Japanese-ish Hot Pot

Japanese-ish Hot Pot

I say “Japanese-ish” because this is a mish-mash of things I have on hand.  No extra fancy ingredients that are hard to find.  Most of these ingredients are readily available in even the most “American” of grocery stores like mine.  It’s more the concept of a Japanese Hot Pot that I’m invoking here.  The same goes for you.  If you don’t have all the ingredients on hand, play around with other ingredients.  Daikon radishes are only available occasionally here, try regular radishes or leave them out.  No dried shitake mushrooms?  Use what you can find.  If they are fresh mushrooms, use chicken broth in place of the mushroom broth.  Use regular cabbage for napa cabbage.  Play around with it.  I don’t think I’ve ever made this dish the same way twice.

I whipped this together on a whim for lunch one day and it’s become a family favorite.  My most favorite meals usually use only one pot.  I like my food mixed together.  I’ve never been one to keep my food separated on my plate.  I mix it all together.  My kids don’t really get a choice so it’s never been an issue for them either. One pot equals less dishes for me.  Also, my reluctant veggie eaters are more likely to eat some veggies if they are all mixed in.  Even if they try to pick out the bits of green, it’s impossible to get it all.

For the grain-free folks out there, just leave out the rice noodles.  You can serve this atop spaghetti squash for extra yum.


Japanese-ish Hot Pot


  • 2 tbsp oil (lard, coconut oil)
  • 1 lb ground pork or turkey
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • Dried shitake mushrooms, 1 oz package
  • 1 quart boiling water
  • 1/2 cup tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 1/2 cup mirin (or sweet red wine)
  • 2 sheets kombu seaweed, cut into 1/2 inch strips
  • 2 carrots, peeled and julienned
  • 1/2 cup daikon radish, julienned
  • 2 cups napa cabbage, roughly chopped
  • 8 oz package bean thread rice noodles.


  1. Pour boiling water over the dried mushrooms. Cover and let soften for about 10 mins. Drain and reserve liquid. Slice mushrooms. Add soy sauce and mirin to mushroom broth.
  2. In a large saucepan (enamel covered cast iron dutch oven is the best but stainless steel works), melt lard. Saute onions until soft. Add ground pork and brown.
  3. Layer kombu, carrots, daikon radish, mushrooms and cabbage. Pour mushroom broth mixture over everything, cover and let cook for 10 mins.
  4. Add noodles, pushing them down into the liquid. Cover and let cook until noodles are soft, about 10 mins.

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