Donabe Ginger Chicken

About a month ago I bought a Donabe. I've been seeing these Japanese earthenware pots all over town and always loved the look of them. But when I finally brought one home, I still didn't cook with it. I placed it in a prominent place in my office and occasionally looked at the pot. (I know: weird). I kind of felt intimidated (by a pot, haha!) because I didn't knew how and what I could cook with it. But yesterday I decided to start using my Donabe. 

After some searching on the web I found a website called 'Toiro Kitchen', completely dedicated to the Donabe. It's run by Naoko Moore and she listed a dozen Donabe recipe's on her site (she sells authentic Japanese Donabe's in her online store if you're interested). This is where I found the ginger chicken recipe. 

The recipe is so easy to make; basically it's a lot of chopping and waiting, some stirring but most of all eating! We finished the complete dish yesterday (combined with a simple salad on the side and some light green tea), which means; success! 

Donabe ginger chicken

recipe adapted from Toiro Kitchen

serves 4/5 persons


8 oz (240 g) chicken thigh (boneless and skinless), cut into small cubes
2 tablespoons sake
1.5 tablespoons light-color soy sauce (“usukuchi shoyu”)
1/2 tablespoons fish sauce (“nampla”)

2 rice-cups (360 ml) short grain rice, rinsed and drained
1 1/4 cups (300 ml) dashi stock (can be substituted with chicken stock or vegetable stock)
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 oz (30 g) peeled ginger, sliced into needle thin (1″ long)

1 scallion, thinly-sliced crosswise
some toasted white sesame seeds

In a bowl, combine the chicken, sake, soy sauce, and fish sauce. mix well by hand. Cover tightly and let the chicken marinade in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in the Donabe, combine the rice, dash stock, and sesame oil. Let the rice soak for 20-30 minutes.

Spread the ginger over the rice. Add the chicken with the marinade liquid and spread on the top.

Cover the Donabe with both lids and cook over medium-high heat for 13-15 minutes, or until 2-3 minutes after the steam starts puffing out of the top lid. If you want the nice crust (“okoge”) on the bottom cook for extra 1-2 minutes.

Turn off the heat and let Donabe rest (with both lids on) for 20-30 minutes.

Uncover and fluff the rice. Garnish with some scallion and sesame seeds.