for cooking 3 rice cooker cups' worth of rice (1 sachet of dashi powder = 6 g)
☆Usukuchi soy sauce
First prepare the bamboo shoot to remove the bitterness. Cut the top of the bamboo shoot diagonally without peeling the skins because the skins will give it flavour. Make slits lengthways to a 1/3 of the thickness. Place the bamboo shoot in a deep pot.
Pour plenty of water in the deep pot and add rice bran (or a handful of rice) and one red chilli. Once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low. Cook the bamboo shoot until a skewer goes through easily.
Let sit until completely cooled. Prepare the bamboo shoot the day before making the rice dish, if possible. If you use bamboo shoot in brine go straight to the bracketed instructions in Step 4.
Peel the bamboo shoot and cut to separate the sheath, top flesh, and bottom. This photo shows the pieces you can get from one bamboo shoot. [Slice the bottom into quarter-rounds. Thinly slice the top lengthwise.]
Blanch the aburaage in boiled water and drain. Cut into 5 mm squares so it mixes easily with the bamboo shoot and rice.
Put the rinsed rice and ☆ ingredients into the rice cooker. Fill with dashi stock up to 3 cup mark and add the aburaage and bamboo shoot. Press start to cook the rice.
After cooking the rice, let it sit for about 10 minutes.
Story Behind this Recipe
To enjoy the full flavour of seasonal bamboo shoots, remove the bitterness and cook them simply with rice.
Store any leftover bamboo shoots in a storage container, covered in water and kept in the fridge. Use up within 3 days. Change the water in the storage container every day. Instead of kombucha, you could use kombu dashi powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt Or, for a more authentic broth, prepare the dashi stock with kombu and bonito flakes and let it cool before using.