Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Donabe Beef & Daikon Stew

This donabe dish is a very homey Japanese dish. You can make it with just a few main ingredients in a very simple process. With the thick-body and round shaped Soup & Stew Donabe, "Miso-shiru Nabe", the ingredients are braised effectively with the deep and round flavor result. I made it with sukiyaki slice beef this time, but sliced pork bellywould be also very nice. If you use sliced pork belly, you don't need to blanch the meat beforehand. You can cut the slices into bite-size pieces and add after step 1 in the recipe and sauté for a few minutes before adding the seasoning.

Beef & Daikon Stew
(for large-size soup & stew donabe, "Miso-shiru Nabe")

Ingredients: 4 servings
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 pound (450 g) daikon, cut into 3/4" (2 cm) thick discs and further cut into quarters
1 pound (450 g) thinly-sliced beef for sukiyaki, cut into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons sake
3 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons mirin
1 tablespoon raw brown sugar
1/2 cup (120 ml) dashi stock
1 small knob, ginger, sliced into very thin shreds
some sliced or crushed chili (optional)
some sansho powders

  1. Heat the sesame oil in Miso-shiru Nabe. Add the daikon and sauté over medium-heat for 8 - 10 minutes until daikon is lightly browned.
  2. Meanwhile, boil water in a separate pot and add the beef to blanch for 10 seconds. Drain and set aside. Add to Miso-shiru Nabe.
  3. Add the sake, soy sauce, mirin, sugar, and dashi stock. Stir. Spread the ginger on top. Line the surface with a piece of foil. Cover and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the daikon is tender. Turn down the heat if the broth starts boiling.
  4. Turn off the heat and let it rest for at least 30 minutes but a few hours will be better so that the flavors will nicely integrated. Reheat before it's ready to serve. Garnish with some chili.
  5. Serve into individual bowls with some sprinkle of sansho powder at the table.
The key is the resting time. This dish actually tastes even better the next day.

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Here's the variation of the dish. I added chicken and shiitake mushrooms instead of the beef and increased the amount of the dashi stock a little more so that it's more like a soupy stew. Since I found nice mustard greens, I added some at the end to finish cooking. It was great, too.

Happy donabe life.