Goma-ae 胡麻和え with Tatsu Komatsuna
Goma 胡麻 translates directly to sesame seeds. Ae 和え is derived from the word that means to cover with sauce. So when a dish is covered in a sesame seed sauce, this is considered Goma-ae.
Tatsu Komatsuna Goma-ae
Feeds 4-6 people
- ¼ cup of high quality soy sauce
- 1 ½ tbsp of sugar or other sweetener
- ½ cup of freshly toasted sesame seeds
- 2 Tatsu Komatsuna bunches
- sea salt or Kosher salt
- 1 tsp of toasted sesame oil (optional)
- Large pot
- large bowl with ice
- Mortar and pestle / suribachi (or food processor)
This recipe is very simple but simple steps can make all the difference. Our main goal is to preserve the rich green hue of the Tatsu using a technique known as blanching and shocking.
First, we will begin by placing a large pot of water on the stove to boil – a good rule of thumb is to have 4 times the amount of water than the vegetable; this will allow the water to stay at the correct temperature when the Tatsu is added. Once the water comes to a boil, add a generous amount of salt, you want the water to be as salty as the sea. This will look like an unruly amount of salt but most of the salt will be lost when the Tatsu is drained.
As the water is boiling, prepare the Tatsu by cleaning and cutting into about 2 inch bite size pieces. Remember that it will shrink once cooked.
Prepare your ice batch in close proximity to the pot of water and add the leaves and stems into the boiling water for about 30 seconds. Once the Tatsu looks wilted and slightly translucent, transfer quickly into your bowl of ice water and allow to cool for about 5 minutes, then drain completely and set aside.
Next, prepare the dressing by adding the toasted sesame seeds into a mortar and pestle. (If you do not have a mortar and pestle you can recreate this step in a food processor but withhold ¼ of the whole sesame and add as garnish as to keep the texture.) Grind until most of the seeds are broken down. Add this into a small bowl along with the soy sauce and sugar.
Finally, combine the Tatsu with the dressing until coated and garnish with additional sesame seed if you would like. Enjoy!