This is an especially comforting donabe hot pot dish. Saikyo miso is a (naturally) sweet white miso, and the dashi based broth is flavored with sesame paste and Saikyo miso. Ginger-rich chicken tsukune (meatballs) are really fluffy and also adds depth to the broth. They are cooked along with different vegetables and just so satisfying. This is like a Japanese version of “chicken soup” to nourish your body and soul.
Vegan optionOmit chicken or substitute with other vegetables. Use kombu and shiitake (vegan) dashi.
EquipmentClassic-style Donabe (2.5-qt/ 2,500 ml or larger)
Servings4 - 5
(For Tsukune – Chicken Meatballs)
- 1 lb (450 g) ground chicken
- 3 tablespoons beaten egg
- 1 tablespoon sake
- 1 tablespoon katakuriko (potato starch)
- 1/2 tablespoon finely-grated ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon moshio sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
- 6 tablespoons Saikyo miso
- 1 tablespoon white sesame paste
- 1 tablespoon white tamari or usukuchi shoyu (light-colored soy sauce)
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) sake
- 2 cups (500 ml) dashi
- 6 oz (180 g) kabocha squash, peeled and cut into 1/2” (1.2 cm) wedges
- 1 tablespoon finely-shredded ginger
- 7 oz (200 g) medium-firm tofu
- 5 oz (150 g) shimeji mushrooms
- 1 medium bok choy, quartered and cut in half
- 2 tablespoons ground roasted sesame seeds
- Mix all the ingredients for the Tsukune meat balls by hand in a bowl. Mix until smooth. Cover tightly with a plastic wrap and keep refrigerated for 30 min.
- Whisk together the ingredients for the broth in a bowl. Transfer to a donabe and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
- Add the kabocha, then form about 1.5” (3.5 cm)-diameter Tsukune and gently drop to the broth. Cover with lid and simmer for 4 – 5 minutes.
- Add the ginger, tofu shimeji and bottom part of the bok choy. Cover again and simmer for 2 – 3 minutes or until everything is cooked through.
- Add the remaining bok choy and sprinkle the sesame seeds.
- Serve into individual bowls at a table with yuzu-kosho on the side.
Put all the ingredients for the tsukune (chicken meatballs) in a bowl and mix well.
Everything is ready to cook!