Nikujyaga, Japanese meat and potato recipe

Nikujyaga

 

Nikujaga (肉じゃが?) (meaning meat-potato) is a Japanese dish of meat, potatoes and onion stewed in sweetened soy sauce, sometimes with ito konnyaku and vegetables. Generally, potatoes make up the bulk of the dish, with meat mostly serving as a source of flavor. It usually is boiled until most of the liquid is evaporated. Thinly sliced beef is the most common meat used in Nikujyaga, although minced/ground beef is also popular. Pork is often used instead of beef in eastern Japan.

Nikujaga is a common home-cooked winter dish, served with a bowl of white rice and miso soup. It is also sometimes seen in izakayas. Nikujaga is considered comfort food, and some Japanese claim they crave it if they do not eat it for a long period of time[citation needed].




Nikujaga was invented by chefs of the Imperial Japanese Navy in the late 19th century. The story that Tōgō Heihachirō ordered naval cooks to create a version of the beef stews served in the British Royal Navy was devised as part of an ongoing campaign beginning in 1895 to promote the city of Maizuru, Kyoto, which hosted an Imperial Japanese Navy base where Tōgō was stationed, as the birthplace of nikujaga.[1] The municipal government of Kure, Hiroshima, responded in 1998 with a competing claim that Tōgō commissioned the dish while serving as chief of staff of the Kure naval base. If you want to read more, go to this page.

What is Shirataki? (or Itokon nyaku)

shirataki

Shirataki (白滝?, often written with the hiragana しらたき) are very low carbohydrate, low calorie, thin, translucent, gelatinous traditional Japanese noodles made from devil’s tongue yam (elephant yam or the konjac yam).[1] The word “shirataki” means “white waterfall”, describing the appearance of these noodles. Largely composed of water and glucomannan, a water-soluble dietary fiber, they have little flavor of their own. 

There used to be a difference in manufacturing methods; in the Kansai region of Japan, ito konnyaku was prepared by cutting konnyaku jelly into threads, while in the Kantō region, shirataki was prepared by extruding konnyaku sol through small holes into a hot lime solution in high concentration.[7] Nowadays, both are prepared using the latter method. Ito konnyaku is generally thicker than shirataki, with a square cross section and a darker color. It is preferred in the Kansai region.




Curry Udon, Trip to Japan 2011

trip japan 2011

I discovered new Curry Udon restaurant in Japan.  I went to Aoyama to have my hair cut during my visit. And this was the first time I went to this beauty salon. It took me about 5 hrs to finish styling my hair. Anyway, I was very hungry because I didn’t eat anything at all that day! Around 8pm, I asked my beautician where I should go to eat quickly. I didn’t want to McDonald or any Western style fast food place. She said I should go to Senkichi Curry Udon Restaurant on the way to go the subway station. I have never heard of this restaurant’s name before. So I was thinking this is a small mom and pop kind of restaurant. I was wrong. It is a chain Udon restaurant. Wow! Since I left Japan, they are always changing. Just like the salon people said, it is a good tasting restaurant and inexpensive. I think it was 680yen. (About $7 U.S. dollar) Usually, curry udon is a darker colored soup, but this is a creamy looking soup. I was happy that I could eat something new, and didn’t go to McDonalds.




What is Udon?

Udon  is a type of thick wheat-flour noodle popular in Japanese cuisine.

Udon is usually served hot as noodle soup in a mildly flavoured broth, in its simplest form as kake udon, served in kakejiru made of dashi, soy sauce (shōyu), and mirin. It is usually topped with thinly chopped scallions. Other common toppings include tempura, often prawn or kakiage (a type of mixed tempura fritter), or abura age, a type of deep-fried tofu pockets seasoned with sugar, mirin, and soy sauce. A thin slice of kamaboko, a halfmoon-shaped fish cake, is often added. Shichimi can be added to taste. If you read more, go to this page.

trip japan 2011

I don’t think I can order only curry udon itself. Their menu is always set which means with rice. I couldn’t finish the rice. It was too much Carbohydrates for me. This picture is the original Senkichi Curry Udon. There are many more different flavors.

カレーうどん千吉オフィシャルサイト:Curry Udon Senkichi Official Site

trip japan 2011

 You can eat at the counter or the table.




Yakisoba Noodle Recipe

Yakisoba Noodle Recipe

This is a recipe for Yakisoba noodle from package. This meal is popular Japanese noodle and very quick easy recipe. If you go to Japanese restaurant, you may find it – popular Japanese noodle.

It is very quick and easy recipes, you can easily cook yourself! It is packaged food; you may find frozen section in Asian super market or your own local grocery store.
The package looks like this.

YouTube Preview Image




Ingredients:

*Yakisoba package
*Cabbage ————————–half of small one
*Meat —————————– anything you want, shrimp would be good also
*Bean sprouts ———————-if you buy small container, I put them all

I have a meat slicer. I use it a lot. Many Japanese cooking use very thin meat which is Philly steak cut like. (You may be able to find Philly steak cut beef at any grocery store) I start seeing Philly cut recently. I buy regular meat (steak meat) and cut it by myself.

How to cut so thin? I will write on the other page again. But easy way is freeze the meat half way, and use slicer. You can slice paper thin this way. Otherwise, it is very difficult to slice it.

This time I sliced half frozen pork chop.
1. Put oil in the frying pan.

2. Cook meats first but not all the way. Because, it is thin meat, you don’t want to over cook. It will be very tough.

3. Put cabbage and cook together.

4. Put noodle after all vegetables are cooked.

***You should have defrosted the noodles before you put them in the wok. If you don’t feel noodles are loosening, put half cup of water. Put lid on for about few minutes.

5. Mix all together and put the bean sprouts. Bean sprouts cook quickly, if you like very soft; you can put this when you put cabbage. I like crunchy, so I put it last.

6. Lastly, you put powder sauce and mix together.

It is very easy!