Shabu Shabu and Sukiyaki are both very popular and well known Japanese hot pot dishes outside of Japan. However, there are many other kinds of hot pot dishes that we also enjoy in Japan. Recently, I’ve shared Kimchi Nabe on my blog, and today I’d like to introduce Soy Milk Hot Pot, or as we call it Tonyu Nabe (豆乳鍋).
What is Soy Milk Hot Pot (Tonyu Nabe)
As the name of the recipe suggests, one of the key ingredients for this hot pot broth is soy milk (with dashi broth). Typical hot pot vegetables such as napa cabbage, leafy green vegetables, and thinly sliced pork are cooked in the broth and dipped in the ponzu sauce to enjoy.
The broth has a very delicate flavor. Due to the soy milk in the broth, it’s naturally sweet, and when you dip in tangy Ponzu sauce, the creamy soy milk adds another layer of savory flavors.
3 Big Flavors: Soy Milk, Miso, and Sesame Seeds
If you have tried my Vegetarian Ramen recipe, you’re probably already familiar with the golden combination of these 3 big flavors.
When you use soy milk in Japanese recipes, miso is one of the common ingredients that’s combined with soy milk. Sesame seeds are optional, but I definitely prefer to add them as they add aroma and enhance the flavor.
Soy milk is mild, sweet, and more neutral in flavor, so having salty, rich, bold miso is a wonderful compliment to soy milk.
How To Prevent Soy Milk from Curdling
If I had to add one “disturbing” part about this hot pot recipe, it is soy milk curdling. If you are like me who gets obsessive about skimming off the surface of broth until it’s nice and clean… this will probably bother you, and you might end up skimming more than enjoying the hot pot…
Boiling or simmering can cause the soy milk to curdle. You can reduce curdles by cooking on lower heat (without boiling), but it can’t be avoided from happening completely.
Hot Pot = Perfect Dinner for Busy Day!
In case you’ve never made hot pot at home, I can’t stress enough that there just aren’t many EASY & QUICK family meals than a hot pot. Here are quick 3 reasons why:
- Only one prep, which is cutting vegetables!
- Eat while you cook! The way we enjoy hot pot is to sit around the hot pot (with a portable gas burner on the table). While each of your family members talk about their day, the meal is being cooked. When you’re enjoying hot food, next batch of food is being cooked.
- Nutritious meal with all different (colors of) vegetables and protein in one meal!
I hope you enjoy making this Soy Milk Hot Pot recipe! If you try it, don’t forget to share your picture on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter with #JustOneCookbook. Thank you so much for reading, and till next time!
SIMILAR RECIPES TO SOY MILK HOT POT
- .8 lb. (400 g) thinly sliced pork (pork loin)
- 1 package enoki mushrooms
- 1 package shimeji mushrooms
- 4 shiitake mushrooms
- ¼ napa cabbage leaves
- ½ bunch Mizuna (or spinach)
- 1 shungiku (edible chrysanthemums, in Chinese tong hao, or skip)
- 1 Tokyo negi (or leek)
- 1 green onion/scallion
- 1 block medium firm tofu
- ½ medium daikon
- 1 carrot
- 1 gobo (burdock root)
- 3 cups (720 ml) awase dashi (Kombu dashi for vegetarian/vegan)
- ¼ cup (60 ml) sake
- ¼ cup (60 ml) mirin
- 2 cups (480 ml) warm unsweetened soy milk (microwave till it’s warm)
- ¼ cup (4 Tbsp.) miso (I use awase miso)
- 2 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
- kosher salt
- Hot Pot Soup: First we start making the soup and infuse with all the seasonings. In your donabe (earthenware pot) or other type of pot, add 3 cups (720 ml) dashi, ¼ cup (60 ml) sake and ¼ cup (60 ml) mirin. Cover and bring the soup to boil.
- Once boiling, add 2 cups (480 ml) warm soy milk. On medium heat, slowly heat up until the soup almost boils. Keep the lid uncovered and stir once in a while. Meanwhile, grind 2 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds in a pestle and mortar.
- Once the soup is hot, add ¼ cup (4 Tbsp.) miso and ground sesame seeds.
- Taste the soup and add kosher salt if you like it saltier. Depends on the brands and types of miso, the saltiness of your soup will vary. I recommend making the soup a little bit saltier since you’ll add vegetables that will release water and dilute the soup. Turn off the heat and set aside. Keep it covered.
- Hot Pot Ingredients: If your meat is not thinly sliced, you have to cut it thinly on your own. See how to do it here (picture is thinly sliced beef).
- Cut off and discard the bottom of enoki mushrooms and shimeji mushrooms.
- Cut off and discard the shiitake stem. If you like, make decorative cut on shiitake mushrooms (See how to do it here).
- Cut napa cabbage into 2” (5 cm) pieces widthwise. Then cut into 2-3 pieces lengthwise on the thick and white bottom part of napa cabbage so that it’ll be faster to cook.
- Cut Mizuna (or spinach) and shungiku into 2” (5 cm) pieces.
- Cut Tokyo negi (leek) into 1” (2.5 cm) thick pieces diagonally. Thinly slice green onion/scallion.
- Cut the tofu block into 1” (2.5 cm) slices.
- Using a vegetable peeler, peel the daikon and carrot thinly as if you are peeling their skin. You can cut these root vegetables into thinly rounds or quarters, but my family loves eating root vegetables in long paper-thin form.
- Peel the gobo (burdock root) same way as daikon and carrot. Soak the thinly sliced gobo in water for 15 minutes to prevent them from changing color.
- Put all the vegetables, mushrooms, and tofu in a platter.
- Start cooking bottom white part of napa cabbage leaves, Tokyo negi, tofu, mushrooms, and root vegetables (daikon, carrot, gobo) over medium heat. Basically you don’t want to put leafy vegetables that will become wilted too soon before other vegetables become tender. Don't put too many ingredients. You can save them for the next batch. Once the hot pot soup is close to boiling, turn down so that the hot pot soup will not overflow and curdle. You want to keep it hot, but not boil. You can either start serving food that’s cooked, or add raw meat and leafy vegetable to cook. Make sure to add meat when the soup is hot. Skim any curdles floating on the soup. You can eat the curdle or discard. Pour ponzu sauce in a small bowl and add chopped green onion/scallion. Dip cooked meat and vegetables in ponzu sauce to enjoy! Add more ingredients to the pot as you eat.