Ideal for New Year
Or for Cocktails
These Bento Mushrooms always win raves when served as appetizers with drinks. Of course, they are also traditional in New Year’s Bento boxes in Japanese cooking. Best made with Chinese style Black Dried Mushrooms.
12 Black Dried Mushrooms, Shiitake type
½ cup Dashi or other plain Stock
¼ cup Sugar
¼ cup Soy Sauce
1 tablespoon Mirin sweet cooking Sake
1 tablespoon Sake
First wash the Mushrooms, removing any dust and then soak in warm Water for at least 20 minutes to soften. Then remove the stems for another use.
Put the Mushroom caps in the Dashi and boil gently for 10 to 12 minutes. Then add the Sugar and stir to dissolve the Sugar. Lower the heat and continue to simmer for another 15 minutes.
Add the Soy Sauce and cook for another 10 minutes, then put in the Mirin and Sake and simmer over a very low fire until the juices are educed to a thick, syrupy consistency. The Mushrooms will have a glazed appearance and be very attractive as well as delicious with a pleasant crunch.