My cookbook, KANSHA: Celebrating Japan's Vegan & Vegetarian Traditions (Ten Speed Press, 2010) provides a solid foundation to the principles and practice of kansha in the kitchen and at table. This workshop page enables me to guide you further.  ENJOY! 


Great Grated Salad Dressings & Dipping Sauces


Green salads tossed lightly with Asian-flavored dressings -- sesame oil. soy-sauce, rice vinegar -- began appearing on menus outside Japan about thirty years ago. In a bit of reverse culinary exchange these salad dressings, known as wa fu doreshingu, have become enormously popular in Japan. Look on any Japanese supermarket shelf and you’ll find dozens of bottles of such salad dressings. Unfortunately, nearly all commercially made ones include unwanted chemical flavor-enhancers and product stabilizers. I urge you to make your own: DOWNLOAD my easy-to-make grated carrot and ginger dressing.

Below I suggest a variation on the theme that uses a grated daikon radish mixture spiked with chili peppers. Poetically named momiji oroshi or "fiery maples" it provides a spicy touch to blander foods.

Either the carrot-ginger or chili-spiked radish mixtures can do double duty: as salad dressings (toss with assorted washed and spun-dry lettuces) and as dip sauces (for grilled vegetables, pan-seared slabs of tōfu, or as pictured below, fresh spring rolls).

momiji oroshi

Chili-Spiked Fiery Red Maple Sauce


Have ready a 3 to 4 ounce cylindrical chunk of scrubbed (but not peeled) daikon radish,

Take several dried chili peppers (called tōgarashi or taka no tsumé) and split each in half lengthwise; removing the seeds.

Using the chili pepper shards, poke several holes in the daikon. Insert the shards of split chili pepper in those holes. Press firmly to be sure they are buried in the radish.

Grate the daikon using circular motions on a ceramic grater.

Nama Harumaki (fresh spring rolls, left) or green salads (above) are great served with oroshi (grated) dressings, sauces, & dips.

       1/3 cup rice vinegar
       1tablespoon sugar
       1 and 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
Combine the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved. Remove the pan from the stove and let cool. Add the soy sauce and transfer to a glass jar.

OPTIONAL ingredients:
       2 to 3 tablespoons grated radish (or carrot)
       1 teaspoon grated yuzu (citron) peel
       1 teaspoon sesame oil
Add these to the bottle and shake well.

© Copyright 2013. All rights reserved by Elizabeth Andoh
After grating daikon (or carrot) save any accumulated “juice” to add to the Basic Vinegar Dressing.

Using YUZU

With a microplane or other fine grater, grate yuzu peel. Add it to the chili-spiked sauce for a fruity variation on the basic oroshi dressing.

I welcome your feedback -- especially captioned photos with a brief description of your kitchen sessions when you try making the recipes above. Those interested in offering feedback, please download a set of guidelines for submitting and displaying your work.To further teaching goals, I may post some of the feedback to this site, adding my commentary.