I love going to Mitsuwa (Japanese supermarket). There are always new and interesting stuffs to look at, like weird sauces, many different kinds of fish cakes, fruits that I have never seen before, and tasty drinks. But, it is a dangerous place for Bryan and I. Whenever we were there, we came home with tons of candies and snacks. One time, I bought home 4 bags of green tea Kit Kat. Oops! Don’t worry. We didn’t eat them all. We gave most to Bryan’s boss, who loves green tea anything. He is so addicted that he can’t keep his hands off those green tea goodies.
Other than candies, there are a good selection of take out food. Sushi, sushi rice bowl, bento box, bibimbap, Onigiri (rice balls) etc. A few weeks ago, I saw a special item, the unagi don (eel rice bowl). I don’t eat eel often. It is a fish that I sometimes like and sometimes don’t. I sometimes have the problem with the bones. But it really depends on the piece of fish you got. Some bones are so tiny that they are unnoticeable. Some are just little bigger that may not be unpleasant to eat for certain people. It is a personal preference. Any way, that unagi don that I saw was so pretty. I couldn’t resist. I got it and really enjoyed it. I ended up making them at home. It is super easy and taste just the same.
Eel is a fish that you have to try. They are soft and flaky. The sweet unagi sauce definitely brought out the best of eel. Served the eel over rice. Add some salmon roe and green onion. The salmon roe is like some salty boba that explode in your mouth. Great compliment to the sweet eel. Green onion add some freshness. Most importantly, this eel bowl can be made in less than 20 minutes. It is a convenience meal for busy weekday dinner.
Unagi Don (Eel Rice Bowl) (Adapted from Just One Cookbook)
– 1 whole eel fillet (8 – 10 ounce)
– vegetable oil
– 3 cups hot cooked rice
– 2 green onions (finely chopped)
– ¼ cup salmon roe (optional)
– ¼ cup soy sauce
– ¼ cup mirin (Japanese rice wine)
– 2½ tablespoons sugar
– 1½ tablespoon sake
- In a small saucepan, combine mirin and sake. Bring to a boil. Stir in sugar and cook until completely dissolved. Add soy sauce. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Taste and adjust with more sugar or soy sauce if needed. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly brush with oil.
- Cut the eel into 2 or 3 parts to fit the serving bowls. Place them on the prepared baking sheet. Transfer to the middle rack of a cold oven. Turn the heat to the broil setting. Cook for 8 minutes. Brush a good layer of unagi sauce over the eel. Continue to cook for 1 – 2 minutes or until there are bubbles on top of the eel.
- Place the cooked rice in the serving bowls. Brush with some unagi sauce on the rice. Place the eel on top of the rice. Brush with more sauce if necessary. Top with salmon roe and green onion. Serve immediately.
- The eel fillet can be bought from Japanese supermarket. They are pre-cooked. The only thing you need to do is reheating in oven.
- If you want a fast meal, skip making your own unagi sauce. You can find them in Japanese supermarket too.
Bonnie Eng says
You take the most gorgeous photos…these are some of my favorites…looks incredible!
That is so sweet of you! Thank you very much! Bryan took these pictures. I am sure he would be thrilled to hear someone likes his work. 🙂
I’ve never tried cooking eel at home but would love to try. This looks so tasty and mouthwatering!
Since the eel is pre-cooked, it is very easy and fast to reheat at home. Thanks a lot, Kelly.
The unagi don looks gorgeous! Even better than the ones sold in Japanese restaurant. The salmon row just adds more taste of the sea to the dish.
I never cook eel at home. But this one looks really easy and I’d like to try out!
Thank you so much, Maggie! Yes, the salmon roe added a nice saltiness and ocean flavor to the dish. That was my first time cooking eel too. Very easy. Enjoy!
I love Mitsuwa, too! haha – we used to go all the time but years ago, there was a renovation to the one we go to and it gets super packed all the time. But anyhow, I love going there to shop and browse/eat all the great food. Everyone I know loves eel rice bowl and I’d never think I could make it at home. Love Nami’s recipes and you did a fabulous rendition.
Asian supermarkets always get crazy packed! I like to go in the morning, which is usually still pretty calm. But yea, this eel bowl is easy and fast to make. Definitely better to make at home than buying from stores.
Nami | Just One Cookbook says
Absolutely gorgeous! Thank you so much for the kind mention. I love unagi, too, but eels from Japan have been so expensive for the past decades that it’s been a real treat when I eat it. I love your presentation with ikura on top!
Thank you Nami! Your recipe is simple and very easy to follow! We enjoyed this eel bowl a lot! 😀
Tina @ Just Putzing Around the Kitchen says
Yum, this looks fabulous! I love unagi 😀
Thank you Tina! It is a super easy to put together! Hope you will give it a try!