Although Japanese diners do not eat beef very often, sukiyaki is one of the most popular and well known of the nabemono dishes, both in Japan and in North America. If you choose to substitute bite-sized pieces of chicken for beef, this dish is called torisuki.
Nabemono dishes combine meat or seafood and vegetables in one pot to make a hearty and satisfying meal. In Japan, “nabe” cooking is done at the table, using a pot heated over a gas or charcoal burner.
Meals featuring nabemono are particularly popular in the winter because the heat of the burner warms the room as well as cooks the food.
1to 1 1/2 lb. rib-eye of beef
1 12-oz. block tofu, cut into 1-inch cubes*
1 tbsp. oil
1 bunch (about 6) scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 small can shirataki
1 8-oz. can sliced bamboo shoots, rinsed under cold, running water
1 c. sliced fresh mushrooms
1 ounces transparent bean thread noodles (also known also vermicelli or glass noodles)
1 c. soy sauce
1 1/2 c. water
3 tbsp. sugar
1. Slice beef very thinly. (If meat is slightly frozen, it is much easier to cut.)
2. Without removing the string wrapping around the transparent noodles, soak in hot water until they are pliable (about 5 minutes). Drain well.
3. Heat oil in frying pan and add scallions, hirataki, bamboo shoots, transparent bean thread noodles, mushrooms, beef and tofu.
4. Combine remaining ingredients to make a sauce. Pour sauce over meat and vegetables until they are half covered. Adjust heat so that sauce simmers.
5. After about 10 minutes, test a piece of meat to see if it is done.
6. Serve with hot rice.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
To make your nabemono dish, you can use an electric frying pan or casserole. If you want to cook at the table as the Japanese do, prepare your ingredients ahead of time and arrange them neatly on a platter. Then invite your family and friends to watch while you cook a delicious sukiyaki or mizutaki.
To make delicious and satisfying vegetarian sukiyaki, simply omit the beef from the recipe and double the amount of tofu.