Japanese winter warmer

Japanese winter warmer

The winter season is now upon us and the days are  dark and cold. What's a better way to lift our spirits and keep chill at bay than good winter warming food, such as stew, casseroles and roast...yum! One of my favourites is to enjoy traditional Japanese Hot Pot.

What is ‘Japanese Hot Pot’?

When it comes to Japanese cuisine, a lot of people think of Sushi, Tempura, Teppanyaki, Sashimi etc. While we undoubtedly love these dishes, during the winter months, we often enjoy hotpot. In the UK, hotpot is referred to baked stew or casserole, but Japanese hotpot is different and it’s not cooked in the oven. Instead, you cook your ingredients, such as vegetables, fish and/or meat, in your preferred type of broth in a big ceramic cooking pot on a (often) portable stove.

A young family savours a meal at home; mum dishes up soup as dad and their child eat

Is it easy to make hot pot?

Yes, it is. It is a little bit like cooking dinner using slow cooker but it is much quicker! Preparation is straightforward: chop your ingredients into bite-sized pieces, prepare your cooking broth in a hot pot, then start cooking them by placing them into the hot pot! Simply put and cook them in the hop pot, wait until they are cooked to your preference, and then pick them up from the hot pot into your dish. Now, ENJOY!

Recipes for traditional hot pot

Feeling inspired to give it a go? Here are some easy recipes for the broth for you to try. Simply mix all the ingredients in a hot pot, if you have a portable stove, place it in the middle of the table and cook/simmer your favourite things to eat. You could use any vegetables, meat, poultry, fish etc. If you don’t have a portable stove, you can cook it on the normal stove of course!

Yose Nabe (my favourite, by the way!)

Soy sauce: 3 tbsp

Sake: 3 tbsp

Mirin: 2 tbsp

Dashi (powdered fish stock): 1 tsp

Water: 800cc

Traditional Japanese hot pot, laden with prawns, tofu, fish slices and veggies

(Yose Nabe)

Chanko Nabe

Sake: 50cc

Ground garlic: 1 tsp

Ground ginger: 1 tsp

Salt: 2/3 tsp

Powdered Chicken stock: 1 tsp

Water: 550cc

 A traditional Japanese hot pot with tofu, veg, mushrooms and chicken

(Chanko Nabe)


Soy sauce: 150 cc

Mirin: 100cc

Sake: 50cc

Sugar: 4 tbsp

Water: 100 cc

(for this broth I would recommend thinly sliced quality beef as it is the traditional way!)

Close-up of genuine Japanese sukiyaki; thin beef slices, veggies, tofu and mushrooms


Kimchi Nabe

Sake: 2 tbsp

Gochujang: 2 tbsp

Ground garlic: 2 tbsp

Miso: 2 tbsp

powdered chicken stock: ½ tsp

Water: 800 cc

A hot bowl of spicy Korean kimchi stew with tofu, mushrooms, spring onions and pork

(Kimchi Nabe)

You could use your normal large sauce pan for this, but if you want to try the authentic Japanese way, I recommend using a Japanese Hot Pot. As I mentioned above, most of the Japanese household own a portable stove, which you place in the middle of the table and everyone can serve themselves. To make more authentic, you may need a large serving plate to keep your cooking ingredients on side to top it up because you will probably not be able to put all the ingredients in one go. Cooking chopsticks, soup or Tayo bowls for each person to put their servings, soup spoons would be helpful to enjoy the tasty broth. Don’t have them all? Do not worry, The Japanese Shop got you covered. We have an extensive range of tableware, chopsticks and even hot pot etc. Have a browse and hope you find something to your taste.

Last but not least, The Japanese Shop would like to wish all our customers and readers have a wonderful festive season!

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