Sukiyaki, Japanese big dinner

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As Christmas is approaching, I wish you a nice holiday season. So let’s have a sukiyaki party !
It’s a party meal designed to showcase delicious premium Japanese beef and season produce. A hot pot to cook and share on the table.

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The ingredients are cut, cleaned, prepared and presented on big trays on the table.
First tray : fungi, konnyaku noodles and grilled tofu.
There were 4 types of mushrooms : shimeji, enoki, dry and soaked maitake and fresh kikurage.

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Second tray : negi leeks, onions, soaked yakifu (gluten croutons) and kikuna (chrysanthemum greens).

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Third tray : the beef. Wagyu, Japanese traditionally raised cows. Beside you can see cubes of beef fat.

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Each eater is given a bowl with a good fresh egg. Whisk your egg with the chopsticks and get ready to dip you ingredients in this sauce.

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First step : greasing the pot with fat and roasting the first slices. They can be enjoyed this way as the beef is delicious, just on its own.

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That’s the technique : melt some fat, add some meat, pour a little sugar, then a little shoyu (sauce sauce), a little sake. Mix and cook.

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All the other ingredients are added in small batches…

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For dessert… well, there are no desserts for Japanese meal. So that’s a French tarte Tatin, made with Japanese apples.

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Sashimi lunch

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A classic Japanese meal around a dish of sashimi. I prepared the sides.

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Steamed kabocha pumpkin and ninniku no me garlic stalks. With soy sauce.

**I simply place the veggies in a steaming basket on top of a boiling water pot, or in the steaming mode of the microwave. Thin kabocha slices take 8 to 10 minutes. Garlic stalks only need 3 o 4 minutes to be at my taste. I add sesame seeds and soy sauce when I serve them.

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The sashimi : ika (calamari), buri (yellow tail) and ama ebi (nordic shrimps).

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An umeboshi (salted plum).

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Tofu with oboro kombu (seaweed), seasoned with the soy sauce left after the sashimi dipping.

**How to choose or make tofu.

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The miso soup with hijiki seaweed, shimeji mushrooms and kintoki red carrots.

Making miso soup

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Add rice. That’s a complete Japanese menu.

**Cooking Japanese rice

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Osaka negiyaki, powered up.

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ねぎ焼き negiyaki
A fresh blog of the classic popular food of Osaka to replace or complete the old tuto.
Keep it really simple and don’t believe you need many ingredients, as it’s originally poor people cuisine, that was made with what was available that day. It’s easily made plant-based.

Here is a typical list of variations of negiyaki you can order in shops around here :

牛すじねぎ焼き gyusuji negiyaki (beef tendon)
豚ねぎ焼き buta negiyaki (pork)
イカねぎ焼き ika … (calamari)
えびねぎ焼き ebi … (shrimps)
豚キムチねぎ焼き buta kimchi … (pork kimchi)
牛すじキムチねぎ焼き gyusuji kimchi … (beef tendon kimchi)
牛すじもちねぎ焼き gyusuji mochi … (beef tendon mochi)
牛すじしょうがねぎ焼き gyusuji shoga …(beef tendon ginger)
ミックスねぎ焼き mix negiyaki …(=we’ll open the fridge and push everything there’s in into your dish)

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Check list :
negi leeks and nikomi (or any other)
-batter
-sauces and garnishing powders
-options : egg, tenkasu
-hot plate and oil

Osaka style :
Options and garnishing (negi and nikomi) are added to the batter at the last minute. Each guest chooses additions or not.

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Negi, scallions, Spring onions…. that’s the base of the dish. You need lots of negi greens. Cut thinly.

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This is konnyaku eringi ginger nikomi (recipe here).
I am probably the only person putting this in negiyaki. The classic version is : konnyaku gyusuji nikomi.
The gyusuji is beef tendon, with the meat that stays around, and that’s a very cheap cut of beef. It is prepared the same way I prepared the eringi. You can make some other meat or mushroom stew as you like.

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BATTER, gourmande style :
Grated nagaimo (about 1/2 cup), flour (1 cup), fish flakes. And enough water to get a creamy texture. Whip well.

Grating the yama imo

Veg’ version : skip the fish flakes, replace water by vegan kombu dashi (recipe here).
Gluten free version : replace flour by rice flour.
Imo free version : replace by grated potato or corn starch + a little baking powder.

Options :

They are not necessary for the classic version, but if you feel more hungry or like them, add what you want, that’s the rule of the game (okonomi = what you want). These 2, you read about on many blogs, they are often found in the rest of Japan, not so systematically here in Osaka :

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Egg. The reasons to not add to the original batter :
-some people don’t want egg (it’s the biggest allergy in Japan)
– texture, with egg, it would make it a harder pancake. In many shops, they add the egg whole egg onto the rest, already on the hotplate and break it and mix with chopsticks.

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Tenkasu. Tempura crumbles.

Others :
beni shoga pickled ginger,
kimchi,
raw meat, raw seafood,
mochi (rice cakes, use the tiny cubes arare, or thin slices),
tofu, cheese,
other veggies, sausage, ham, veggie pickles (tsukemono), salty seafood…

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Heat the hot plate (your skillet). Pass oil with a kitchen paper.

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MIXING :
In a bowl, put a cup of negi, 1/4 cup of nikomi, other options, a whole egg if you use it, a cup of batter. You can add more fish flakes if you wish. Mix roughly with chopsticks or a fork.

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COOKING
Pour everything on the plate, at middle heat. You can cover or not. When it’s all hardened, flip with 2 spatulas. (I cut it in 2 to flip with only one spatula… who cares ?).

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TOPPINGS :

All optional, as you like it, if you want some. A bare negiyaki is good too.

Sauce and mayo :

-the sauce is a thickened and sweetened worcester. The original sauce (called Ikari) was a copycat of LeaPerrins, sold to Kobe’s Brit expats.
Here I have a ready sauce, which is plant-based. If you don’t have it, LeaPerrins steak sauce is very similar. Or thicken the liquid classic worcester with corn starch (simmer a little, sweeten to taste) or by mixing with ketchup. Many shops make their sauce that way.Use a brush to paint it on the top.

-the mayonnaise. It is made more liquid by adding either milk, white wine or lemon juice. (to make easy egg mayo /// to make tofunaise).
To make nice drizzles, put the sauce and mayo in some plastic bottles with a tubular top. I don’t have that.

Variations :
-ketchup
shoyu (soy sauce, thickened)
ponzu (soy sauce + citrus juice)
-steak sauces

Powders (found in Japanese grocery stores) :
kezuribushi fish flakes, or fish powder
aonori seaweed
shichimi togarashi, 7 spice mix

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SERVING
When it’s cooked, put the heat on minimum, decorate.
Let on the plate while eating. Cut small wedges that you push toward guests that can heat directly from the plate, or on a small plate, while the rest stays hot.

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Today’s bibinbap

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Korean lunch : bibinbap, the colorful rice bowl.
Put rice to cook in the cooker and let’s go :

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Namul veggies (preparation here)

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Azuki-natto : I heated onion and cooked azuki beans with a little oil. When the onions were cooked, added a little miso and natto and mashed roughly.

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The soup is soaking water of shiitake mushrooms (those used for the namul), in it, I cooked mini-radish and added cubes of silky tofu.
Also get some kimchi, a egg yolk and fragrant sesame oil.

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Put all the garnishing veggies on very hot rice, add a egg yolk, a drizzle of sesame oil. Serve with the hot soup.

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Add a little broth in the bowl, mix and enjoy :

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Autumn namul

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Namul is the name of Korean style blanched veggies.

The boring supermarket version, all year round the same :
namul set
Boiled spinach, soy bean sprouts, zenmai fern and daikon radish.

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Home-made version, in Spring.
So this time with Autumn produce :

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I had suguna kabocha. I grated and steamed it, added only sesame oil and garlic.

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Soy bean sprouts, steamed, with soy sauce, a little hot chili, garlic, sesame oil.

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Konnyaku. I’ve added re-hydrated shiitake mushrooms. with soy sauce, a little hot chili, garlic, sesame oil. Let overnight.

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Leafy radish. Blanched and refreshed the greens in cold water. Added garlic and sesame oil.

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The 4 dishes :

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Konnyaku and eringii in ginger nikomi

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An easy Japanese dish.

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Konnyaku (konjac). You can use blocks too, just cut them in slices or cubes.

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Eringi mushrooms, cut in cubes.

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Ginger. Minced. I put a good amount.

Kombu seaweed. A small cut. Later after cooking, I cut it into ribbons.
Soy sauce and mirin (or sake + sugar), 3 tbs of each. A little red hot chili if you want. Cover with water. Let simmer. I cooked 30 minutes.

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Reheat the next day. Enjoy as a rice topping, a side dish or in negiyaki.

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Arare rice crackers : zarame ume + shoyu

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Shoyu arare (soy sauce caramel rice cracker).

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Ume zarame arare (plum and sugar rice cracker).
They are 2 classic flavors for Japanese rice crackers.
You had already seen :

savory arare
matcha arare

Let’s make 2 new types of Japanese rice crackers. Here is my simplified recipe :

Cut a mochi in cubes.
Everything about mochi (click)

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Let dry 2 days.

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Toast till golden in the oven toaster.

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ザラメ This square candy sugar is called zarame.

DSC08954-001 umeboshi pickled plum

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For the plum sugar flavor, pass in a mix of pasted umeboshi flesh and sarame sugar, dry in the toaster a few minutes, add more sarame sugar.

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For the shoyu, put a block or a tbs of kurozato black sugar in a sauce pan with a little water. When sugar has melted add some soy sauce, simmer till it gets syrupy. Coat the arare.

I have no idea about how long you can keep them. They disappear immediately after the photos are taken.

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