Sesame Spinach Salad (Hourensou no Goma-ae)


Hourensou no goma-ae, literally translated to “spinach dressed in sesame sauce”, is a quick Japanese salad. Goma means sesame and ae meaning sauce. The sesame sauce is served as dressing to blanched vegetables. Two of the most popular vegetables used with goma-ae are spinach (hourensou) and green beans.  It is an enjoyment as an appetizer or a side dish, especially during summer time!  High in magnesium, one serving of cooked spinach will provide you 40% daily intake of magnesium.

Prep Time: 5 minutes           Cooking Time: 5 minutes

Yield: 2 servings Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound spinach, washed
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted and ground (see directions below)
  • 1 teaspoon whole sesame seeds


  • Blanch spinach in boiling water for 1 minute. Be careful not to overcook.
  • Cool spinach with cold water. Drain and lightly squeeze spinach to remove water.
  • Cut spinach into 2 inch sections. Set aside.
  • Toast 2 tablespoon sesame seeds over medium heat, stirring constantly, until turning gold and fragrant, roughly about 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Grind sesame seeds using a mortar and pestle or an electric grinder.
  • Mix ground sesame seeds with soy sauce and sugar in a small bowl.
  • Mix spinach with the sesame dressing.
  • Sprinkle 1 teaspoon whole sesame seeds over spinach and serve.


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