Silver Boats

Gin-gami Mushi

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves



Appears in

At Home with Japanese Cooking

At Home with Japanese Cooking

By Elizabeth Andoh

Published 1986

  • About

Shiny packages of foil containing bite-size pieces of delicately seasoned shrimp, chicken and vegetables are steamed, then served very hot as a side dish with grilled or raw fish.


  • 4 large shrimp
  • ½ small chicken breast, about ¼ pound
  • 2 dried shiitaké (black Oriental mushrooms)
  • ½ cup warm water
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 4–5 inches softened konbu (kelp); leftovers from stock making are perfect
  • ¼ cup strained liquid from soaking black mushrooms
  • ½ teaspoon soy sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon saké (rice wine) Pinch of salt
  • 4 ten-by-six-inch sheets of aluminum foil
  • 4 thin slices of lemon


Devein and shell the shrimp, leaving the tail pieces intact. Remove skin and bone from the chicken and cut it into ¼-inch-thick slices, slightly on the diagonal (see sogi-giri cutting). Cut each of these in half or thirds to make bite-size pieces approximately inches square. Soak the dried mushrooms in warm water to which a pinch of sugar has been added, for 15–20 minutes. Strain and reserve the soaking liquid. Remove and discard the stems from the mushrooms and slice into quarters. Soak these again in plain warm water to cover for 10 minutes. Squeeze the mushroom pieces dry and discard this secondary liquid. Season the original strained mushroom liquid with soy sauce, rice wine and salt, and stir it. Cut kelp left from stock making into 1-inch squares. Or soak dried kelp in warm water to cover for 15 minutes before cutting.

Lay the sheets of aluminum foil on your work counter and place several pieces of kelp in the middle of each. On top of the kelp, lay a slice of lemon, 1 shrimp, several chicken slices and 2 mushroom quarters. Gather up the end pieces of foil as illustrated to form a boatlike shape. Pour in a tablespoon or so of seasoned mushroom liquid and twist top edges of foil together. Place the silver boats in a steamer and steam for 10–12 minutes. Remove with pot-holdered hands and serve immediately.