Updated: December 13, 2017
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Yosenabe: The Most Simple Nabe Recipe

"Yosenabe" is the most basic kind of nabe, a Japanese hotpot dish you can try. Basically, there are no rules when making yosenabe. Ingredients can be any vegetable, meat, or seafood you like. All you have to do is to cut the ingredients and put them into the pot, and simmer! Let's give it a try!

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What is "Yosenabe"...?

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"Yosenabe" might be one of the most adaptable Japanese dishes. There are no particular rules or ingredients you need to add when making one. Everything is up to you. The name "yosenabe" is a combination of "yose", which means to gather up and "nabe", which means hot pot in Japanese. This is my opinion, but since nabe is usually a dish you enjoy with your family and friends, "yose" might have the double meaning of gathering ingredients up and gathering with your family and friends.

This post will introduce the most basic ingredients you can have when making yosenabe and the simplest recipe.

Yosenabe recipe: The most basic

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Ingredients (4servings)

-300grams of any kind of meat (preferably thinly sliced)
-1/8 of Chinese cabbage
-Any kind of mushrooms you like
-200grams of tofu
-Chicken meatballs or fishballs if you like.
-1000ml of water
-Kelp (can be substituted with any kind of broth)
-50ml of sake
-50ml of sweet sake
-2spoon of soy sauce
-Some salt


Step1: Put water and kelp together into the pot and leave for at least 30minutes.

Step2: Cut into 5cm wide pieces the Chinese cabbage and leeks. The carrots would be better if cut thinly. Cut the mushrooms into bite-size pieces. Tofu blocks would be nice cut into 8 to 10 pieces.

Step3: Boil the pot after taking out the kelp.

Step4: Add sake, sweet sake (mirin), soy sauce, salt and make dashi soup.

Step5: Add meatballs and meat slices first. After they are well heated, add vegetables.

Step6: Gather around and let's eat!

Unique Ingredients you can also add to Yosenabe

Daikon oroshi, grated radish

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Adding some grated radish will totally change your yosenabe. when once added, its called "Mizorenabe". The name "Mizore" comes from how the grated radish looks like sleet.

Camembert Cheese

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Adding camembert cheese will make your yosenabe become like a cheese fondue. Melting cheese makes the flavor creamy and thick. Grind black peppers are the best match.


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If you want to give your yosenabe an Italian taste, adding some tomatoes will be the easiest way. The point is to add them at the end. If you have some fresh basil, it would be a nice addition too.


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Mochi goes well with yosenabe too. But there is one point you have to be careful when adding mochi, don't let them melt too much.

Gyoza: Chinese Dumplings

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Gyoza, or Chinese dumplings are also a unique ingredient you can add. Add them directly without roasting them. They taste like ravioli filled with pork meat!

Tonyu: Soymilk

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When making the nabe broth, you can add tonyu, soymilk instead of water to try some tonyu nabe. As you might know, tonyu is rich in protein and good for your health and also beauty, tonyu nabe is a popular kind of nabe among young women in Japan.

Don't forget to finish with "zosui"(雑炊)

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"Zosui" is how Japanese finish their nabe dishes. After finished eating nabe, Japanese people normally put some rice into the soup. Boil the pot once more and add some beaten eggs to make some "zosui", a Japanese risotto.

Sometimes Japanese people put in udon or any kind of noodles instead of rice to finish the meal. This is called "shime", which means to finish up in Japanese.

Try to Make your own Yosenabe!

Did you find this article interesting? Yosenabe is probably the most versatile Japanese dish. There are no rules, you can put in anything you want.
They are easy to make, you should give it a try!
Quite sure I'm a Ramen freak. Almost up to 200ramens in 2017. Not only ramens but also love to eat around and drink around.

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