Many people would feel like eating Japanese Nabe (Hot Pot) when it’s getting colder.
Donabe casseroles are commonly used to cook Nabe. Donabe can bring out more flavor of the ingredients to enrich the taste of Nabe than metal pots. This is because Donabe conducts heat slowly to extract the flavor. Also, Donabe produces less air bubbles during cooking. This prevents the ingredients falling apart while boiling.
However, a brand-new Donabe cannot be used immediately. Donabe has a number of tiny invisible holes on its surface to absorb water. These holes should be clogged in advance not to let the water come in during cooking; otherwise, mold formation and smell transfer will occur. This procedure of clogging holes is called “Medome”.
Today we are going to tell you about how to perform Medome before using Donabe and how to store it.
How to Perform Medome
It’s simple. Pour the water to about 80%of Donabe and boil. Then turn the heat low and add water-mixed flour and mix well. The amount of flour will be adjusted depending on the size of Donabe (e.g. 6Go Donabe, 1/2 tbsp; 8Go Donabe, 2 tbsp; 10Go Donabe, 4 tbsp).
After mixing well, boil it over low heat for about 5 mins and turn the heat off. Then let it cool spontaneously.
When the water gets cool, take the water away and wash inside of Donabe well.
After finishing Medome, dry Donabe in a well-ventilated shade.
How to Store Donabe
Before storage, Donabe should be washed and dried thoroughly. Remaining water or stains may cause mold. Mold is the biggest enemy of Donabe. After each use, wash Donabe well and dry it in a shade, and store it in a non-humid place.
It is good to wrap Donabe with newspaper, which prevents mold formation. Each part – body, lid, inner lid (if applicable) should be wrapped separately.
To prevent mold formation and smell transfer, it should be avoided cooking food with rich or strong flavor in Donabe during the first few times of cooking. Also, avoid leaving food in Donabe for a long time.
Regarding washing, long-time soaking of Donabe in water may cause mold or breakage. You should be careful not to let Donabe absorb excessive water.