Nikujaga

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Just when you didn’t think there was any other way to make a meat and potato stew, look here at the Japanese Nikujaga. There are actually 2 versions of this that I make. V1 is cooked in a Dutch oven. V2 is cooked in a Crockpot.

Meat
V1 1 lb. beef (marinade 1 hour in 4 Tbsp. soy sauce and 1 Tbsp. brown sugar)
V2 1 lb. beef (marinade over night in 3 Tbsp. soy sauce, 1 Tbsp. sake, 1 Tbsp. marsala, 1 chopped green onion, 1 garlic clove sliced into small coins)

Mirepoix
1 onion – chopped
3 carrots – chopped 1 inch by ¼ inch
3 cloves garlic minced
½ Lb. Small potatoes cut – chopped into bite size pieces

Vegetables
V1 ½ cup snow peas
V2 1 cup or more chopped kale
V2 ½ onion sliced
5 chopped green onions (scallions)
1 cup mushrooms (shitake)

V1 Sauce
1 dash white wine
2 cups water (or stock)

V2 Sauce
3 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. sake
2 Tbsp. Marsala or sherry or mirin
2 cups Dashi stock (2 Tbsp. hon dashi [dried bonito] and 2 leaves dashi kombu [dried seaweed]).  In small sauce pan bring 2 cups of water to boil add dashi ingredient, let cook for 5 minutes, turn off heat, strain into the Crockpot.

Seasoning/Herbs/Oil
Salt and Pepper
Chu Chow Chili Oil
Peanut oil (couple of Tbsp.)

V1 Cooking instructions:

  1. Cook snow peas in boiling water for a minute. Let them cool and cut diagonally into 2-3 pieces.
  2. Cut thin beef into 2″ width pieces.
  3. In a large pot, heat oil at medium high temperature and cook beef until the color changes.
  4. Add potatoes, onions, and carrot, potatoes.
  5. Add water, cover, and cook it at low medium heat about 20 minutes or until potatoes get tender.
  6. Season with sugar, soy sauce, white wine, scallions, mushrooms and salt. Cook 15 minutes longer.
  7. Remove from heat and let it sit for 30 minutes. Then add snow peas.
  8. Serve as is or reheat.
  9. I like to add a dollop of Chu Chow Chili Oil on my dish

V2 Cooking instructions:

  1. Cut thin beef into 2″ width pieces.
  2. Brown meat somewhat in a pan with peanut oil, transfer to Crockpot
  3. Add the veggies, the sauce and the Dashi stock and cook on medium ~6 hours
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