This dish is not so spectacular, so I was hesitating whether to post about it, but then I thought I don´t have any recipe for shio kombu condiment on the blog yet 😀
Shio kombu is a simple but very strengthening seaweed condiment which is quite strong in flavour (= quite a lot of salt and minerals = quite yang) so use it in moderate amounts, maybe one tablespoon with your meal… Shio kombu can be very plain, but it´s nicer to mix in some veggies, I used carrot and green beans. First soak (for two people) a 5 cm piece of kombu in half a cup of water, at least half an hour, and then cut it into very thin long strips. Boil it with about one tablespoon of shoyu and the soaking water, for half an hour. By then the liquid should be gone. Meanwhile cut half a carrot into matchsticks and sautee it with a pinch of salt and one tablespoon of mirin. In another small pot blanche a small handful of coarsely chopped grean beans, keep them crispy. Mix all together before serving.
I had shio kombu with two different grain mixtures – rice/sweet rice (with gomasio) and rice/oats which I had left over (sprinkled with dried shiso powder). The vegetable is sauteed white cabbage and zucchini just with salt and a little sprinkle of italian herb seasoning.
A couple of days ago I attempted to make my very first homemade gomasio, I was preparing myself for that for a long time!! I already purchased my Japan-made suribashi (ceramic mortar with fine thin lines/ridges in the bottom and sides) and surikogi (wooden pestle), both in the toko in Chinatown 😀 It seemed easy, all the recipes for gomasio are pretty much the same, differing mostly in used seeds (you can use basically any seed, but sesame is most popular).
So first you prepare a pan (stainless steel or cast iron; teflon coatings are not used in macrobiotics…unless you want some carcinogens in your food…) and dry-roast one teaspoon of high-quality sea salt for a few minutes, until it gets less bright white and starts smelling like ammoniac. You then grind the roasted salt in your suribashi with your surikogi (really, you need these tools for making gomasio, at least I think so). The salt grains should be crushed into very fine powder. So far so good. Then comes the next step – roasting sesame. You dry-roast 16-18 (differs per recipe) teasoons of sesame on your pan, that takes again few minutes. BUT be very careful to stir your sesame non-stop AND roast on a very low flame. Otherwise you will end up like me with dark brown, burnt smelling and tasting sesame (and gomasio…) 😦 Once your sesame seeds start to pop up, emit a strong sesame oil odor and change their color into a darker hue, they are ready to be transferred to the suribashi, where your salt is waiting. Crush together with the salt for a couple of minutes until 75% of the sesame seeds (god knows how you can tell – just estimate) are cracked open. It should smell reeeally nice – unless your sesame is burnt…The sesame seeds have to get thoroughly mixed with the crushed salt. And that´s it, voila. Your gomasio is ready to be stored in an air-proof container (preferrably glass jar) and used within two weeks (always make a fresh batch after about two weeks, otherwise it goes rancid). Next time I will watch my sesame with a hawk´s eye!!