Monday, 7 November 2011


I had been reading a lot about cookware in the last few months. After understanding the pros and cons of different materials (Cast iron, Anodized aluminium, Stainless steel and copper-core), I reckoned I want... Nah, I mean WE NEED a cast iron pot for braising and slow cooking. Last Saturday, we went to the Le Creuset outlet in Bicester Village in Oxfordshire and came home with a few cookware and stoneware. 

I felt so obliged to utilize my new acquisitions so I looked up in some cooking blogs written up especially for cast iron pots. After stuffing ourselves up with pizzas and KFC over the weekend, hubby and I were quite determined to have some Asian food tonight. Among a few recipes I found from Le Creuset blog in Taiwan, this sukiyaki is definitely the easiest and quickest. And Enoki mushroom just happens to be my hubby's favourite! I couldn't find any reason not to do it.

Sukiyaki is a Japanese dish in hot pot style. Sliced meat along with other vegetables are slowly cooked in a shallow iron pot. Traditionally it should be slowly simmered at the table, but we couldn't be bothered to take our portable butane stove out,  so I just finished cooking it in the kitchen and brought it out on the coffee table. It's just a perfect dish to warm our stomachs in cold winter's nights. :)

Adapted from:
"日式壽喜燒" from 幸福的味道.

My Ingredients: (Serves 2)
  • 300g hampshire breed free range pork shoulder steak, sliced
  • 160g enoki mushrooms (金菇)
  • 250g portabellini mushrooms
  • 1 small Pak Choi (小棠菜)
  • 1 box (396g) tofu
  • 1 salad onion (spring onion)
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 2 eggs
To make Sukiyaki Sauce:
  • 60ml dark soy sauce
  • 30ml mirin
  • 200ml water, plus extra
  • 2 tbsp of Oil
  • a pinch of sugar

My Method: 
  1. Add 2 tbsp of oil in the pan over medium high heat. When the oil is sizzling, add the chopped salad onion. Stir-fry for about 1 minute. Then add soy sauce, mirin, 200ml of water and a pinch of sugar to make the sukiyaki sauce.
  2. When the sukiyaki sauce is boiling, stir in pork shoulder slices and fry for about 5 minutes or till the pork is half cooked and turns white. Move the pork to one side of the pan.
  3. Add enoki mushrooms, portabellini mushrooms and tofu to cook for 5 minutes. Add more water if necessary to make sure the ingredients are all covered and soaked.
  4. Add Pak Choi and tomatos into the pan. Turn the heat down to low. Cover the pan with the lid. Allow to cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Serve immediately by taking the whole pot to the table. Remember to put a trivet to protect the table from heat damage. Crack an egg into each bowl, beat it briefly, pour a spoon or two of sukiyaki sauce from the pot and dig in!
One-line Verdict:
Easy peasey! Slightly more expensive than an average home-cooked meal but it's a perfect dish for cold winter nights.

    My Note:
    • I used a cast iron shallow casserole. A big flat fry pan can do too. Should NOT use wok or saucepan otherwise the ingredients would be mixed together.
    • This is a totally flexible recipe. We can just change the amount and type of meat and vegetable as we wish. For additional carbohydrates, Udon or noodle can also be added together with the mushrooms.
    • Pork shoulder is my favourite cut in UK. It's full of flavour and not as fatty as the equally flavoursome pork belly. Also it is very inexpensive. It usually costs 35-65p per 100 grams, which is a lot more affordable than other prime cuts.
    • Mirin is a Japanese alcoholic staple ingredient made from glutinous rice. It has a distinct sweet flavour to give meat a sheen and tone down the fishy smell of seafood. I got mine from Tesco.
    • Portabellini mushrooms are young specimen of Portabello mushrooms. It has a nutty flavour and tastes quite distinctly different from Shiitake mushrooms.
    • The name Pak Choi can be a little bit confusing in UK are commonly known as Siu Tong Choi (小棠菜) in Hong Kong. or Little Pak Choi (小白菜) in China.
    • Approximate cost of the main ingredients: £11

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