Cut the kabocha squash up with the skin on into about 5 cm pieces. Finely chop the ginger.
Put the sugar in a cold pan and turn the heat on to medium. When the sugar is melted and starts to bubble, add the ground pork and ginger.
Don't touch it to start with. When the meat at the bottom starts to change color, mix it all up and cook until the fat coming out of the pork is transparent.
Add the soy sauce, sake, and dashi stock granules to flavor the ground pork well.
Put the kabocha squash in the pan in a single layer. Add enough water to cover the kabocha squash, and cook over low-medium heat for about 15 to 20 minutes.
When a bamboo skewer goes through a piece of squash easily, taste and add more soy sauce if needed.
Turn the heat down to low. Push the kabocha squash to one side of the pan and slowly add some katakuriko dissolved in an equal amount of water as the cooking liquid, and stir. Once thickened, simmer for 1 to 2 minutes.
Transfer the kabocha squash to serving plates, pour the ground meat sauce over, and it's done.
Story Behind this Recipe
This is one of my favorite recipes that my mother taught me.
By using no oil and cooking the ground meat with slightly caramelized sugar, it become richer and more delicious. The kabocha squash falls apart easily, so try not to stir it too much!