1/2 of recipe: 17 calories; 1.7 g protein; 0.3 g fat; 2.8 g carbohydrate; 0.7 g net carbs; 83 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 2.1 g fiber
Small handful shungiku garland chrysanthemum (36 g in photo)
1.5 g dried kikka (kikuka) chrysanthemum flowers
For ohitashi marinade
150 cc dashi
3/4 tsp usukuchi soy sauce
1/2 tsp shiokoji salted rice malt
Mix all ingredients for ohitashi marinade, and set aside.
Bring plenty of water to boil to blanch leafy greens and to rehydrate dried chrysanthemum flowers.
Place flowers in a prep bowl, and pour some boiling water to rehydrate.
Blanch green vegetables.
Here, shungiku leaves are cut or torn into 3-4 cm, put in a basket, and quickly blanched until color brightens.
In the same boiling water, blanch spinach, putting stem ends first.
Likewise, squeeze out excess water from shungiku, and put in ohitashi marinade.
About 30 minutes to 1 hour prior to serving, bring ohitashi out of the fridge.
Add chrysanthemum flowers, and gently mix.
- Make sure dashi or ohitashi marinade is cold or at least cool to room temperature before soaking vegetables.
- As vegetables soaked longer (half a day to overnight) would naturally taste saltier, the above seasoning is relatively light. If serving this within a few hours, taste before serving, and add a tiny amount of shiokoji or salt to adjust the taste.
- If usukuchi soy sauce is not available, regular soy sauce works fine. If using regular soy sauce, you might want to use slightly more shiokoji or salt (and less soy sauce if retaining vegetable color is a concern).
- Among edible chrysanthemum flowers, yellow flowers, which often appear as garnish on sashimi plates, are more common than magenta or reddish purple flowers.
- Yellow edible chrysanthemum flowers are available year around as kikunori (dried chrysanthemum flower sheets; a round sheet folded into a square in photo at right). Basically, 1 gram of kikunori is equivalent to 1 chrysanthemum flower.
- The above nutrition figures are based on the assumption that 31% of ohitashi marinade is consumed with the vegetables, which are marinated for 3 hours.
- The other, more commonly known name for September in the old calendar is nagatsuki [lit. long month]. The Gregorian calendar was adopted in 1873 as the official calendar in Japan, yet a number of traditional or customarily events still follow the old calendar today.