What is Umeboshi?
Umeboshi (梅干 or 梅干し), literally means "dried ume" or "dried plum" is pickled ume (plum) fruits that is a traditional Japan food.
Japanese people began making umeboshi during the Heian period (794-1185).
Ume (Prunus mume) is a species of fruit-bearing tree in the genus Prunus, which is often called a plum but is actually more closely related to the apricot.
Umeboshi is a popular kind of tsukemono (pickles) in Japan, and which tastes sour and salty. There is also sweet umeboshi, which is pickled with honey.
Known for its distinctive sourness, umeboshi usually served as side dishes for rice or as a filling for rice balls in bentos for breakfast and lunch.
In this article, we would like to tell you how to easily make umeboshi.
Let's try make umeboshi!
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How to Eat Umeboshi
Umeboshi indeed has very sour and salty flavor. But it also indeed has a lot of health benefits.
Although it's sour and salty, but Japanese people really love that flavor of umeboshi. This is perhaps because long time ago, like in Edo and Nara period, most of foods in Japan have very light flavor.
Then, there's this umeboshi who has thick flavor and therefore umeboshi become a food with tasty and unique flavor for Japanese people.
Japanese people usually eat umeboshi as side dishes for rice, or as a filling for rice balls (onigiri), or in their rice in bentos for breakfast and lunch.
If you live in a country with strong-flavored foods with spices everywhere, you might frown upon the taste of umeboshi. But, there are several ways to eat umeboshi to make it more delicious!
Eat umeboshi with sasami (chicken breast meat)
If you combine the flavor of umeboshi and chicken meat, it will not taste very sour and salty anymore. Instead, this combination will has savory flavor with some hints of sourness.
To eat umeboshi with chicken meat, Japanese people usually use sasami (chicken breast meat).
There are several ways to eat umeboshi with sasami.
First, you can cut the umeboshi to small pieces or crush it so it became paste and just put it on the top of half-raw or cooked chicken breast.
Second, you can chop the umeboshi until it become like paste (you can also add sake and mirin to mix in the umeboshi paste), and make it as a fill inside the chicken breast, then grill or fry it.
Third, you can make sasami-umeboshi roll by flattening the chicken breast, and using chopped umeboshi mixed with perilla leaves as the filler, and roll it just like sushi.
Eat umeboshi with cucumber
Japanese people loves to eat umeboshi with cucumber.
You can chop or crush the cucumber, then sprinkle and mix some salt and/or vinegar on it, then mix the salted cucumber with chopped umeboshi. You can also add ginger.
The other way is, to cook the sliced or chopped umeboshi with cucumber, pork meat, sausage, and perilla leaves on fry pan.
Eat umeboshi with cold tofu or spaghetti
Hiyayakko (冷奴) or cold tofu is one of the good partner for umeboshi. Put the umeboshi on cold tofu and just eat them together. You can also add katsuobushi (dried tuna/bonito).
There is also "Japanese style spaghetti", which is a spaghetti with some Japanese foods mixed with it. In this Japanese style spaghetti, Japanese people usually put minced umeboshi in it.
These are some ways of eating umeboshi that make it more delicious. For you who cannot stand the strong flavor of umeboshi, maybe these can be your choices of eating it!