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|Meat (usually thinly sliced beef), vegetables, soy sauce, sugar, and mirin|
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It consists of meat (usually thinly sliced beef) which is slowly cooked or simmered at the table, alongside vegetables and other ingredients, in a shallow iron pot in a mixture of soy sauce, sugar, and mirin. Before being eaten, the ingredients are usually dipped in a small bowl of raw, beaten eggs.
Popular ingredients cooked with the beef are:
- Tofu (usually seared firm tofu)
- Negi (a type of scallion)
- Leafy vegetables, such as Chinese cabbage and shungiku (Garland chrysanthemum leaves).
- Mushrooms such as shiitake and enokitake
- Jelly-noodles made out of konnyaku corm such as ito konnyaku or shirataki noodles.
Like other nabemono dishes, each region has a preferred way of cooking sukiyaki. The key difference is between the western Kansai region and the eastern Kantō region. In Tokyo, the ingredients are stewed in a prepared mixture of soy sauce, sugar, sake and mirin, whereas in Osaka, the meat is first grilled in the pan greased with tallow. After other ingredients are put over these, the liquid is poured into the pan. The shungiku are added when all the ingredients are simmering. A raw egg is broken into a serving bowl, one egg for each person. Some prefer to add a bit of soy sauce and the egg is lightly beaten. The meat and vegetables are dipped into this sauce before being eaten.
It is said to be advisable to place the jelly-noodles away from the beef because the calcium contained in the noodles can toughen meat.
Some anecdotes are known about the early history of sukiyaki. One is about a medieval nobleman. He stopped at a peasant's hut after a hunt and ordered him to cook the game. The peasant realized that his cooking utensils were improper for the noble, so he cleaned up his spade (suki in Japanese) and broiled (yaki) the meat on it. Another story is about the Portuguese in the sixteenth century in Japan, where beef was not common food. They eagerly ate meat everywhere, even on suki. Yet another history is that peasants would cook sweet potatoes in the field, doing so in their spades they would need to carry less gear.
In the 1860s when Japan was opened to foreigners, new cooking styles were also introduced. Cows, milk, meat, and eggs became widely used, and sukiyaki was the most popular way to serve them. The first sukiyaki restaurant, Isekuma, opened in Yokohama in 1862. Beef is the primary ingredient in today's sukiyaki. There were two main ways of cooking sukiyaki: a Kantō (Tokyo area) and a Kansai (Osaka area) style. In the Kantō way, the special cooking sauce's ingredients are already mixed. In the Kansai way, the sauce is mixed at the time of eating. But after the great Kanto earthquake of 1923, the people of Kantō temporarily moved to the Osaka area. While the people of Kantō were in Osaka, they got accustomed to the Kansai style of sukiyaki, and when they returned to Kantō, they introduced the Kansai sukiyaki style, where it has since become popular.
- Shabu-shabu is similar, but whereas sukiyaki is considered more sweet, shabu-shabu is more savory.
- Sukiyaki in Laos takes the form of a bowl of bean thread noodles, various vegetables, thinly-sliced beef and other meats or seafood, sukiyaki sauce, and a raw egg in beef broth. The sukiyaki sauce is made from coconut, fermented tofu, tahini, peanut butter, sugar, garlic, lime and spices.
- Thai suki or Thai sukiyaki is a very popular hot pot dish in Thailand and, increasingly, neighboring countries. Despite the name, it bears only a vague resemblance to Japanese sukiyaki.
- Hot pot
- Fondue Bourguignonne & Fondue chinoise
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (August 2009)|
- "すき焼きの語源・由来". 語源由来事典. Retrieved 2009-04-27.
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