This wonderful spinach gomae is a dish found in many Japanese restaurants and I always order it. There is something moreish and magical about the flavour combination of spinach and a salty-sweet sesame sauce, and it could not be simpler to make. When you buy the spinach, try to find the large-leaf variety that does not shrink so dramatically when cooked.
You could also serve the dressing with steamed broccoli.
This recipe originally appeared in the October edition of House & Garden magazine. Photograph courtesy of Nassima Rothaker.
- 1.5kg spinach leaves, stalks removed
For the sesame sauce
- 2tbsp soy sauce
- 2tbsp rice vinegar
- 4tbsp mirin
- 2tbsp white tahini
- 2tbsp ground sesame seeds
- Wash the spinach and put it into a large bowl, still dripping. Heat a large pan with nothing in it and add the wet spinach and a generous pinch of salt. Cover the pan and allow the heat to steam the leaves for a couple of minutes – you will need to occasionally toss the spinach to distribute the heat.
- When it is all wilted and cooked, drain and refresh under cold water. Squeeze it dry and then gently try to open out some of the leaves so it isn’t too compacted. Shape into golf-ball-sized spheres.
- To make the sauce, mix together the soy sauce, rice vinegar, mirin and tahini in a bowl, then pour into a low-sided dish.
- To serve, place the spinach balls in the sauce and sprinkle the ground sesame seeds over the top