Thursday, 19 April 2007

Lazy Yakiniku-style Lamb - 焼肉ラム

Call it yakiniku, Korean barbecue, Mongolian barbecue, jingisukan or whatever, it's fun to grill your own meat at the table.

From the pricey and upmarket to the casual chains, the typical set-up looks something like this... (excuse the blurry cell phone pic)

new year's eve yakinuku

... with a hotplate built into the middle of the table. You order plates of raw meat, seafood and vegetables, then cook and eat them at your own pace.

Sometimes the meat comes in a marinade, and sometimes you grill it plain and dunk it into a dipping sauce (tare) just before you eat it. (Various internet discussions point to the first method as more Korean, and the second as a Japanese invention, but most places in Japan do both.)

I don't have a charcoal grill or hotplate at home, but the cheap lamb I picked up at the supermarket the other day was cut for yakiniku and I didn't have any better ideas, so I put together something similar to this recipe and just browned the meat in a hot frypan.

The garlicky sesame marinade reminds me of good times out at yakinuku, but turning the meat at the stove wasn't quite as fun as drinking beers at the table with your friends. Next time I'm planning on getting together with someone who has a grill and trying out a few different seasonings, including these dipping sauce mixes (scroll down).

Yakiniku-style Lamb

Recipe: Yakiniku-style Marinade
Serves 2 with rice and side dishes.

200grams lamb or beef, sliced thin into mouth-sized pieces
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp soy sauce
  • Place ingredients in a bowl or plastic freezer bag and combine thouroughly.
  • Refridgerate for an hour or two. Overnight would be fine.
  • Spread out (cook in batches if necessary) over a hot grill or frypan, turning once.
  • Serve as is or with a splash of chili oil. Eat Immediatly.
Fun Facts - Did you know that August 29th is the official "Yakiniku day" (yakiniku no hi)? I didn't either. See Wikipedia's entry on yakiniku for more.


K & S said...

just curious if you knew that jingiskan stands for Genghis Khan? I was surprised when I found this out. Your lazy yakiniku looks great, I wish I could find lamb around here.

Cass said...

I'd heard that before, but didn't really understand why until I did a quick google search just then: Japan's mongolian style BBQ is "named after a well known Mongolian butcher". So random.

My supermarket always has lamb on sale, because no one else buys it. My friends have said most Japanese people don't like the smell. I'm both happy and fearful they will give up and stop stocking it.

K & S said...

wow! I wish my supermarket would bring it in. maybe I should look at the more upscale ones for it. I really want to try Blue Lotus' lamb chops recipe.