Takikomi gohan is a traditional Japanese dish consisting of a bit meat or seafood cooked together with rice in dashi with some seasonal vegetables. In other words, It should translate to The Kid's Perfect One Dish Meal. I wanted to make some takikomi gohan in my new Zojirushi rice cooker but I wanted to adapt it to what i keep in my pantry. Although I love Japanese food, I don't really keep gobo and konnyako lying around the house if you know what I mean and I don't think they are EVER considered a seasonal vegetable here in Toronto. Again, lazy me also doesn't really want to travel all over the city looking for it either so I used what I already had. I also added a bit of miso, which is not traditional but we like miso and we aren't actually Japanese so I thought it would be okay. In the future, I can see throwing in some frozen peas, or julienned carrot and maybe switching the chicken for some frozen shrimp. I will report back. As far as what kind of rice to use, I like it with a short grain, sticky rice so I use this light brown sushi rice but you can use any sushi rice or you could even use arborio rice. If you don't like your rice sticky, use basmati or any other fragrant, long grain rice but it will have a totally different texture. If you are going to serve it with a vegetable that will not endure the long cooking time of the rice cooker, you can just steam, saute or boil it and serve it on top of the finished rice bowl. I like to steam a bit of baby bok choy, chop it up and drizzle a bit of sesame oil and soy sauce on top. If you put baby bok choy IN the rice cooker along with the other ingredients, you would be left with a terrible, soggy mess and unless that is the result you are working toward, do your vegetables separately and just plop them on top of the bowl right before you serve it.
This stuff is so good and it makes a really great lunch for The Kid to take to school in his new Zojirushi bento thing, which is, by the way, THE BOMB. I can't believe I waited all these years to buy both the rice cooker and the bento lunch system thing. Honestly, sometimes I am so cheap about the weirdest things. I will happily eat three meals out a day over the weekend but god forbid I fork out $75 for a kick ass lunch system for a kid who takes a hot lunch to school with him five days a week.
I really have to work on my priorities.
My Mixed Rice Bowl
serves 2-3 as a main dish