All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Nira no ume okaka-ae / garlic chives with pickled plum and bonito flakes

The distinctive taste of nira garlic chives mellows when cooked, but still holds enough aroma. A simple, quick and oil-free dish.


1/2-1 bunch nira garlic chives
1 umeboshi pickled plum
1 tbsp dashi
1/2-1 tsp soy sauce
Tiny handful (2 tbsp; 1 small pack) katsuobushi bonito flakes


Blanch nira, just as with spinach.


Cut nira into 3-4 cm.
Finely chop umeboshi.


In a small bowl, mix dashi, soy sauce and umeboshi.


Immediately before serving, pour the umeboshi-soy sauce mixture over nira, and mix well.

Add katsuobushi, and mix well.

  • Nira cooks very fast and can easily get mushy; make sure you remove nira from boiling water immediately when color brightens and cool in ice water. Remove nira when cool and squeeze out extra water without letting it sit in water, to prevent a soggy texture.
  • One tsp of soy sauce can result in a very strong flavor, depending on the volume of nira. Always use less soy sauce (or salty seasoning) than specified until you know the balance with other ingredients.
  • Likewise, some umeboshi can be very salty. Taste first. Use less than one umeboshi if you are not familiar with a particular brand.

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