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


Hijiki no itameni / braised hijiki seaweed

A nice side dish to keep in the fridge for everyday meals and bento. The strong flavor makes it a great companion for steamed rice. Our favorite!

Whole recipe (382 g):
186 calories; 8.9 g protein; 9.1 g fat; 9.6 g carbohydrate; 8.4 g net carbs; 859 mg sodium (with reduced-sodium soy sauce); 0 mg cholesterol; 11.2 g fiber

1 serving (45 g; photo above):
26 calories; 1.2 g protein; 1.3 g fat; 2.7 g carbohydrate; 1.2 g net carbs; 118 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 1.5 g fiber


Approx. 20 g dried hijiki seaweed (18 g in photo)
1 hoshi-shiitake dried mushroom
1/3 medium carrot (42 g in photo)
1 large or 2 small usuage thin deep-fried tofu
1/3 konnyaku yam cake (71 g in photo)
200 cc dashi
1 1/2 tbsp sake
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp (+ 1/2 tsp) soy sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil (optional)


Rehydrate hijiki and hoshi-shiitake.
(Can be done hours ahead; if in a hurry, use warm water.)
When hijiki is rehydrated (volume increases 7-8 times), drain well.


Prep-boil konnyaku and usuage, and slice/cut into small (thin) squares.
Slice and cut carrot and rehydrated shiitake into matching size.


Place konnyaku in a pot, and dry saute (without oil) to eliminate excess water content.
Add sesame oil, and mix.

Add carrot and hijiki, and stir to coat with oil.  


Add dashi, rice vinegar and sake, and bring to boil.


Add usuage, and mix.
Add soy sauce, first 1 tbsp.
Mix, and simmer for 10+ minutes until liquid is almost gone.  
Taste, and add more soy sauce (max. 1/2 tsp) soy sauce if necessary.

  • Keeps in the fridge for at least 1 week.
  • Dried shiitake is optional. In fact, there is no must-have ingredient other than hijiki. Other common ingredients include boiled soybeans, satsumaage deep-fried fishcake (instead of usuage) and renkon lotus root. Blanched green beans, peas or other green vegetables (stems of leafy greens) are often added before serving for a vibrant look.
  • Sauteing with sesame oil is optional. I use oil to increase the calorie content of this dish. Using oil is also recommended when keeping the dish longer or using it for a bento item in hot weather.
  • If not using oil, this dish would be called "hijiki no fukumeni" or "hijiki no nimono." In that case, cooking starts with heating dashi, rice vinegar and sake; add all solid ingredients (except for usuage) and bring to boil, add usuage and soy sauce, and simmer. When not using sesame oil, calories and fat content would be 168 kcal and 7.1 g for the whole recipe and 23 kcal and 1.0 g for 1 serving. The other numbers remain the same.
  • The amount served in a little light blue bowl in the August 17 breakfast photo weighs 30 g. Due to relatively strong flavor, a small amount is quite satisfying.
  • In addition to use as a dish in its own right, it can be enjoyed as an ingredient in other dishes, such as mixed rice (photo at right for onigiri rice balls) and tamagoyaki omelette. When used as an ingredient, no or very little additional flavoring is necessary.


Anonymous said...

Very insightful blog. Please keep up the informative posts! Has been quite the helping aid :)

neco said...

Thank you for the encouragement. I'll be back soon.