I can not believe that I have not shared such a staple Japanese dish, Oyako Donburi, generally known as Oyako don for short before with my readers. It is the best timing though, I have been creative during my work holidays and made lots of Japanese pottery for my recipes. And this bowl I made is perfect to serve Oyako Don in!
What is Oyako Don? “Oya” means ‘parents’, which implies a Chicken, and “ko” means ‘child’, which implies an egg, so Oyako Don is chicken and egg rice bowl. Donburi or Don is a Japanese name for large rice bowls that are bigger than ordinary rice bowls to serve any rice bowl dishes such as Gyu-don, Katsu-don and Miso Katsu-don. “Don” is shorter version of Donburi.
Another reason perhaps I did not share the Oyako Don recipe is that I had been searching on how to source “Mitsuba”. I wanted to make the dish as authentic as possible. Mitsuba is also called “Japanese Parsley” and has beautiful trefoil leaves. It is often used to garnish Japanese dishes like Chawan mushi and Ozoni. Luckily, my Japanese friend who lives nearby gave me a pot of Mitsuba that she grew and it miraculously survived in my backyard (most plants die there). I only had three leaves though…. and I just used them all for Oyako Don, so I will not be able to update Ozoni and Chawan mushi until the Mitsuba regrows.
Oyako Donburi is super easy to make and it can be cooked in 20 minutes if you have plain steamed rice already cooked and ready. My daughter does not like chicken thigh but in my opinion, chicken thigh has more flavour than chicken breast so that’s what I use. However, it is up to you which part of the chicken to use. As long as chicken and egg is used, it will be “Oyako” don.
Once all the ingredients are chopped up and the Dashi and other Japanese condiments are mixed, making Oyako Don is quite fast. Another thing I should mention is that because Donburi dishes are often cooked in Japan, there is a special Donburi dish making pan. It is called Donburi Nabe. Donburi nabe is quite shallow and about 16cm in diameter. It is designed to only cook for one bowl so that all the ingredients cooked in the pan perfectly slide on top of the rice. To make that process easy, the handle of the pan is attached verticallly.
It is pretty easy to make but the most important part of Oyako Don is to not over cook the eggs. Once the egg is poured, place a lid on and just turn the heat off. The egg will be cooked with the remaining heat. And of course Oyako Don is good for lunch too. If you have a container that can be microwaved, why not pack Oyako Donburi Obento for lunch to take the next day. That’s what I do.
What do you think about my Japanese pottery rice bowl?
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- 3 cups cooked rice *1
- 250 g Chicken thigh fillets
- 1/2 brown onion
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup Dashi stock soup
- 2 tbsp mirin
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp usukuchi soy sauce
- Combine all seasonings and set aside. It will make about 1 cup of seasoning.
- Cut the onion lengthwise and then cut it into wedges.
- Cut the chicken thigh into small pieces so the chicken will be cooked thoroughly in a short time.
- Place a small frying pan over medium heat and pour 1/2 cup of seasoning.
- Bring the seasoning to simmer, then add half of the cut onion, and 1/2 of the chicken thigh into the seasoning to cook. (If you are cooking 2 serves in 1 frying pan then add all the onion and chicken)
- While the onion and chicken is being cooked, crack the three eggs open into a small mixing bowl and stir the eggs.
- After the onion and chicken has cooked for about 5 minutes over medium heat and the seasoning liquid has reduced to about half, pour half of the eggs over the chicken and onion and evenly sprinkle chopped green shallots (optional).
- Place a lid on and turn the heat off to allow the remaining heat to cook the egg.
- Serve 1 1/2 cup of rice in a Donburi rice bowl and slide the egg and chicken cooked in the frying pan over the rice to serve.