My daughter Helen, her boyfriend Will, his son Atticus, and my granddaughter, Grace were in town a few days ago and we had a dinner together to celebrate my birthday.  One of my gifts was the Uchi cookbook.  Uchi is a very famous restaurant owned by Tyson Cole, an award winning chef, in Austin.  A second location opened recently in Houston.  Helen and Will went to the Austin location for Helen’s birthday in May and told me all about it.  I had heard of it but never eaten there.  I am very anxious to try it now, especially after reading the cookbook from cover to cover.  What interesting dishes he has created.  One of the dishes that caught my eye cas called, “Kona Kanpachi” or on his restaurant menu, “Hamachi Nabe”.  I had a feeling this would be a really great dish so I just had to make it.  I didn’t have a small nabe (clay donabe pot) so I ordered an authentic one on line.  It is a beautiful brown clay pot from Japan, about 7 inches in diameter.

The dish consists of sushi rice cooked in a hot donabe, marinated fresh kanpachi (yellowtail) added to the hot donabe topped with an egg yolk, furikake, scallion, and a special sauce.
I don’t usually get that excited about food (well I really do, but not THAT excited), but this was out of this world good.  Steve went crazy over it too.  I modified the recipe a bit so mine is not exactly the same as the one in the cookbook.  It is worth anything you have to do to make it, including purchasing a $54.00 authentic donabe pot from Japan.  Take my word for it.

Kanpachi Nabe
Adapted from Uchi Cookbook, Tyson Cole
1 serving

1 T vegetable oil
2 ounces kanpachi, diced
salt and pepper
1 cup cooked sushi rice

5 ounces sake
7 ounces mirin
5 ounces reduced sodium soy sauce
1 tsp dashi
2 garlic cloves, smashed

Sesame Relish
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large shallot, minced
1 small Thai chile
1 tsp sesame oil
2 T vegetable oil

1 egg yolk
Bonito flakes
3/4 stalk scallion, diced

For the sauce:  Heat sake in a medium saucepan and burn off alcohol, about 2 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Combine remaining ingredients and simmer for 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and let steep for 15 minutes. (You will have extra sauce so you can make 3 or 4 servings or use the sauce for other dishes.)

For the sesame relish:  Finely dice (brunoise) the garlic and shallot, and thinly slice the Thai chile in rounds.  Mix the vegetables with the oils.  Set aside

Heat a nabe, or Japanese hot pot, on the stove with a little bit of oil.  Toss diced kanpachi with the sesame relish and season with salt and pepper.  Just before the oil reaches its smoking point, add the rice.  Next add the kanpachi.  Top with the egg yolk and sprinkle of furikake, bonito flakes, and finely sliced scallion. The hot ingredients will partially cook the fish and it will be ready immediately.  Pour 2 tablespoons kanpachi sauce on top (or more to taste).  Serve in hot pot at the table on an insulated place mat.

(I used Hon-dashi, a dried dashi powder similar to bouillon.  Furikake is a Japanese seaweed seasoning.  Both Hon-dashi and Furikake are sold in Asian stores and Central Market in Texas.)
5 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Great post! I love this dish at Uchi and was delighted to find a recent post on how to make this at home. I followed your recipe and it came out very tasty and authentic to the bowl at Uchi. You mentioned that you modified the recipe, can you provide what changes you made? Thanks!


  2. Julia Dunaway
    Julia Dunaway says:

    Hi Ryan,

    Thanks for your comment. I'm traveling so I don't have the cookbook here with me but I recall the main changes. The original recipe in the Uchi cookbook called for an ounce of dashi powder! That was a huge amount and would have made the sauce way too fishy. I reduced it to a teaspoon. I also cut the sesame oil in the relish down because I find large amounts of sesame oil to be overpowering.

    I used reduced sodium soy sauce in the sauce and it was just fine, but I forgot to write that on my recipe. I always substitute regular soy sauce for low sodium in my recipes. I had a lot of leftover sauce and put in it the freezer to use next time I make it, which will be as soon as possible! I modified the amount of oil used to saute the rice because I try to use as little fat as possible in my cooking. I used a Serrano chile pepper I picked right out of my garden instead of aThai chile pepper, and I was out of scallions so I used finely minced red onions.

    When I get home I will check the original recipe again and see if there were any other changes. I'm glad yours turned out good. I don't believe his cookbook recipe is written very accurately.

  3. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    I'm going to make this again tonight. The only changes I'm going to make from the previous time is to get the bowls hotter and let the rice get more crispy!


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