Vegetable sukiyaki

I made this last night for dinner. It just serves one, but it’s easily doubled, tripled, quadrupled… Sukiyaki is the kind of dish that you can actually serve in the pot that it’s cooked in so the measurements are generally just for one bowl. As with stir-frys, you can add whatever vegetables you have on hand. I’ll give the recipe and then add some more suggestions.

Sukiyaki is a traditional Japanese soup. It’s typically made with a beef broth, but easily made vegetarian. Actually, there’s this amazing fake meat that I find sometimes at Asian grocery stores that would probably taste really good with it. Maybe I’ll try that next time.

Sukiyaki is very similar to a Chinese dish called a hot pot, so if you’ve ever had and enjoyed that, try this Japanese version!

Vegetable sukiyaki

1.5 cups water
handful dried Shiitake mushrooms
piece of seaweed (kelp is good, but anything works)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup chopped broccoli
1/2 of a red pepper, chopped
2 cups spinach OR bok choy OR other leafy green veggie
1 serving shirataki noodles

1. Make the stock. Boil the water with the mushrooms and seaweed for about 10 minutes.
2. Add the soy sauce and sugar; let the sugar dissolve.
3. Add all the veggies and let them boil for at least 5 minutes or until tender.
4. Meanwhile, boil water for the shirataki noodles and boil them for 3-4 minutes.
5. Drain the noodles and add them to the veggies. I drained them, put them in a bowl, and poured the veggies and broth overtop.
6. Serve with rice or alone.

Some other vegetables that taste great in Sukiyaki: scallions (I really wish I’d had some), baby corn, bamboo shoots, asparagus, napa cabbage, carrots, and probably many more that I haven’t tried. Sometimes I also top it with tofu!

The shirataki noodles worked very well. I had the classic, clear/white kind, but there are several more options. There’s a darker version that’s a grey, mottled color. There are also tofu shirataki noodles. For anyone who is unaware, shirataki noodles do not have calories. None, whatsoever. The tofu kind has very few. They are mostly made up of dietary fiber and are great for cleansing your system. They’re made from a type of yam, and most products that come from that yam are called konnyaku. They also make chunks of konnyaku that you can slice up and put in if you don’t want noodles. Konnyaku and shirataki noodles are found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store and they come in a little bag that’s filled with water. They’re becoming more common and you probably won’t have to go to an Asian grocery store to find them.