Thursday, May 7, 2009

Tanin Don (Stranger Rice)

Imagine that you were a foreigner and came to America and tasted a peanut butter sandwich and loved it. You could not speak the language so you did not know what it was. For the remainder of your days you seek it out. American restaurants both at home and back in America don't feature it on the menu. What was that? Where can I find it? Is it possible to eat something so comforting and common and then never find it again?

I ate the most sublime Japanese comfort food. I have spent years trying to figure out what it was even called. I knew it had the name "don" in it and that it was some sort of grilled onion and meat and egg combo served over rice. Every Japanese restaurant I have been to in the last 15 years, has been the source of hope and then disappointment when I could not find it.

I found it in a Japanese cookbook that I checked out of the library: Tanin Don. Now that I have it, I will probably find it on every menu out there.


1/2 cup Dashi stock
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp mirin

Combine Ingredients, bring to a boil. Serves 1. (Multiply for more servings.)

2 0z thin sliced pork loin
1/4 onion
1 egg
Sauce (see above)
1 serving rice

Cut onion thinly. Mix sauce ingredients and bring to a boil. Add pork and onions. Simmer. When pork is cooked and onions softened, pour beaten egg over evenly. Cover with lid and cook over low heat until half done. Place all, including liquid, over hot, steaming rice.

4 comments: said...

I believe it is oyaku donburi. I think I even have a recipe. So sorry I wasn't helpful prior to this. Who knew? Love this but haven't made it forever. Oooh, your recipes are so great. I need to get cookin'

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure what oyaku donburi is, but tanin donburi comes with beef and chicken with whatever veggies you want to put in it (actually eating it right now). I like the pork loin idea on this one. I never thought it can be made that way. Thank you.

Nate said...

Donburi (often shortened to "don") means "bowl" and generally consists of any of a number of simmered ingredients in a bowl with rice. The word preceding describes what said ingredients are. "Katsudon" (tonkatsu donburi) uses a breaded pork cutlet, generally with egg and onions. Oyakodon is chicken and egg (literally "mother and child"). Gyudon is beef. Tanindon is pork. Unadon is eel. And so on...

Anonymous said...

Actually, Oyakodon is not mother and child. Oya is parent and ko is child, so oyakodon is chicken and egg. Tanin in tannindon is unrelated. So it can be beef or pork with egg but never chicken with egg.