Japanese Inspired Root Vegetable Stew

5 Sep

Finally a Japanese inspired dish. With my father’s recent health condition, my whole family have been forced to look for different low carb and low fat meals. After weeks of boiled broccoli, I have finally had it. While I was flipping though the cookbooks for some inspiration, I came across a recipe for a daikon and chicken stew. Instead of chicken, I made a substitution with fish cakes and then added a few extra variety of root vegetables. The meal was quick and easy. If you can chop things roughly then boil them, then you can make this dish. Instead of just daikon, I also added various roots like lotus root, carrot, and burdock root. Burdock rood has a very earthy flavor that gives the soup a over all rustic flavor and is believe to have some medicinal qualities.  The square brown things you see in the picture are yam cakes (Konnyaku). These yam cakes have only five calories per 2oz serving, zero fat, zero cholesterol, zero sodium, zero sugar, and a gram of fiber. For those on a diet, you can call this a super diet food with its near zero nutritional value. These cakes have a texture of very firm gelatin or like firm agar. It has no flavor of its own, but will take on the flavor of the broth it is boiled it. Did i mention that they are really filling? Well they are, and that make them good for those on a diet. This is good one it own, or you can eat it with rice.

Japanese Root Stew

4 C of water

1 Tbs of dashi (powdered fish stock)

3 Tbs of miso paste (any kind)

1 small (8″ long) daikon cut into 1 inch pieces

2 segments of lotus root (8 inches long) cut 1/2 inch segments

2 carrots cut into 1 inch pieces

1 burdock root (1 1/2 feet) peeled and cut into 1 inch segments

1 dozen dried shitake mushrooms rehydrated and cut in half

1 bag of fish cakes (substitute with chicken or beef if desired)

3 stalks of scallions cut into 1 inch segments

optional soy sauce

1. Rehydrate the shitake mushrooms over night in some water. Trim the stems and cut mushrooms in half. If you do not have access to dried shitake mushrooms, any type of fresh mushroom will do.

2. Peel all your root vegetables (daikon, lotus, burdock, and carrot) and cut up as listed.

3. In a large pot add 4 cups of water, the cut root vegetables, dashi, and miso paste.

4. Bring to a boil and reduce to medium heat for about 20 minuets uncovered or until vegetables are soft. Add your fish cakes (or chicken or beef) and let simmer for 5-8 minutes. If you are using stewing beef, add them in earlier with the vegetables.

5. Add in the scallions and cover for 2 minutes. If you need more flavor add soy sauce to taste.

You can easily turn this dish vegetarian but taking out the fish cakes and using a vegetable stock instead of dashi.

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One Response to “Japanese Inspired Root Vegetable Stew”

  1. Julie (A Case of the Runs) September 5, 2011 at 6:00 pm #

    This is something I’ve ordered out before… so yummy, and I love lotus root.

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