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The Crack Magazine

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Genmai Part 2

Genmai on its own is rather bland and is normally served with soy sauce (or tamari for people on a gluten-free diet), pickles and gomasio.


These are simple - slice cucumbers, mushrooms or boiled beetroots very thinly and soak overnight in a mixture of half vinegar and half water, then drain and serve (you might want to check that they aren't too sour, and if they are rinse off the excess vinegar with pure water).


Gomasio is sesame seeds roasted with salt, then blended in a food processor (presumably it was pounded with a pestle and mortar in the days before food processors).


Sesame seeds, 70g

Salt, 10g

This is easiest with a heavy skillet or frying pan - it spreads the heat around more evenly and heats up more slowly, allowing you to judge the temperature correctly - the temperature is correct when the sesame seeds begin to smoke very slightly. So put the pan on a high heat and wait thirty seconds to a minute (depending on your pan, stove etc.) then add the sesame seeds and salt and immediately begin moving it around the pan. It should start giving off a little smoke straight away if you've judged it right, if not just keep moving it around until it does. And keep going until the mixture turns from cream-coloured to brown (about a minute or so). Now tip into an oven-proof dish and wait for it to cool down, and once cool blend in a food processor until there are no or very few intact seeds and all the salt has been absorbed into the seeds. In spite of this, the gomasio should be still be basically granular rather than a paste (so you can spoon it from a dish into your genmai) - if you've been over-zealous with the blender or you've used a very oily batch of sesame seeds it may form clumps - in which case sieve to separate the oily clumps from the grains.

vegan, gluten-free (if you use tamari), low GI