There is nothing more comforting and satisfying on a cold, wet day than a bowl…
Enjoy Sukiyaki, a popular Japanese Beef Hot Pot often cooked and served at the table, in the comfort of your own home. Especially satisfying on cooler days.
Going for a hot pot meal is a very popular dining experience in East Asian cuisine. Most are broth based fondues taken leisurely by a small group of people. The spread of dipping ingredients may be as simple or lavish as the budget allows.
All ingredients are carefully arranged on platters laid out at the table with a portable stove and pot. You will also be given various dipping sauces to flavor the food. Each diner gets to cook his or her own desired ingredient. At the end the meal, the rich broth is usually served with noodles to soak up all that tasty goodness.
Sukiyaki is a Japanese Beef Hot Pot consisting of thinly sliced beef simmered in a slightly sweet broth together with mushrooms, shirataki noodles tofu, and vegetables. You can eat it with rice, udon (thick noodles), or a combination of the two.
There are two ways to prepare this tasty meal but both yield more or less the same results. In the Kansai (Osaka and Kyoto) region, the beef is first grilled in the pan. Then the other ingredients are added before the broth is poured over. It is the opposite of the Kantō (Tokyo) region style where most of the ingredients, with the exception of the onions, are added into the broth. The choice is yours but today I am preparing it Kantō style.
Traditionally, suet (beef fat) is melted in a shallow cast iron pan before the other ingredients are added. I used one tablespoon of vegetable oil in place of the beef fat. If you choose to use suet, a small piece weighing about 1 ounce (28 grams) will suffice.
The recipe below was adapted from Emi Kazuko’s Japanese Cooking (affiliate link).
Sukiyaki (Japanese Beef Hot Pot)
- 4 to 8 shitake mushrooms
- 1 package shirataki noodles (7 oz)
- 1 package firm tofu (cubed) (12 oz/340g)
- 1 medium onion (thinly sliced)
- 4 green onions (cut at a diagonal into 2-inch lengths)
- 1 leek (cut at a diagonal into ¼ inch thick slices)
- 8 oz shungiku / tong ho / garland chrysanthemum, remove stems, wash, and drain (225g)
- 4 large Napa cabbage leaves (sliced)
- 1 lb thinly sliced beef (450g)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- A few tbsp ponzu and goma dare for dipping
- Wash and soak mushrooms in hot water for about 30 minutes until soften. Remove stems, strain, and reserve ½ cup (120ml) soaking liquid.
- In a large non-stick pan, sear tofu, about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Par-boil shirataki noodles in a small pan for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove and rinse in cold water. Drain and set aside.
- Arrange mushrooms, shirataki noodles, onion, green onions, leek, garland chrysanthemum , and Napa cabbage on a large platter or 2 separate plates. Beef should be placed on a separate plate.
- Combine all sauce ingredients in a jug.
- If you plan to cook at the table, then transfer everything to the table. You will also need a portable stove and a shallow cast iron pan. Prepare a bowl of rice and an empty bowl for each person. Alternatively, cooking may be done on the stove. Then transfer the entire pan to the table.
- Heat oil in the cast iron pan. Add onion and cook until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes.
- Add sugar and pour in half of the warishita sauce. Bring sauce to a gentle boil.
- Add half the mushrooms, shirataki noodles, leek, and Napa cabbage preferably side by side and not mixed. Keep space for green onions, garland chrysanthemum, and beef. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add half the green onions, garland chrysanthemum, and beef. Continue to cook until beef change color, about another 1 to 2 minutes. Dish out into individual bowls and serve immediately.
- Place the rest of the ingredients in the pan while you enjoy the first cooked batch beef and vegetables.
The cooked beef and vegetables are often dipped in a raw egg before eating. This is of course, optional. I prefer not to do that and so I served mine with some shabu-shabu (another beef hot pot) dipping sauces like ponzu and goma-dare (sesame sauce). The beef combines really well with these sauces.
NOTE: This post was updated on September 22nd, 2016 with additional write-up and new pictures. Slight changes were made to the recipe.
Enjoy…..and have a wonderful day! 😎