When the cold of a Japanese winter starts to pierce right through you, there's no better way to warm up and fill your stomach than to enjoy a steaming hotpot for a delicious one-pot meal! By yourself, with friends or family, at home or on the town, Japan's one-pot meals are the perfect way to enjoy the bounty of the winter season in the toasty comfort of the indoors!
One-pot meals usually consist of a big pot, often earthenware, of seasoned broth which sits on some kind of heating element like a portable stove on the dining table. Into this goes pre-sliced ingredients which are cooked at the table by the diners as the meal progresses, with each diner adding what they please to the pot, then plucking it out when it's cooked.
Meals run the gamut in styles; from traditional to novelty (think Italian style with tomatoes and wine!), and from casual (like chicken or pork) to fancy (like lobster or crab). Meat lovers can enjoy sukiyaki or shabu shabu; thinly sliced beef (and pork for shabu shabu) is simmered with other ingredients in a sweet, salty base for sukiyaki and lightly boiled in water for shabu shabu. For those who prefer meatless meals, yudofu is the answer! Tofu is cooked in water or a lightly flavored broth, then eaten with flavorful condiments.
While single person one-pot meals are gaining in popularity, nothing is more fun than a group of friends or family clustered around a piping hot one-pot meal!
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