisture. Place spinach in a serving bowl.
Next, mix together 2 Tablespoons of the Mirin and 2 Tablespoons of the Tamari in a small bowl until blended. Stir in the Sesame Seeds. Taste and adjust adding more Mirin and Tamari if desired. Pour mixture over spinach and toss to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate to serve later.
Five Element Analysis
Spinach as a leafy green vegetable is a Wood vegetable so that Element is covered. The Sesame Seeds and Tamari contribute the Water Element and the Mirin brings in the Fire Element. The Fire and Earth Elements are missing so be sure to serve this salad with some other dishes that incorporate those elements to create a balanced meal.