|Hot Stew with Assorted Fish Cakes
4 to 6 servings
- 1 pound daikon,
peeled, halved lenthwise, then cut cross-wise into 1-inch thick half moons
- 3/4 pound small ptoatoes
- 1 konnyaku (taro or yam gelatin) cake
- 8 to 10 satsuma-age
- (fried fish cakes) the size of ping-pong balls
- 2 hanpen (simmered fish cakes),
quartered into triangular shapes
- 1 kamaaboku (steamed fish cake),
cut into 1/3-inch slices
- 7 cups kombu dashi
- 1/4 cup usukochi shoyu (light colored soy sauce)
- 1/4 cup shoyu (soy sauce)
- 1/4 cup mirin
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 4 hardboiled eggs, shelled
- Hot Japanese mustard paste
- hot plain rice
•• Put the daikon into a medium pot, and add water to cover the daikon by 2 inches. Place the pot over moderate heat, bring the water to a boil, and cook for 15 minutes. Drain the daikon and set it aside.
•• Put the potatoes into a medium pot, cover them with cold water, and cook them until they are done but still firm. Drain and cut them into halves.
•• Put the taro gelatin into a medium pot of boiling water, and boil the gellatin for 1 minite. Drain it and cut into eight triangels.
•• To remove the excess oil from the fried fish cakes, put them in a colander and rinse them with boiling water.
•• In a large stew pot, bring the kelp stock, usukuchi and shoyu, mirin, and sugar to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low, and add all the fish cakes and the par-boiled ingredients including the eggs.
•• Cook, partially covered for 3 hours. Add water as necessary to keep the broth from reducing to less than half of its original quantity. Taste the broth and add a little more shoyu, mirin, or sugar to your taste.
•• Bring the hot pot to the table. If possible, keep the stew hot on a portable stove. Let the diners help themselves, choosing the ingredients they prefer and transferring them to individual bowls along with some broth and mustard paste.