Nasu dengaku

Nasu Dengaku (grilled eggplant with sweet miso sauce)
Here’s part 2 of last night’s light Japanese dinner. But first I have to tell you about this left over stew I made tonight.

After eating Tacos Al Pastor for 2 nights, I was getting bored with them, but I still had almost half of the roast left. I felt like something a little saucier tonight, so I fried up some garlic and onions, cut the roast into big hunks and added it to the onions with some remaining marinade, cumin, half a can of diced tomatoes and some water. Twenty minutes later I had a delightful “Mexican” stew with big chunks of moist tender meat and an unctuous sauce redolent of chiles and garlic with a mild sweetness coming from the pineapple in the marinade. I served it with some sliced sweet onion, cilantro, limes for squeezing and warm tortillas.

I didn’t take any photos because I was thinking “how good could leftover stew be”, but honestly I enjoyed the stew more than I did the tacos. I don’t think I’d ever make a roast just to make a stew, but the next time I make the taco’s I’ll be sure to make extra to make this stew. Not only did the roast meat add an incredible flavour to the stew, it was also much more moist and tender than a typical braised dish.

Grilled eggplant before the miso goes on

Okay back to the eggplant from last night. This is a fairly typical Japanese dish you’d get at an Izakaya (Japanese tapas bar). The eggplant is grilled to bring out its smokey flavour and the miso sauce enrobes the eggplant adding a well balanced sweet earthy flavour of its own. Putting it back under a broiler for a minute caramelizes the miso sauce adding even more depth. It’s great as an appetizer with some beer or as a main with some hot white rice.

This recipe makes way more sauce than you need, but it keeps well in the fridge and can be used on all kinds of veggies or even firm tofu. If you want to put it on meat, make sure you start the meat on the grill first as the sugar in the miso will burn if you put it on too soon.

for sauce
1 C dashi
2 Tbs sugar
2 Tbs mirin
1/2 C miso (I used 1/4 C red miso and 1/4 C white miso)
2 tsp corn starch
1/4 tsp yuzu kosho (yuzu pepper) optional

for grilled eggplant
4 small Japanese eggplants cut in half lengthwise (or 2 Chinese or Italian eggplants)
vegetable oil for brushing
sesame seeds

For the sauce, whisk the dashi, sugar, mirin, miso and corn starch together. Heat over medium heat stirring until the sauce thickens. Take it off the heat and add the yuzu whisking it in to the sauce.

For the eggplant, slice them in half lengthwise and score a criss-cross pattern into them to help retain the sauce. Brush with oil and grill on a BBQ or under a broiler until the tops are a dark brown and the eggplant is cooked. Give the sliced sides a good coating of sauce, sprinkle with sesame seeds then put under a broiler to get a little caramelization (be careful, this sauce will burn quickly).

Serve immediately with some rice.

  • http://www.souvlakiforthesoul.com/ Peter G

    Mmmm…Japanese eggplants are just beautiful. I love that sauce too. well done on making a leftover stew.

  • http://www.souvlakiforthesoul.com Peter G

    Mmmm…Japanese eggplants are just beautiful. I love that sauce too. well done on making a leftover stew.

  • http://www.hungryandfrozen.blogspot.com/ Laura @ Hungry and Frozen

    “the miso sauce enrobes the eggplant”

    *drools*

  • http://www.hungryandfrozen.blogspot.com Laura @ Hungry and Frozen

    “the miso sauce enrobes the eggplant”

    *drools*

  • http://mikes-table.themulligans.org/ mike

    That sauce sounds really interesting and the egg plant looks mouthwatering in the photos.

  • http://mikes-table.themulligans.org/ mike

    That sauce sounds really interesting and the egg plant looks mouthwatering in the photos.

  • http://www.cookbookqueen.blogspot.com/ Kelly-Jane

    Sounds like a good recipe and your first picture is especailly great :)

  • http://www.cookbookqueen.blogspot.com Kelly-Jane

    Sounds like a good recipe and your first picture is especailly great :)

  • http://www.noblepig.com/ noble pig

    Looks wonderful with an intersting flavor. I love miso.

  • http://www.noblepig.com/ noble pig

    Looks wonderful with an intersting flavor. I love miso.

  • http://newlywedcooking.blogspot.com/ sharon

    That criss cross pattern looks awesome!

  • http://newlywedcooking.blogspot.com sharon

    That criss cross pattern looks awesome!

  • http://closetcooking.blogspot.com/ Kevin

    Nice looking nasu dengaku! I made it one a while ago and really enjoyed it.

  • http://closetcooking.blogspot.com/ Kevin

    Nice looking nasu dengaku! I made it one a while ago and really enjoyed it.

  • http://www.weareneverfull.com/ We Are Never Full

    one of my favorite things to eat at my local japanese restaurant. bookmarking this one!

  • http://www.weareneverfull.com We Are Never Full

    one of my favorite things to eat at my local japanese restaurant. bookmarking this one!

  • http://TheRecipeGirl.blogspot.com/ RecipeGirl

    I’ve never had this in a Japanese restaurant but it looks like something great to try at home on the grill :)

  • http://TheRecipeGirl.blogspot.com RecipeGirl

    I’ve never had this in a Japanese restaurant but it looks like something great to try at home on the grill :)

  • http://happylovestrawberry.blogspot.com/ Indigo

    Sounds fantastic; my Japanese-food-obsession continues ^__^. Gorgeous photos!

  • http://happylovestrawberry.blogspot.com/ Indigo

    Sounds fantastic; my Japanese-food-obsession continues ^__^. Gorgeous photos!

  • http://kumikoskitchen.co.uk/ Kumiko

    nice shot of the nasu.

  • http://kumikoskitchen.co.uk Kumiko

    nice shot of the nasu.

  • http://allthingsnice.typepad.com/ Syrie

    Marc, I love eggplant. It’s such a versatile vegetable. I especially love Nasu dengaku. Great pics as usual!

  • http://allthingsnice.typepad.com Syrie

    Marc, I love eggplant. It’s such a versatile vegetable. I especially love Nasu dengaku. Great pics as usual!

  • http://www.cookeatfret.com/ Claudia (cook eat FRET)

    i’ve always loved this dish
    one of my faves
    sweet and smokey and misoey
    i gotta get some of those dashi teabags…

  • http://www.cookeatfret.com Claudia (cook eat FRET)

    i’ve always loved this dish
    one of my faves
    sweet and smokey and misoey
    i gotta get some of those dashi teabags…

  • David

    Someone has copied your exact recipe word-for-word to http://www.opensourcefood.com/people/norecipes/recipes/nasu-dengaku-grilled-eggplant-with-sweet-miso
    Just thought I’d let you know.

  • David

    Someone has copied your exact recipe word-for-word to http://www.opensourcefood.com/people/norecipes/recipes/nasu-dengaku-grilled-eggplant-with-sweet-miso
    Just thought I’d let you know.

  • Maly DeLish

    thanks for the inspiration. i attempted this recipe for a sushi madness party last night, with my own twist of rolled skewers topped w/fragrant tarragon and sesame bonito sprinklings! the sauce rocks – especially with the kick of yushu koshu. some folks commented they didn't usually like eggplant but loved this! there's also extra sauce so i can't wait to try this to perfection.

  • slimshadyisdead

    Make your portion yield more apparent. I don’t see it anywhere.

    • http://norecipes.com Marc Matsumoto

      Sorry, this is an old recipe and I didn’t used to list portion yields. I’ve started including this information but with almost 500 recipes it’s gonna take a while to go back and fill in all the blanks. This makes 4 Japanese eggplants, so if you’re serving it as an appetizer it should feed 4 people. If you’re using it as a main with some sides (like rice) figure 2. Thanks for bearing with us:-)

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  • Jessica Webb

    this dish was delicious!  I ate nasu dengaku for the 1st time a few months ago when I was in Tohoku doing tsunami clean up and some of the locals volunteered to make our meals and I fell in love with it. I tried to make it my self by just slathering miso paste on fried eggplant and it wasn’t very good.  Your recipe is just like what they served us, way better than my attempt!  Thank you so much for sharing!

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  • http://www.facebook.com/saamah Saamah Abdallah

    Yummy! I recommend boiling the aubergine a little before grilling to make it extra creamy

  • scott c

    I’m kind of late for this post, but a small mom & pop restaurant I frequent puts roasted pumping seeds on top of their dengaku nasu. It’s a nice contrast since the dish can be quite creamy.

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I'm Marc, and I want to teach you some basic techniques and give you the confidence and inspiration so that you can cook without recipes too!