This is a dish I tried in my favourite Japanese restaurant in Glasgow, Nanakusa. I’ve never been disappointed with a meal there, the food tastes so fresh and everyone is so friendly. I can’t recommend it enough, really.
I usually try to order something different each time I go, and on one of my last visits I went with the negi sake don. It’s a simple, clean meal which you can jazz up or leave quite plain – the basic components are spring onions (negi), raw salmon (sake) and steamed rice (don). You can then add soy, chili oil, wasabi, pickled ginger and togarashi in any combination you fancy. It’s a satisfying meal that doesn’t end with you feeling stuffed and leaves plenty of space for apple sake or plum wine…
I tried to recreate it at home, after I got my last Foodie Penpals parcel from Lin that contained the most wonderful home made togarashi. I didn’t get it exactly right, because I went a bit over the top with the seasonings. My eyes were bigger than my belly, as they say. Here’s a slideshow of the photos:
I used smoked salmon instead of raw, and boiled up the sushi rice instead of steaming it. I seasoned the rice with some rice vinegar as well as adding all the other flavourings and seasonings. The togarashi was great, nicely spicy and with a good amount of seaweed – thanks again, Lin!
Having negi sake don is kind of like having a really big piece of sushi. I packed the rice in so that I could lift it out in blocks with my chopsticks rather than trying to eat it grain by grain, which can make for a long dinner time. It’s an easy meal to assemble with very little cooking time, just the ten minutes it takes to cook the rice, and while that’s happening you can slice the spring onions, tear up any big bits of ginger and make up your wasabi, if you’re making it from powder as I do. Then you just have to put it in a dish, pile everything on top and get eating.
The finishing touches were my gorgeous soy bird and my cute rabbit chopsticks – they make any meal immediately better, don’t you think?