Nasu Dengaku (roasted eggplant w/a sweet miso sauce)

Nasu Dengaku (roasted eggplant w/a sweet miso sauce)

This is one of my favorite ways to eat eggplant!  This particular recipe is from my Japanese cooking Teacher in Tokyo.  Some people deep fry the eggplant but I prefer roasting it in the oven, tastes much better I think.  This recipe makes more sauce than you need, but it keeps well in the fridge and can be used on all kinds of veggies, firm tofu or even meat!

for sauce
2 Tbs sugar
1 Tbs mirin
1/2 C Awase miso (mixed red & white miso) you can buy it already mixed or you can mix it yourself 1/4 C red miso and 1/4 C white miso
1 tsp hon-dashi powder or bonito powder

For the roasted eggplant you’ll need
4-5 small Japanese eggplants cut in half lengthwise
vegetable oil for brushing
Toasted sesame seeds

Making the sauce:

Whisk the sugar, mirin and miso together.  Cook over medium-low heat stirring until ingredients are mixed well and heated through about 4-5 minutes.  Do not boil it!  Take it off the heat and mix in hon dashi/bonito powder.

Roasting the eggplant:

Slice them in half lengthwise and score a criss-cross pattern into them to help retain the sauce. Brush with oil and roast in a 400* oven until the tops are a dark brown and the eggplant is cooked. Give the sliced sides a good coating of sauce, put under broiler to get a little caramelization (be careful, it will burn quickly).  Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

Serve immediately with some rice or as a first course  or appetizer.

Nasu Dengaku (roasted eggplant w/a sweet miso sauce)
 
Ingredients
  • for sauce
  • 2 Tbs sugar
  • 1 Tbs mirin
  • ½ C Awase miso (mixed red & white miso) you can buy it already mixed or you can mix it yourself ¼ C red miso and ¼ C white miso
  • 1 tsp hon-dashi powder or bonito powder
  • For the roasted eggplant you'll need
  • 4-5 small Japanese eggplants cut in half lengthwise
  • vegetable oil for brushing
  • Toasted sesame seeds
Instructions
  1. Making the sauce:
  2. Whisk the sugar, mirin and miso together.
  3. Cook over medium-low heat stirring until ingredients are mixed well and heated through about 4-5 minutes. Do not boil it!
  4. Take it off the heat and mix in hon dashi/bonito powder.
  5. Roasting the eggplant:
  6. Slice them in half lengthwise and score a criss-cross pattern into them to help retain the sauce.
  7. Brush with oil and roast in a 400* oven until the tops are a dark brown and the eggplant is cooked.
  8. Give the sliced sides a good coating of sauce, put under broiler to get a little caramelization (be careful, it will burn quickly).
  9. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
  10. Serve immediately with some rice or as a first course or appetizer.

 

Comments

  1. Oh, my! I have ‘Ichiban’ eggplants ready for picking. Thanks for sharing this.

  2. Lucky you!! There’s nothing better than fresh picked veggies. They’ll be perfect for this dish.

  3. This is a fabulous recipe! Incredibly delicious.

  4. Thank you very much! I’m glad you liked it. The miso tastes great on grilled fish or meat too.

  5. Hi Shirley – I made this recipe last night (posted on Instagram – thanks for your nice comment in reply!). It was very good but I have a question – when mixing the miso paste and the sugar and mirin are you supposed to add water? I had never cooked with miso before so I went to Uwajimaya and bought the organic fresh miso paste. But after I mixed the ingredients together and started to heat them it seemed to thick and not like a sauce – still like paste. So I had to add some water. Was that not correct? Any insight would be helpful.
    Also can I make (ok, beg for) a request on your blog – once that focuses on your favorite brands for the major ingredients. I get so overwhelmed at the choices when I go to Uwajimaya. For example yesterday I didn’t know which Mirin to buy and which miso paste to get. Any assistance would be so appreciated. Your recipes are wonderful and are only exceeded by your extraordinary taste, style and grace. Thanks again!

    • Thank you Brad for your comment. No you shouldn’t have to mix water into it the mirin should be enough. It could just be the type of miso you used. It should be a little thick so it’s spreadable on the eggplant, it’s not watery at all very thick. Any mirin is fine just don’t get Aji Mirin which is flavored. I use Marukome Miso medium Red and White miso from their Umami series (small rectangular containers, they have 4 types at Uwajimaya in this series) or just the medium red alone if I want the flavor a little stronger. Hope this helps. You can email me anytime through my blog if you ever have any questions. 🙂

  6. Shirley. There is a restaurant in miami, “shibui” that has a dish, that no words can describe. Its 1 of their most popular. Deep fried Eggplant with special miso sauce. My life would be complete if I could duplicate this in my home. I’m going to make yours, sounds similar, but it’s all about taste. I have to start somewhere. I don’t live Miami anymore. N. Georgia now. I’ve thought about for yrs, now I’m obsessed to figure this out.
    I prefer to roast, which will develop eggplant flavors differently than deep fry. I can adjust that sweetness in the sauce. I’m thinking, the special miso has ginger?
    I can vividly taste the sauce. Its definitely a savory/ sweet. Ginger? Any thoughts or suggestions?
    I like the sesame thing Action u have going on.

    • Thank you for your comment!! Hmmm ginger that sounds interesting. Usually Nasu Dengaku doesn’t have ginger it’s a very simple dish & my recipe is a very traditional way of making it except for the roasting instead of frying part. They probably added their own twist which many Asian restaurants in the U.S. Do. The miso sauce must be sweet, that balances out the saltiness of the miso. You could try to keep part of the sauce aside and try adding some grated ginger to it to see if that’s the flavor you’re looking for. I myself love roasted eggplant and I love this dish even more using roasted eggplant instead of deep frying. I hope you enjoy the recipe and please keep me posted 😊🍆❤️

      • maureen retting says:

        Hi Shirley. to update. im actually doing your recipe. I have 2 beautiful eggplants.
        Went to the Kroger “Huge” Marketplace store. Had O luck in shopping for the Miso.
        Hon-dashi powder or Bonito Powder.
        Is there a website, that would be a good dependable place to buy my pantry items for future culinary feats of Asian Fabulousness? Its looking like the EggPlant will have to be sacrificed to an Italian dish of Parmesan.
        Nothing like putting the Cart before the Horse….Im determined to get my kitchen in order for this recipe. I NOW have a new obsession, Finding a place to buy all the Items to have on hand for Cooking Asian Cuisine. HELP? List of items to always have on hand, and where to purchase? Thanks, for any help u can give me. maureen

        • That’s great! I’m so happy you’re going to try my recipe. Believe it or not Amazon.com sells the Ajinomoto Hon Dashi powder and many kinds of miso too. They sell the S & B curry roux I use also. If you don’t have an Asian Grocery store (like H Mart which also sells lots of Japanese pantry items) I’d suggest ordering online.

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