SquochiOctober 11th, 2012
This is for all of you who are watching leaves turn and pulling out your sweaters…
This is a favorite of mine and was a big hit with my mother. It combines the lovely sweetness of onions and winter squash with the gooey-ness of melted mochi. A great dish for fall and even colder months.
1 tablespoon olive or sesame oil
1 large or two small onions, sliced in thin half moon slices (from top to bottom of onion, not across)
pinch of salt
Half a winter squash, also cut into slices, but up to a ½-inch thick
1 tablespoon shoyu
½ tablespoon mirin
½ cup water
½ package of plain mochi, grated
In a heavy saucepan (enameled cast iron is best), heat the oil and begin to sauté the onions with a pinch of salt. After they have started to sweat, cover them, reduce the heat and let them cook down until caramelized. This may take 15 minutes or so. Check them regularly to make sure the heat isn’t too high, but if they are covered with a heavy lid, they should be fine—onions release a lot of liquid that will just get recycled in the pot.
Layer the squash on top of the onions. Mix the shoyu, mirin and water and pour carefully down the side of the pot. This liquid will steam the squash. Cover and let squash cook until it’s soft, about ten minutes.
Sprinkle the mochi evenly on top of the squash and cover once more. The mochi should melt in about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve hot.
Serves 4-6, depending on the size of the squash
VARIATIONS: It doesn’t hurt to add more onions; they cook down and they are totally delicious, so play with the ratio of onions to squash.
For a meltier mochi “cheese” on top, melt the mochi in some water in a saucepan on the side. Add a few sprinkles of shoyu and mirin. When it’s all melted, pour on top of the squash and let it set for a minute or two before serving.