Fiction-Food Café

July 29, 2013

Rainy Day Special Mega Beef Bowl from "Persona 4"

          B totally loved playing "Persona 4 Golden" on his PSVita (somewhat) recently. P4G is an updated and expanded 2012 version of the original "Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4" which was released on the PS2 back in 2008. There is also a 2011-2012 animated series (which you can currently watch on Hulu). The game is an RPG and simulation game with a mix of mystery, battles, and social interactions. And great music.

          One of the places your character can visit in the rural town setting is the Chinese diner Aiya, located in Shopping District North. Among the tasty looking foods is Aiya's "Rainy Day Special 3,000 yen Mega Beef Bowl Challenge", you guessed it, served only on the days that it rains in the game. The bowl is so full of meat that your character imagines it could be a portal to the Meat Dimension. Take me there. Please. It's just a fun character thought though and is not a real thing in the game (sorry folks). Your character does increase in characteristics like diligence, courage, and so on from eating it however, but he can only finish the bowl when his understanding, knowledge, courage, and diligence are at maximum. And then the meal is free.

Note: "Beef bowl" in Japanese is gyūdon. The egg on top makes this dish tsukimi gyūdon or "moon viewing beef bowl" because the egg is symbolic of the moon in Japanese tradition. Egg is a very common addition on soups and donburi's (rice bowls, of which this is) and gives the dish a certain creaminess, but if you don't like runny eggs it's okay not to add it! I don't really like it so I ate mine without egg (see the image at the end of this post).

 Rainy Day Special Mega Beef Bowl (Gyūdon)

2 Cups Water
2 tsp. Dashi Powder
1 Tbsp. Aji-Mirin Sweet Cooking Rice Seasoning
1 Tbsp. Sugar
2 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
1 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce (optional)
1/2 tsp. Fresh Ginger (optional)
1/2 tsp. Minced Garlic (optional)
2 Onions, sliced
Steak-EZE Thin Sliced Beef Steaks (or very thinly sliced beef)
2 tsp. Cornstarch
Fluffy White Rice (made from 3 cups uncooked rice. Fluffy rice tips here!)
Small Egg, poached (How-to here, or use something like this or this!)

1. In a large pot bring the 2 cups of water to a boil & add the dashi powder. Stir until dissolved & then  add the mirin, sugar, soy sauce, onion slices, & optional Worcestershire, ginger, & garlic (I love it with these flavors!). Stir & continue to boil gently until the onions are caramelized. Reduce heat to medium.
2. Add the Steak-EZE steaks to the onions & sauce. Push the meat into the sauce & turn over occasionally to cook fully (this will only take a few minutes). Break the meat apart with your spoon (or two forks) & mix well with the onions & sauce.
3. Once the meat is cooked & incorporated, remove the meat & onions from the sauce into a large bowl using a slotted spoon or tongs. Leave the sauce in the pot. Using a measuring cup (or other small cup) scoop out a small amount of sauce & dissolve the cornstarch into it. Pour the cornstarch mixture into the pot & stir. Bring the sauce back to a boil & let it cook until it thickens. Reduce the heat to a low simmer to let it thicken more.
4. At this point you can put the onions & meat back into the pot with the sauce or pour the sauce into the bowl with the onions & meat. Serve mounded on top of fluffy rice with the poached egg added last (or not at all). And have confidence that you can finish it! Understanding! Knowledge! Courage! Diligence!


  1. How has nobody commented on this!!!? Persona 4 is amazing and the fact that you made the most iconic food item from the series is hilarious and I love it. I'd like to say I could finish it, but I'm not sure I have the courage, understanding, knowledge, or diligence.

    Great stuff!!

    1. Thank you! I'm glad you approve. This was a really yummy dish to make!

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Just sat down to have at this recipe, and it is DELICIOUS! This is the most in depth recipe for it on the internet and it really does taste amazing, though I ended up having to use a different steak brand, but it'll probably last me four days! (And I haven't eaten today in preparation for this behemoth of a beef bowl.

    Amazing job, and thank you!

  4. How big of a pot do you need for this?

    1. Hi! Sorry for the delay, I responded via my phone yesterday but for some reason it didn't go through! So, the pot I used was about 5" deep and about 7" in diameter, so not a really large pot like for canning or anything. But it did have a good depth. so more medium-large?

  5. is there anything i can replace the dashi and rice flavoring with? i cant order it online and i dont have what i need in the stores near me. well the rice stuff is discontinued.

  6. Thank you, thank you, thank you. My husband found your site by chance. We've been wanting to get our kids to try new foods and how perfect to try things they see in stories/films etc.
    I love Persona and this is my first make from your site. It was a huge hit and it's been decided that it will become a regular feature in our home.


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