Yasai Itame (野菜炒め)

I believe yasai itame is one of the most ignored dishes in Japanese restaurants. Especially in Malaysia. One of the main reasons is that we Malaysians are spoiled with a lot of local restaurants that make very decent stir-fried vegetable dishes. So when we want some stir fried, Japanese cuisines will not be the first thing that pops up in our mind. Albeit it is on the menu of most Japanese restaurants, sushi or ramen are the most commonly associated with Japanese cuisine for us Malaysians.

My wife and I love yasai itame a lot. Occasionally when we do not feel like having sushi in our favourite Japanese restaurant (mostly when it is at noon), we will order a yasai itame set and one a hokke hiraki (Japanese salted fish) set, and share among ourselves.

What is yasai itame

Yasai (野菜) is Japanese for vegetables and itame (炒め) means stir-fry. Yasai itame is basically a simple plate of stir-fried vegetables. It normally consists of a few different colours of vegetables for better nutrients. Carrot, bean sprout, bell pepper, and cabbages are some of the basic vegetables you normally find in it. Some restaurants will use a different vegetable with the likes of snow peas, but cabbage is certainly a must.

How does it tastes

My wife and I love it! Well, to elaborate further, it tastes slightly lighter compared to our stir-fried vegetables. A decent Malaysian Chinese stir-fried vegetable will normally consist of pork lard, garlic, and oyster sauce as the base. It is super fragrant but can be very oily. As for yasai itame, there is no pork lard in it. Pork sliced (or beef sliced if you don’t do pork) is being used instead. That is why it is lighter in taste.

Is it hard to make one at home and how

No, yasai itame is a very simple dish to make at home. If stir-frying is nothing new for you, you will find yasai itame to be like a walk in the park. If you are new to cooking, it might take some effort but still, it is not rocket science. You can use a non-stick pan if you want.

Well~ I guess that’s about it. If you have yet to try yasai itame, we think you should give it a go next time. Order it at your favourite Japanese restaurant, make it yourself, or whatever. Just try it. Sometimes a decent stir-fried vegetable pairing with a bowl of rice is all you need for a fulfilling meal. At least, that is what I think. I am a simple human being after all~

Yasai Itame (野菜炒め)

Joew
Japanese style stir-fried mixed vegetables
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 2 person

Equipment

  • Wok (or non-stick pan)

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Garlic (minced)
  • 1/2 inch Ginger (minced)
  • 100 g Sliced pork belly (or beef if you don’t do pork)
  • 200 g Cabbage (cut roughly an inch piece)
  • 100 g Bean sprout
  • 1/2 Carrot (thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 Onion (cut into strips)
  • 1/2 Green pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 tbsp Cooking oil

Seasoning

  • 1 tsp Soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp Starch (dilute with a bit of water)
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions
 

Preparation

  • Prepare the vegetables, cut them accordingly. Mix soy sauce, oyster sauce, a bit of water, and 1 tsp of starch in a small bowl. Mix them well.

Stir fry

  • Now,time for stir fry! Heat a tablespoon of cooking oil in a wok on medium high heat. Fry the minced garlic and ginger until fragrant.
  • Add sliced pork and onion in. Stir fry until the pork is no longer pink.
  • Add cabbage, carrot, and green pepper in. Stir fry for about a few minutes, or until the vegetable is almost cooked.
  • Add the bean sprout in. Continue stir fry on medium high heat for about half a minute.
  • Season it with salt and pepper. Then pour the mixture of soy sauce, oyster sauce, and starch in. Stir fry it a little to mix it well and we are done. Serve and enjoy~
Keyword stir fried mixec vegetable, yasai itame, 野菜炒め

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