Tag Archives: beef

Nikujaga (Meat and Potato Stew)

This is another of my favourite Japanese home cooking dish. Nikujaga – tender beef with chunky onions and potatoes in a slightly sweet and salty broth. Thinly sliced beef is normally used but I used rolled sliced beef meant for shabu-shabu (hot pot) instead, which doesn’t require additional chopping. The beef cooks really fast so you simmer the dish just until the potatoes are soft to your liking. I had ran out of mirin so I added extra sugar and wine.

(Based on a Harumi Kurihara recipe)

1 lb thinly sliced beef, chopped into bite-size pieces.
2 large potatoes
2 large onions
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 cups dashi stock
1/2 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon sake or Japanese cooking wine
2 tablespoons mirin (or use another tablespoon each of the sugar and the wine)

1. Wash and peel the potatoes. Chop each into 6 – 8 large chunks. Soak the chunks in water for 5 minutes to remove excess starch then drain.
2. Cut each onion in 6 wedges.
3. Heat the oil in a large skillet and stir-fry the potatoes for a few minutes. Add the onions and beef and cook till the beef is no longer pink.
4. Add the dashi stock, sugar, mirin, soy sauce and sake to the skillet and bring to a boil before lowering the heat to a simmer. Skim the surface to remove any scum that floats up. Cover and simmer until the potatoes are cooked, 15 to 20 minutes.
5. Add extra soy sauce and sugar, if desired, before serving. Because this dish is salty, it goes well with steamed white rice.


Posted by on January 10, 2011 in Cooking, Food


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French Fridays with Dorie: Hachis Parmentier

Update 2 Nov: You can get the recipe here as well as listen to Dorie make it on the radio clip.

Hachis Parmentier (Ah-shee Pahr-mon-te-a) is this week’s FFWD pick. It’s a meat-and-mashed-potato pie similar to a shepherd’s pie. The recipe calls for homemade beef broth made by slow-boiling beef with vegetables but I didn’t have the time this week. I took the shortcut given by Dorie in the Bonne Idee (Good Idea) section and used store-bought beef broth and ground beef. The way I look at it, if we can use store-bought chicken broth to make the Vietnamese noodle soup, we can use store-bought beef broth for this pie. And I bought Wolfgang Puck’s Organic Beef Broth so I can tell myself it’s as good as homemade broth, non? 😉

Now, I don’t know how a made-from-scratch hachis parmentier tastes but my shortcut version was not bad. The filling was rich and savoury from the combination of beef and mild Italian sausages and the mashed potato topping was smooth and creamy with Gruyère cheese melted in. I did sauté 2 cloves of garlic before cooking the sausages and added some chopped cilantro (way more flavour than parsley) and dried thyme. The next time I make this I’ll make the broth. I’m curious to know how the boiled beef chunk would taste.

By the way, Dorie always says to remove the germ from the garlic. I looked up garlic germ and found that: a) the germ is the sprout in the centre of the garlic clove and b) the germ is acidic and can cause indigestion. So if you’re prone to indigestion due to garlic, remove the germ before using the garlic.

Go to French Fridays with Dorie and click on Leave Your Link (LYL): Hachis Parmentier to look at how others made their hachis parmentier especially those who followed the recipe fully!


Posted by on October 22, 2010 in Cooking, Food, French Fridays with Dorie


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