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


Tataki gobo / burdock root in sesame soy sauce vinegar dressing

A crunchy addition to everyday meals. The combination of relatively strong soy sauce flavor, rich sesame taste and mild sourness of rice vinegar gives this small dish a punch. Also a common item found among New Year's osechi dishes.


2/3-1 gobo burdock root (approx. 100g; 90g in photo)

For cooking gobo
300cc dashi
1-2 tsp rice vinegar (not in photo)
1/2 tsp usukuchi soy sauce
Generous pinch brown sugar (not in photo)

For sesame soy sauce vinegar dressing
1/2 tbsp toasted white sesame seeds
2 tsp rice vinegar
2 tsp sake and mirin in combination (equal parts; 1 tsp each)
2 tsp soy sauce


Lightly skin gobo, and hit with a rolling pin.
Cut to a length that fits in pot, as necessary.


In a pot, put dashi, rice vinegar, usukuchi soy sauce, brown sugar, gobo and (if necessary) water to cover gobo, and cook on medium to medium low heat until gobo softens to desired degree (several minutes).


Meanwhile, coarsely grind sesame seeds in suribachi mortar.
Add rice vinegar, sake, mirin and soy sauce, and mix well.


When gobo is done, drain, cut into 3-5cm, and immediately add to sesame soy sauce vinegar dressing.

Mix well, and let cool in dressing.

  • Hitting with a rolling pin is to crush and soften gobo’s dense fibers, and it expedites the cooking process and improves flavor absorption.
  • Dashi for cooking gobo is optional. I use katsuo kobu dashi, but kobu dashi (water with a piece of kombu kelp) works fine, too. Water only should be fine as well.
  • Keeps in the fridge for several days.
  • If keeping in the fridge to eat later, transfer gobo (and sesame seeds) to a container after gobo fully cools in dressing. Leave out liquid, as marinating gobo would result in an overly salty dish.
  • If preparing as part of osechi on New Year’s Day, make this between Dec 29th and 31st.

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