Learn how to prepare and cook eel for the most delicious unagi donburi (grilled eel rice bowl) complete with homemade sauce from scratch! (Serves 2 and doesn't include cooking rice. See here for how to cook Japanese rice.)
- 3 tbsp turbinado sugar (light brown with coarse texture)
- 1 tsp dark brown sugar
- 5 tbsp sake
- 5 tbsp mirin
- 5 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 filleted eels (approx 300g)
- 2 tbsp sake
- 300g cooked rice
- 2 pinches sansho pepper (optional)
- Add 3 tbsp of turbinado sugar and 1 tsp dark brown sugar to a sauce pan. Place the pan on the stove and turn on the heat to medium-high.
- Once the sugar starts to melt, add 5 tbsp sake and 5 tbsp mirin. Bring to boil and allow to cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add 5 tbsp of soy sauce and turn down the heat to simmer.
- Simmer until thickened slightly (about 10 minutes). Stir occasionally to prevent the sugar from burning.
- Remove from the heat and allow to cool while preparing the eel.
- Wash the filleted eel with cold running water.
- Cover a chopping board with a sheet of plastic wrap and place the eel on top. Cut each eel into 2-3 pieces by pressing a sharp knife into the area you want to cut, and pushing the eel back and forth over the plastic wrap.
- Place the eel in a frying pan with the skin side down and add 2 tbsp of sake.
- Turn on the heat to medium and steam for 5 minutes with the lid on.
- Remove it from the heat and line the grill with aluminium foil. Preheat the grill on medium-high for 5 minutes.
- Place the eel on the foil with the skin side down and grill for 6 minutes.
- Turn the eel over and grill the skin side for 5 minutes.
- Apply the sauce generously but evenly over the skin and grill for 30 seconds.
- Turn the eel over and apply the sauce on the meat side and grill for 30 seconds.
- Repeat steps 8 and 9 twice more (3 times on each side in total).
- Dish up the rice and brush the surface with the leftover sauce.
- Place the eel on top and sprinkle with sansho pepper.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Category: Seafood
- Method: Grill
- Cuisine: Japanese
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