Sunday, January 8, 2012

Donabe + Neko Nabe

As I mentioned in my last post, I got pretty lucky this Christmas. This donabe is another wonderful gift from Mum. Donabe are the traditional clay pots used to make nabemono, the deliciously perfect Japanese soups usually called "hot pots" in the US.

I started making nabemono a year or so ago, when I discovered this wonderful sukiyaki recipe, and subsequently its source, Japanese Hot Pots by Tadashi Ono & Harris Salat.

I've been using my faithful little red dutch-oven casserole, and it does just fine, but I think it is too deep and narrow for proper nabe simmering, so I really wanted a donabe. The first thing to know about a donabe is that you ought to season it. They are not glazed on the bottom, and are slightly porous when you get them. Mine came with good directions, but I'm glad I did a little research online first. I found great instructions (and learned some interesting things) in this post on Thyme Bombe. These directions are especially good if you're dealing with a poky old apartment range like mine.
  Nabe are wonderful for winter dinners. They're light, but very filling, mostly healthy, and incredibly comforting. Best of all, once you have some basics in your cupboard, you can make them with just about anything you have on hand. I made this one with mostly nontraditional ingredients. I like to use enoki and oyster mushrooms, bok choy, and colorful Asian greens like shungiku, but decided to keep it simple after a busy week and lots of errands.
It is also worth noting that cats love to nap in donabe, prehaps because they are cat-sized. If you want to die of cute, Google "neko-nabe". See what I mean?
from Cook Tells A Story

No comments:

Post a Comment