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Introduction to Teppanyaki




Photo (c) Setsuko Yoshizuka

Teppanyaki is a method of cooking. The name is derived from the words teppan meaning iron plate or pan in Japanese and yaki, which indicates grilling or barbecuing. The best part of teppanyaki is that cooking and eating can be done in the same place, making it a a fun possibility for a party. Using an electric pan or a propane-heated flat surface grill are two easy ways to enjoy teppanyaki at home.

The latter are often used in restaurants or for people cooking for guests. The teppanyaki grill's solid iron cooking surface is perfect for small and finely chopped ingredients like eggs, vegetables or even rice.

Any meat or vegetables you use in your teppanyaki should be cut into bite-sized pieces. You can then grill them on the pan or propane grill at the table with your guests seated around it. As the various ingredients are cooked, dip them in the dipping sauce and eat them. In this way, preparing and serving teppanyaki is an ongoing, almost circular process in which you're cooking and eating and cooking some more, all at the same time.

Bottled yakiniku sauce is available at most Asian grocery stores and works quite well as a dipping sauce when serving teppanyaki. You may also choose to marinate the meat in the sauce before cooking it on the grill.

Pre-steamed chukamen noodles for yakisoba and pre-boiled udon noodles are often cooked in teppanyaki.

Possible Ingredients

Teppanyaki typically includes cabbage, bean sprouts, shiitake mushrooms, onions, scallops, shrimp, beef loin, pork chops or ribs, sausages, carrots, potatoes, eggplant, corn, green bell peppers and yakisoba noodles.

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