What Japanese Dinner is Like part 2 ★How to prep a meal in 30 mins. (EP131)

Posted on Posted in Fish, Japanese traditional recipes

Today, I want to share with you What Japanese Dinner is like, part 2!

Thank you for so many positive comments on the former video!

I didn’t realize that you want to watch complete daily dinner preparation.

The dishes I introduce you today is so simple, but you will never get tired of. Today’s main course is grilled mackerel as some of you requested.

One more thing I want to tell you is, I used sugar instead of mirin in this video. One of the most frequently asked questions is “what can be a substitution for mirin?” I hope the tutorial is helpful for you guys can’t access to the mirin.


Today I use an eggplant which is non-native kind of eggplant. I believe you can find it easier than the Japanese eggplant. The flesh becomes tender as to melt in your mouth when it cooked slowly.


Cooking is multi-tasking, so I always use a timer on Google home mini. Everything should be cooked exactly as it needed.

I will burn everything without her.;0


You can use the seasonal vegetable “Nibitashi”, like carrot chard or even onion.

In the video, I used a vegetable called “zuiki.” Which is the stem of taro, it can be eaten very very limited of time. The texture is slipperly and fibrous, but soft. So unique vegetable.


Grilled mackerel for main course, eggplant steak and Nibitashi for side dishes.

I served Onsen Tamago, which I have prepared a couple of days ago, as a side dish. Soup is clear soup because I used Miso for the Eggplant.

Give it a try and let me know how you like it!


Japanese Dinner

Typical Japanese Dinner
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: asazuke, pickles, japanese pickles, tsukemono,, Jananese food, Japanese cuisine, japanese dinner, japanese everyday food, kitchen princess bamboo
Servings: 4
Cost: $15


  • pot, frying pan, griller


Grilled mackerel

  • 4 fillets salted mackerel

Eggplant steak Garlic and Miso sauce

  • 1

    large eggplant (Black beauty) 

  • One clove garlic

  • Two tablespoons sesame oil

  • 2/3 tablespoon sugar or 2 tablespoons mirin

  • 1 tablespoon dark miso ※any kind is OK

  • 1/3 cup water

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • Mitsuba Leaves ※optional

・Simmered vegetables "Nibitashi"

  • 3~4 leaves cabbage

  • 1 aburaage 

  • 1/4 cup bonito flakes

  • 1/2 cup water

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce ※or 1 tablespoon mirin


Eggplant garlic steak

  • Cut into an-inch slices. Score the criss-cross pattern 5mm intervals.
    Soak in water to prevent from turning brown.

    Slice your garlic thinly with a mandolin.

    Be careful not to cut your fingers. 

    Heat your frying pan on medium. Add in 2 tablespoons sesame oil.
    Add in sliced garlic while the oil still warm. Cook for a while until fragrant. Pat dry your eggplant and put into the frying pan.

    Turn the heat to low, cook about a couple of minutes with the lid on. Flip them over and cook for another 5 to 6 minutes or until soft.
    Add all the seasonings to the pan, and dissolve the miso. Reduce the sauce until it looks good. Spoon the sauce over eggplant while cooking to evenly season.

    Transfer to a dish and sprinkle chopped Mitsuba.

Grilled mackerel

  • While cooking the eggplant, grill the mackerel fillet in the griller or panfry until the outside is browned and inside is just cooked through. Do not over cooked. Otherwise, it gets dry.

"Nibitashi" Quick simmered vegetable

  • Cut your cabbage into bite-size rectangles against the grains. Slice cores thinly.

    This is Aburaage, deep-fried Tofu.

    Pour boiling water over it, to remove the excess oil and to make it absorb the dashi. 

    Cut into strips.

    Put the ingredients and water into a pot, turn the heat to medium and bring it to a boil. 

    Add in sugar and soy sauce.

    Place a kitchen towel over it, add in bonito flakes. The idea behind this method is to steep the Umami directly to the ingredients. Put the lid on and cook for 5 mins. 
    I left the bonito flakes in the former video. Because I think the Shishito pepper goes well with bonito flakes in terms of texture. In this case, the bonito flakes are not necessarily in the dish. 

    Squeeze out the umami from the bonito flakes, and it's done!


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