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Pleased to Meat You: Beef in Japan

June 27, 2016

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Japanese Beef Favorites

Beef in Japan is traditionally expensive, and Japanese serving sizes tend to be modest. These may be some reasons why, in most Japanese recipes, beef is always sliced thin. Dishes include the following:

Shabu shabu is named for the sound the beef makes as it's briefly swished in a hot broth before being dipped in a savory sauce and eaten. The dish probably derives from the Mongolian hot pot.

Niku-jaga is a popular simmered fusion dish. Thinly sliced beef is cooked in a sweet dashi and soy-sauce stock along with “Western” vegetables such as carrot, potato and onion.

Gyudon beef bowl is eaten worldwide at fast-food chains. The mixture of beef and onions placed on top of rice is not unlike sukiyaki, and is simmered in a mixture of soy sauce and sugar or mirin – sweet sake.

Yakiniku is the Japanese take on Korean-style BBQ. Diners grill their own thin cuts of beef at the table then dip them in a hot and sweet soy-based sauce.

Niku-dofu is a classic one-pot dish similar to sukiyaki but much easier to make. Ingredients include sliced beef, tofu and spring onions, simmered together in a soy sauce, mirin and sugar mixture.

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