Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Burdock Side Dish

Hello! It's 12/12/12! And it's the last time something like this is going to happen in most of our lifetimes, which is sad but makes today extra special (because the next time it happens will be 01/01/01... that's the year 2101). Anyway, today I'm sharing a recipe for a burdock side dish.

Burdock, which sounds like some sort of magic witch's potion ingredient, is a root that can be peeled and eaten. My mom used to make us this banchan (side dish) of burdock with soy sauce and sugar, which is similar to how the Japanese prepare it, except I think they also add in some sake. The texture is a bit difficult for me to describe but I'd say it's like a hybrid of bamboo shoots and water chestnuts.

The root itself can be cumbersome to prepare because it needs to be scrubbed clean of dirt and then the skin needs to be scraped off. However, you can find already peeled and shredded burdock, which is packed in water, in most Asian grocery stores. Though the texture is a bit softer and less crisp than fresh burdock, it's still yummy. This recipe was the first time I used prepared burdock and I have to say, it was just so easy, I don't know that I ever want to go back to doing it myself.

Ingredients:
2 cups burdock (cut into matchsticks)
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
sesame seeds for garnish
Start by preparing the burdock. I drained the package into a colander and then rinsed with cold water.

Next, heat up a nonstick skillet with vegetable oil and a little sesame oil. Then add in the burdock and let everything saute a bit until you start to see some color on a few pieces (2 to 3 minutes). Add in the soy sauce and brown sugar and toss to coat. Keep the ingredients moving so that the sugar doesn't burn. Turn off the heat once all of the soy sauce has absorbed into the burdock (should take 2 to 3 minutes).
And that's it! Just plate the burdock and sprinkle with some sesame seeds for garnish.
Here's the recipe page, if you need it:

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