Tag Archives: 茗荷

Vegetables Facts & Tips 21: Myoga/Myoga Ginger

Following a comment by Debra at Hapabento, I thought it might be a good time to (re-) introduce this evry colourful and tasty vegetable, namely Myoga or Myoga Ginger.

Although it is called Myoga Ginger, it is another variety of ginger cultivated for its bud and flower instead of its root.

Wikipedia definition:
Myōga (茗荷) or myoga ginger (Zingiber mioga, Zingiberaceae) is an herbaceous, deciduous, perennial native to Japan that is grown for its edible flower buds and flavorful shoots. Flower buds are finely shredded and used in Japanese cuisine as a garnish for miso soup, sunomono and dishes such as roasted eggplant.

A traditional crop in Japan, myoga has been introduced to cultivation in Australia and New Zealand for export to the Japanese market.

As a woodland plant myoga has specific shade requirements for its growth. It is frost-tolerant to 0F, -18C possibly colder.

Myoga flowers are edible!

FACTS:

-Myoga can be cultivated between June and October, and again bewteen March and May.

-Very high contents in Potassium and Calcium, Also contains Magnesium, Iron and manganese.

-Vitamin B1, B2 and B6. Vegetal fibers.

-It is considered as a natural herb medicine which helps preserve one’s stamina in summer, especially, as far back as the 3rd Century. It does help digestion.

-Preservation is done best by wrapping in kitchen paper inside the fridge. Can be safely kept for 10 days.

TIPS:

-Choose firm and “tight” specimens. When cutting them through the the leaves should stick tightly to eah other.

-Choose specimens with a nice and bright colour, well-rounded and compact in shape.

VARIETY:

Myoga Take/”Myoga Bamboo”

Myoga Take are the young stems of myoga which are also edible.

RECIPES:

Myoga pickled in miso paste

Myoga can be pickled in many manners with miso, sweet vinegar, etc. on ots own or together with other vegetables.

It can be made into great vegan or omnivore sushi rolls!

How about those sushi nigiri?

Great, thinly chopped on tofu!

Actually, the possibilities are endless!

HEALTH FACTS:

-Combined with yam, or with shiso/perilla leaves, or with cabbage, or with leek, helps restore appetite, helps combat ageing and prevent cancer.

-Combined with wakame seaweed, or with mackerel, or with sardines, or with tofu, helps prevent high blood pressure and heart diseases, and has a general beneficial health influence.

-Combined with eels, or with oyters, or with garlic, or with onions, helps restore health, prevent cancer and provide for stamina.

-Combined with cucumber, or with celery, or with oysters, or with gourd, helps with body elimination and prevent kidney diseases.

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Hapabento, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Tokyo Terrace, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Bento Boutique, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento

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Vegan New Year Sashimi at Yasaitei

January 5th, 2010. Tuesday, isn’t it? Back to the office. Usual break before late evening work. Hungry, but can’t eat too much as dinner will be waiting for me at 9:30 back home.
Only one option: the quick snack at Yasaitei. Becoming too much of a habit….

What would you expect me to order, then?
Vegatables sashimi!
Boring, you might say…
Totally agree, but boredom is so tatsy sometimes!

In the front, “the usual stuff” you might say:
Celery (grown in Shizuoka Prefecture), red radihes and myoga ginger sprouts.
Now, what is that leafy thing on the left in the background?

Common Ice Plant or Crystalline Iceplant? In Japanese? Ice Plant?
The French actually use it in their cuisine under the name of ficoïde glaciale.

Wikipedia will only say that Mesembryanthemum crystallinum is a prostrate succulent plant that is native to Africa, Western Asia and Europe. The plant is covered with large, glistening bladder cells, reflected in its common names of Common Ice Plant, Crystalline Iceplant or Iceplant.
Its leaves are edible, as with other some members of the Aizoaceae family. It is also cultivated for ornamentation (hum!).

And I can tell you they are worth discovering, be vegan, vegetarian or omnivore!

Now, for the second half of the plate: Juicy daikon and crunchy succulent cucumber backed with shiso/perill leaf and sliced winter onions (sweet!)

The dressing was the “usual” sesame oil with rock salt and dark miso.

But I needed a little more (with the second glass of Doman shochu!):
Mukago/零余子!
Now, unfortunately, it might be difficult to find that little thing outside Japan, but note it down on your notebook!

Mukago

A bit difficult to explain. An aerial tuber?
The fact is that it is some kind of fruit/nut/seed (I don’t have a clue here!) produced by yama imo or glutinous yam in Japanese, as one form of natural reproduction.
These mukago are succulent either boiled, or as in this case deep-fried.
Can’t stop eating them once started!

YASAITEI
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tokiwa-Cho, 1-6-2 Green Heights Wamon 1-C
Tel.: 054-2543277
Business hours: 17:30~22:00
Closed on Sundays
Reservations highly recommended
Seating: 6 at counter + 20 at tables
Set Courses: 3,000, 4,000, 5,000 yen
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES
Not-Just-Recipes, Bengal cuisine, Cooking Vegetarian, Frank Fariello, Gluten-free Vegan Family, Meatless MamaFrank Fariello, , Warren Bobrow, Wheeling Gourmet, Le Petit Cuisinier, Vegan Epicurean, Miss V’s Vegan Cookbook, Comestiblog, To Cheese or not To Cheese, The Lacquer Spoon, Russell 3

Please check the new postings at:
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Vegan Sushi Recipe Suggestions 1: Myoga/Myoga Ginger

I already have introduced Vegan and Vegetarian Sushi, but following further requests and questions by my vegan (I’m not!) friends, I decided to contribute a small series of postings to give them more detailed suggestions and ideas!

Now, please check sushi rice recipe HERE to make things more practical!

The first vegetable amenable to sushi I would like to introduce is Myoga, or Myoga Ginger.

Please check Myoga HERE on Wikipedia!

Myoga is a very interesting vegetable as not only the shoots but also the flowers are edible!

The flower in its natural state!

As bought at the market.

Interestingly enough, as Japan makes an enormous consumption of them it has to import a lot from New Zealand and Australia. I’m sure you can buy it at local Asian markets. It could porve an interesting cultivation for some, too!

Myoga sushi roll.

Now there are two basic ways of presenting myoga as sushi.
First, as shown on above picture, as a roll.
It doesn’t have to be complicated. Just chop the myoga in strips and fill the roll with it accompanied by some wasabi.

Myoga Sushi nigiri.

The other basic way is present it as sushi nigiri on top of a small ball of sushi rice previously smeared with a little wasabi.

You can prepare the myoga in two basic ways,too:
The first one would would be just to wash it and use it raw.
The second would be to pickle it in rice vinegar and sugar for a while, press it and serve it in both sushi styles as explained above.

There are other interesting possibilities when you let your imagination go free as in above picture where the rice is replaced with a small cube of tofu and the topping is made with chopped myoga, tofu and wasabi all mixed together!

To further convince you, look at the picture above:
All vegan sushi:
from top down: Cucumber, egg plant/aubergine and myoga. The last are pickled daikon!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES
Not-Just-Recipes, Bengal cuisine, Cooking Vegetarian, Frank Fariello, Gluten-free Vegan Family, Meatless MamaFrank Fariello, , Warren Bobrow, Wheeling Gourmet, Le Petit Cuisinier, Vegan Epicurean, Miss V’s Vegan Cookbook, Comestiblog, To Cheese or not To Cheese, The Lacquer Spoon, Russell 3

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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Vegetarian & Vegan Cuisine: Myoga as a Vegetable


The Japan Blog List

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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日本語のブログ
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Myōga (茗荷) or myoga ginger (Zingiber mioga, Zingiberaceae) is an herbaceous, deciduous, perennial native to Japan that is grown for its edible flower buds and flavorful shoots.

As a woodland plant myoga has specific shade requirements for its growth. It is frost-tolerant to 0F, -18C possibly colder.
Some constituents of myoga have shown promise for potentially anti-carcinogenic properties

A traditional crop in Japan, myoga has been introduced to cultivation in Australia and New Zealand for export to the Japanese market. I’ve always wondered if it were available on American and European Markets.
It is a great plant for use in vegetarian and vegan dishes as it adds lots of soft flavors.
Flower buds are usually found finely shredded raw in Japanese cuisine as a garnish.
But there are many other possibilities:


Tenpura.
Actually some Japanese restaurants will prepare the flowers as well as tenpura.
Vegans should replace the egg white included in the batter with a little cornstarch.


Myoga in Miso Soup.
Cut the myoga into thin strips and just add them to the miso soup inside bowls before serving it.


Myoga Gohan/Myoga Rice.
Cut the myoga in very thin strips and put it on top of the rice before steaming it. When the rice is cokked, mix in the myoga with rice and serve.
Vegetarians and Vegans may use genmai/whole rice for higher nutritients.
Beautiful when freshly cooked!


Myoga Pickles
Wash myoga quickly under running water. Drain and take excess water with kitchen paper.
Best pickled with amazu/sweet rice vinegar. If not available use rice vinegar, sugar and soft umeboshi/Japanese pickled plums.

Enjoy!