Don Abe: the Japanese clay hot-pot
In our weekends and sometimes when we are in the right mood, even late at night when the babe is asleep, me and my husband love to cook. So when we received this in our mailbox, i got very excited and curious: The donabe. The Japanese cuisine interest us very much, so this as well. I never heard of a donabe before, so time to get informed and to read about it- Vivian
A donabe is a round earthenware pot used in traditional Japanese cuisine. The word donabe literally means ‘clay hot-pot’. It’s quite simple to use – you don’t even have to be a pro Japanese chef. You can make all kinds of things in a donabe: ramen or tagines; a succulent coq au vin or fluffy white rice.
Japanese donabes have been used since the 8th century as a traditional way of preparing food at home. Elegant and unpretentious, donabes are the perfect one-pot wonder for busy families. Donabes are still made in the traditional manner in certain parts of Japan using century-old techniques. Their unique rough texture adds an extra layer of flavour to the food cooked inside. If your donabe is well-cared for, it can last for decades – or even centuries.
This longevity can even add some unique flavour. According to folk wisdom, your donabe stores a tiny bit of the flavours of all the meals you’ve cooked in it. This brings out the special ‘umami factor’, bringing extra richness and balance to the food, and reducing the need for salt and fat. There is some truth to this: the thick clay walls of the donabe store and release heat slowly, letting flavours suffuse a dish gently and thoroughly.
So, sounds like a perfect Christmas present, right? And besides of the cooking.. it will look beautiful in your kitchen :)
There is a whole range of different donabe’s available, you’ll find them here.