Shabu Shabu Recipe:

Mongolian Shabu-Shabu

by Josh Day

Shabu-shabu. Sounds interesting and exotic, doesn't it?

My wife and I were introduced to this dish during a cruise trip this winter. The ship's restaurant said shabu-shabu is Mongolian in origin.

Here's Wikipedia:

The dish is traditionally made with thinly sliced beef, though modern preparations sometimes use pork, crab, chicken, duck, or lobster. Most often, tender ribeye steak is used, but less tender cuts such as top sirloin are also common.

Shabu-shabu is usually served with tofu and vegetables, including Chinese cabbage, chrysanthemum leaves, nori (edible seaweed), onions, carrots, shiitake mushrooms and enokitake mushrooms. In some places, Udon, Mochi and/or harusame noodles may also be served.

The dish is prepared by submerging a very thin slice of meat or a piece of vegetable in a pot of boiling water or dashi (broth) made with kombu (kelp) and swishing it back and forth several times. (The familiar swishing sound is where the dish gets its name. Shabu-shabu roughly translates to "swish-swish".) Cooked meat and vegetables are usually dipped in ponzu or "goma" (sesame seed) sauce before eating with a bowl of steamed white rice.

Once the meat and vegetables have been eaten, leftover water (now broth) from the pot is customarily combined with the remaining rice, and the resulting soup is usually eaten last. (

Let's get to the recipe, shall we?

Mongolian Shabu-Shabu

2 cans (32 oz) high quality organic beef broth or homemade beef stock
32 oz of water
1 head napa cabbage, thinly sliced (think Mongolian spaghetti!)
1 large carrot, thinly sliced
Shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
Enokitake mushrooms (they look like bean sprouts)
1 onion, cut into long but thin strips
Thinly sliced beef (ask your butcher for the most tender cuts of meat they have)
Cooked rice

Bring broth and water to a good boil. Add carrots and onions and let soup return to boil.

Drop in mushrooms and cabbage. Let soup come back to a boil. Stir.

Test the carrots. You want everything tender.

Lower heat to simmer.

Using a speared prong or fork, wrap meat around instrument and dip in broth. Cook to desired doneness -- ask your guests how they like their meat.

Serve meat on top of vegetables on a plate. Ladle soup and rice into two bowls.

This meal tastes even better when eaten by chopsticks.

Here's a quick note from Dr. Ben Kim:

This is actually quite a common way of eating in Korean and Chinese cultures, though getting more popular in Korean restaurants these days. The sesame-based dip is key, and it's quite a healthy dish, given the cooking method and ingredients, eh? Some Chinese and Korean folks just put all the ingredients in the water at one time and then eat straight from the pot.

Enokitake (didn't know the name until reading it in your e-mail) is added to a lot of different Korean soups, and I know for a fact that they're readily available in Korean and Chinese supermarkets throughout Toronto, so I imagine that you'll find some at a local Asian food store. Even though they're wildcrafted these days in our part of the world, they're really nice, eh?

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