Japanese Chicken Doria (Rice Gratin)

10:04 PM

My first encounter with this dish took place in very famous food joint in Japan called Saizeriya. They have a beautiful restaurant very near to where we lived in Kawasaki. So one fine evening all excited hubby with a promise to feed us good food took us there. The food was amazingly good and unlike other Japanese restaurants were very reasonably priced. The first time we gorged on the mushroom salsa pizza, Insalata caprese , Paella and what not. The second time we wanted to experiment out of our familiar food comfort zone and ordered this Chicken Doria. The picture on the menu made us believe that it's going to be another type of pizza. But when it came to the table and we digged in it was totally different…a rice based baked main-course which tasted devilishly delicious with loads of molten cheese on top. My 4 year old little boy loved it so much that he almost finished a bowlful and I definitely got my clue from there.

Doria is the Japanese name of Rice gratin. Gratin for that matter is a French cooking technique where ingredients are spread on a shallow baking bowl and then formed a crust on top made of cheese, bread crumbs, butter etc and grilled or broiled to make it brown and little crisp. The main ingredient for this dish could be anything from vegetables to meat to potatoes or seafood. The Japanese Doria mainly is a rice based gratin, where the rice is cooked with meat or seafood and then layered on a shallow baking dish. The whole thing is then topped with white sauce (Bechamel sauce) and loads of cheese before putting it under broiler.

I tried to recreate the dish with leftover rice and lots of vegetables to make it a quick balanced meal. Its perfect for lunchbox and even as a main course for small get togethers where you can serve the dish in individual baking dishes or aluminium foil bowls. To make things easier keep everything ready ie. Layer the cooked rice in indivudual bowls, keep he grated cheese and white sauce handy. Just before mealtime layer and bake for a stunning decadent golden main course. I often make this for my husband and son's lunch box and use leftover rice to cook it with veggies and chicken which I then keep in the fridge along with the white sauce. In morning quickly assemble everything together and bake in a preheated oven.

Sorry for these bad pictures, had to click it quickly at 8 in the morning just before Hubby and sonny boy headed out for the day.

Japanese Chicken Doria
(Serves 2)

Cooked rice: 2 cups (I always used leftover Basmati or Japanese rice)
Minced chicken: ½ cup
Chopped vegetables: 1 cup (tightly packed) You can use a mix of carrot, beans, broccoli, potato, peas, snowpeas, asparagus, spinach, cabbage, capsicum etc.)
Mushroom: 1/3 cup cleaned and chopped
Onion: 1 medium (sliced)
Butter: 1 tbsp (I used olive oil)
Oil: 1 tbsp (I used olive oil)
Pepper powder: ½ tsp
Lemon juice: ½ tsp

For the white sauce:
Flour: 11/2 tbsp
Butter: 11/2 tbsp
Milk: 11/2 cups
Pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper powder

Cheese: to top the whole dish, I used mozzarella

Heat the oil and butter in a big pan or kadhai and fry the onion for a minute. Add the vegetables, mushroom, salt and pepper powder fry till the raw smell is gone (2 minutes.) add the chicken and fry again till the chicken pieces turn white and the juice from it is dried (another 3-4 minutes). Add the rice, lemon juice and cook for 2-3 minutes till the rice is coated with the vegetables and spices. There should not be any extra moisture in it. Keep the salt on a lower side as most cheeses are little salty. Keep aside.

To prepare the white sauce you need a sturdy whisk. Warm the milk in a microwave and keep handy. Heat the butter and add the flour, salt and pepper powder. Cook it on low flame till the raw smell of the flour is gone. Add in the warmed milk and whisk continuously to get a lump free mix. Keep cooking on low and keep whisking. The sauce will thicken within a minute. Once its thick and creamy, take off.

Now take a shallow baking dish. I prefer to use my Borosil 8”X8” square baking bowl for this along with a small Domit baking pan that you see in the picture. You can alternatively use aluminium shallow bowls for this.

Spread the rice in an even layer, cover it with a thin layer of white sauce and finally slice or grate your favourite cheese to top. Be generous with the cheese and entirely cover the whole dish to get a thick crust on top.

Bake in a pre-heated 210 C oven for 25-30 minutes until the top is golden. Serve hot and dig in with a spoon.

A Homemakers Notes:
You can also use prawns, shrimps or any other type of minced meat in stead of Chicken.

Ardent Meat lovers can make it without veggies but adding them makes it healthy and wholesome. 

To make things easier try adding store bought Bechamel sauce.

Linking this to The chicken chick blog hop at Kathy's.

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  1. Very new recipe to me. Looks amazing! Would like to have it now...:)

    today's post:

  2. I know nothing abt japanese food except sushi... thanx fr ths post

  3. Very nice and new recipe Sayanithi, looks awesome. Thanks for sharing. I am new to your space, you have wonderful collection of recipes. Thanks for stopping by my space, happily following you.

  4. This sounds like such an amazing way to use leftover rice..am so loving the idea.

  5. Never know that even Japanese makes gratin with rice, inviting food..

  6. Interesting and love the recipe.

  7. What a lovely dish...Must try this, we are big rice-lovers at home, so this sounds perfect !

  8. gratin with rice looks delicious and sure is a comfort food especially in this chilly weather...yummy dish :-)

  9. I have never cooked any Japanese food. Tasted some susi here and loved it. You have made this very nicely. Thanks for sharing.

  10. That's a lovely looking dish.. Looks yummy & easy to make :)

  11. We like this food, and we like to invite you to upload your unusual delecious & uneplored recipe on Find best dishes at restaurants in Ahmedabad


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