Chinese cabbage (or komatsuna), parboiled in salt water
2-3 large leaves
Carrot, parboiled in salt water
Melting cheese / and Parmesan cheese
about 120 g or more / and a small amount
150 g or more
"A" Black pepper and nutmeg
a small amount each
"A" Sake (or red wine) and oyster sauce
1 tablespoon each
Soup stock cube
Soy milk (sweetened soy milk or milk is fine)
a scant 1 teaspoon
Onion, thinly sliced
Rehydrate the kurumabu in the refrigerator overnight (up to 2 days is fine). If you're in a hurry, boil them in water for about 10-15 minutes before baking.
To make the white sauce: Sauté the onion, add flour and butter, then add the soy milk. It will be slightly thick. Season well with a scant teaspoon of salt.
To make the meat sauce: Sauté the onion, push it to the side of the pan, then sauté the garlic. Add the ground pork, the "A" ingredients, the canned tomato and consommé, then simmer.
Thoroughly squeeze the excess water from the kurumabu. Cut them into eighths, arrange a layer in the bottom of the baking pan, then spread on a layer of the white sauce.
Cover the layer of white sauce with the parboiled Chinese cabbage, carrots, and Parmesan cheese. Add another layer of kurumabu, then pour on the meat sauce.
Sprinkle with your choice of cheese, then bake for 20-30 minutes in an oven preheated to 200℃. If preparing for baking the next day, let it sit in the refrigerator or "fresh food" compartment of your refrigerator.
Addendum: If preparing for baking the following day, be extra thorough in squeezing the excess water from the kurumabu, since the moisture tends to accumulate. Prepare the sauces on the thick side, and let them cool before adding to the baking pan.
Story Behind this Recipe
I love my mother's stewed kurumabu. This lasagna makes use of the kurumabu's sauce absorbing properties. I'm eager to teach people about this excellent traditional Japanese dried food! This lasagne can be prepared for baking a day in advance, or baked the same day! It's a perfect dish for parties.
I recommend boiling the kurumabu over soaking it to give a moister texture. Be sure to thoroughly squeeze out the excess water before adding to the baking pan. Both the white sauce and meat sauce should be nice and thick, and well seasoned with salt. Tasty sauce is the key to the success of this dish! The vegetables should retain their bite, so parboil for only about a minute.