Edamame Dumpling ずんだ [Rcipes, Summer 夏レシピ]

日本語のレシピは ビーガン、ベジタリアン情報満載の Hachidory から ご覧下さい 

Have you heard the word, “Edamame”

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 Flower of edamame

It is the young green soybeans.

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It seems it is getting popular in other countries too, though they are usually sold in the frozen form.

“Edamame” is my most favorite summer vegetable.

It is not only because its taste and texture fit my taste bud, but it always brings me the fond memory of my childhood.

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Edamame grown in my garden a few years ago.

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The following year, many edamame leaves grew vigrously, but the beans did not grow much.  I still do not know why .


Whenever I cook and eat edamame, the one scene flashes back to my mind.
It is the dining room, where there is edamame heaped up in a big bowl on the table, and my father picks up a pod, brings to his mouth in a very quick motion, instantly goes to the next pod and repeats the same action until the bowl turns out to be empty.

Beside him, I also try to be quick to eat them as I did not want him to finish all before I also eat them to my heart content ! 

I’m sure it would look funny to you if you could see this scene.
My mother was still busy cooking other dishes when we started eating edamame.   She used to prepare so many dishes for each meal.   The table was full of Japanese small plates and bowls as she served everything individually except edamame.

Edamame of that time was super delicious, maybe that’s why we used to love it so much and could eat so much.

I cannot encounter the same quality of edamame anymore, but still can meet with the closer satisfactory ones once a while, so I am still tempted to buy them whenever I see edamame thinking they could be close to the taste of old day’s ones.

Today’s recipe is “Zunda”, a traditional edamame dish from Yamagata prefecture, which produces the best quality of edamame in Japan, and where my mother was from.

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If you search on the net, all the pictures or recipes of “Zunda” must be introduced as a dessert.  It is a bit sweet but, my mother used to prepare it as one of the dishes of the meal. 
Wherever she made this I helped her, taking the beans out of the pods and removing the membrane.  Mashing, pounding and seasoning were my mother’s part, but once a while she let me pound the edamame.   I was very excited when she asked me to do so.  The permission to do something that is usually not allowed always makes the kids so proud of.

I would be so thrilled if I could see those scenes related edamame and my parents with my eyes like it is possible for my children to do so now with the modern technology.  

Traditionally making “Zunda “ requires time as it involves time consuming jobs, like detaching the beans from stalks, washing, boiling, taking out from the each pods, removing the membrane from each beans, mashing and pounding with the mortar and the pestle made of clay, shaping into small balls and making gravy to pour.

However, you can reduce the cooking time tremendously if you use ready made frozen edamame and an electric grinder instead of the mortar and pestle.

“Zunda” is something you cannot order in the restaurants nor buy from the shops even in Japan.

So, try it and feel how it tastes like.


Zunda / Edamame Dumpling

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300g~400g edamame (green young soybeans)

1 Tbsp salt – to rub on edamame

4 Tbsp mirin or 1~2 Tbsp maple syrup

1/4 tsp salt – for seasoning

(For sauce ) 

100ml kobudashi (sea kelp soup stock) or water

1 Tbsp soy sauce

1 Tbsp mirin (sweet rice wine) or 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup

1 Tbsp maple syrup

1 tsp potato starch – dissolve with 1 Tbsp water


1.   First make sauce.  Combine all the ingredients for sauce in a saucepan and cook till thickened to pouring consistency over low flame. 

2.   Heat up mirin in the saucepan and cook for a minute to evaporate the alcohol and obtain 2Tbsp of syrup.  (You can skip this procedure if you use the maple syrup.) 

3.   Bring a potful of water to a boil.  Meantime detach the beans from the stalks and wash if you are using the fresh edamame.  Rub salt around them and leave aside for 5~10 min. 

4.   Transfer the edamame in rapidly boiling water.  Cook till soft.  If the scum appears on the surface, remove with a skimmer. 

5.   Drain water and let it cool down to the temperature that you can handle.

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6.   Take the beans out of the pods, remove the membrane of each beans.

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 empty pods and membrane

7.   Make them into the paste using either the blender or the mortar and the pestle.  

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Edamame in the mortar made of clay

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need to mash further

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8.   Add either cooked mirin or maple syrup and salt for seasoning and mix further.

9.   Spread the cling wrap on the table, place some edamame paste on it (about 20g), wrap and shape into a ball.  Repeat this procedure till using up all the paste.

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10.         Place on the serving plate and pour the sauce over them.

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Happy Cooking!

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