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Osekihan (Sekihan), Festive Japanese Red Rice and Beans

(Osekihan (Sekihan) / Image)

Osekihan (お赤飯) means "red rice" (actually, 'honorable red rice' would be a literal translation, since the o makes it honorable). It's a holiday or special occasion dish in Japan, mainly because of its red (actually a very pleasing purplish-brown) color and the azuki beans in it (Beans are a symbol of good luck and fertility). It can be eaten at any time though.
Sweet rice is otherwise known as sticky rice, glutinous rice, or short grain rice. The Japanese characters usually used on packages are もち米 - mochigome or mochimai (mochi rice). Mochi is a very sticky gluey substance made by pounding the sweet rice. It is not the same as regular Japanese style rice ( うるち米 - uruchimai), which is also sometimes called short grain rice. It might be more accurate to call that kind of rice medium-grain rice; it's the same kind of rice in many ways as rices such as arborio and vialone.

* 3 cups of sweet (sticky) rice
* 1/2 cups azuki beans
* Water
* 1/2 tsp. salt


Wash the rice in several changes of water until the water is clear, then soak in fresh water for at least one hour, preferably overnight. (See this article for a step-by-step illustration of how to wash rice.) Drain the rice into a sieve at least one hour before you plan to cook it.

Wash the azuki beans. Put in a small pan with 2 cups of water, and bring to a boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes. Drain the beans, reserving the cooking liquid. Keep the beans covered so they don't dry out.

When the cooking liquid has cooled, measure it and add enough water to it to make 3 cups. If you have a rice cooker, put the rice, beans, water and rice into the cooker and switch on. If you don't have a rice cooker, put all the ingredients into a heavy bottomed pan, bring to a boil then lower the heat to low, put on a lid and let it steam-cook for 20 minutes, then switch off the heat and leave the lid on for an additional 20 minutes.

Serve at room temperature with a sprinkling of gomashio.

posted by jsato at 07:00| Comment(0) | Recipe | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする




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