Ingredients, dishes and drinks from Japan by Ad Blankestijn

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


"Squid rice," simmered squid stuffed with rice. いかめし、イカ飯。

Mini-squid filled with rice and simmered in a soy-based stock. The squid is gutted and cleaned, head and tentacles are removed. The rice is usually glutinous rice, or a mix of glutinous and non-glutinous. The rice may be mixed with aburaage, sliced bamboo shoots, minced carrots etc. Thanks to long simmering, the squid becomes tender and is perfumed with the flavor of the stock.

A local dish from the Oshima area in Hokkaido, devised in 1941 by a bento vendor of Mori Station on the Hakodate Main Line. The company still exists and is now called Ikameshi Abe Shoten. When in the mid-1960s the Keio Department Store in Shinjuku started "ekiben competitions" - bringing the popular ones to Tokyo - "ikameshi" immediately entered the top of most popular ekiben and has since remained there.

[Photo Ad Blankestijn]