Anguilla grigliata con riso (Unagi Hitsumabushi)

Anguilla grigliata con riso (Unagi Hitsumabushi)

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Hitsumabushi is a specialty dish from Nagoya, consisting of steamed Japanese rice, barbecue grilled eel fillet, a beautifully thick, sticky, sweet/savoury sauce, and assorted condiments and garnishes. One of the most unique qualities this dish has to offer lies in how it is eaten. The dish must be divided into quarters, with the first quarter eaten as it is, the second with assorted seasonings, and the third served with plenty of dashi stock (almost like a soup). The fourth quarter can be enjoyed in whichever of the previous three manners you liked best. Find out how you like your grilled eel.


160g fresh steamed rice
1 grilled unagi eel filet
pinch of japanese sansho pepper powder
shredded nori seaweed
chopped spring onions
wasabi paste
dashi stock

unagi sauce:
2 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp sake
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp honey


  1. Make the unagi sauce by adding all the ingredients in a saucepan on medium heat. Stir until evenly combined and the sauce has thickened. Cut the unagi fillet into small strips.
  2. For the 1st serving, serve some rice into a bowl and drizzle the unagi sauce on top. Put the unagi strips on top of the rice and pour over some more of the sauce. Sprinkle the sansho pepper powder and nori and enjoy.
  3. For the 2nd serving, add some rice and unagi strips, then season with chopped spring onions, nori seaweed and wasabi paste.
  4. For the 3rd serving, add some rice, and then add the hot dashi stock to the bowl. Top with the all of the seasonings.
  5. For the 4th serving, feel free to eat it whichever way you liked the most.