Hi friends, Kristy here today to talk about one of my all time favorite meals: shabu shabu. For those of you who are not familiar with shabu shabu, it is a Japanese hot pot dish that involves boiling thinly sliced meat and an assortment of veggies in water. The meat and veggies are then dipped in a special dipping sauce and eaten with rice. When you eat shabu shabu at a restaurant, you are usually seated at a bar with a small stove in front of you to keep the water in your pot warm or at a table where the stove top and pot are shared. But you can also make shabu shabu at home with very little equipment. Nami over at Just One Cookbook has a really great post on her blog about how to make shabu shabu. You can check it out here.
Without further ado, here are my top 5 reasons why you should try shabu shabu at home:
1. It’s healthy. Shabu shabu involves boiling meat and veggies so everything is fresh and nothing is fried or greasy. If you have a sensitive stomach like me, this is definitely one meal that won’t leave you hating life afterwards.
2. You can fully customize the ingredients to your liking. Don’t like beef? Use pork instead. Don’t eat meat at all? Just use tofu. Don’t like a particular veggie? Leave it out.
3. It makes it easier for you (and by you, I actually mean me) to get in some veggie servings. Shabu shabu often involves veggies such as cabbage, mushrooms and carrots. I’m not a big vegetable eater but I will scarf those veggies down like there’s no tomorrow when I’m eating shabu shabu.
4. It requires very little prep. All you need to do is wash and cut up the vegetables you are using. You don’t have to defrost anything, brown anything or marinate anything. You just dice it all up and you’re ready to go. It’s quick AND easy!
5. It’s foolproof. You seriously cannot mess this up because there’s really no cooking going on at all. All you do is add your ingredients into the pot with hot water, swish it around until it’s cooked and then take out one bite at a time.
Here’s a picture of my family chowing down on some shabu shabu at my house:
We’re doing the cooking on little portable butane stoves with clay pots that belonged to my grandma. But you could easily boil your ingredients in a pot on the regular stove. If you don’t have a clay pot, you could also try using a Dutch oven or Le Creuset type of pot instead.
And there’s one final bonus reason why I prefer to make shabu shabu at home instead of going to a restaurant. When we eat this delicious dish at home, we’re able to hang out with our dog Allie instead of having to leave her at home while we go to a restaurant. Here she is just being her cute self while we finish our dinner. This blanket is one of the first blankets she was given after joining our family and now we keep it at my house for her to use so she feels extra comfortable when she comes over. It’s not Christmas anymore but it’s so sweet to see how she still loves to lay on this blanket after all these years.
If you’ve never had shabu shabu before, we really hope you’ll give it a try, whether it’s at home or at a restaurant and we’d love to hear what you think of it! Bon appetit!