Japanese-style Marinated Kabocha Pumpkin

A refreshing Japanese-style marinade using dashi. The sourness piques your appetite.

Japanese-style Marinated Kabocha Pumpkin
Photographed by Manao Okamoto

Recipe by
Junko Takagi







Calorie count is per serving.
Excludes time marinating ingredients.

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 1/8 kabocha pumpkin (net 250 g)
  • 3 chicken tenderloins (approx. 100 g)
  • 1/4 onion (small)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • [Marinade]

    • 2 tbsp lemon juice
    • 1 tbsp soy sauce
    • 1 1/2 tbsp dashi
    • 2/3 tsp sugar
    • 1/2 dried red chili (seeds removed and cut into rounds)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Flour
  • Vegetable oil



Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and pith from inside the kabocha pumpkin, then briefly rinse and wrap in plastic wrap without drying it first. Place the wrapped kabocha pumpkin on a microwave-safe plate and microwave at 600 W for 1.5 min.


Cut the wedge of kabocha pumpkin in half across its center, then cut each half along its length into slices 5-7 mm thick. Thinly slice the onion, then briefly soak the slices in water and strain. Remove the stem and seeds from the red bell pepper, then cut into strips.


Remove the tendons from the chicken tenderloins if necessary, then cut into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle with a small amount of salt and pepper, then coat with 3 tbsp of flour.


Mix together the ingredients for the [marinade], then pour into a metal tray.


Oil a frying pan with 4-5 tbsp of vegetable oil and preheat over medium heat. Add the chicken tenderloin pieces and shallow-fry each side for 2-3 min, then remove and drain the oil. Shallow-fry the kabocha pumpkin for about 2-3 min per side, then remove and drain the oil.


Add the chicken and kabocha pumpkin to the marinade while they are still hot, then add the onion and red bell pepper and stir. Let marinate for about 15 min, then serve.


Also delicious when chilled in the refrigerator.