Simmered Nagaimo (Japanese/Chinese Mountain Yam)
This simmered nagaimo recipe is super crisp and fresh. It is a wonderfully quick and light side dish that only requires three ingredients!
As the title suggests, this nagaimo recipe calls for a special ingredient. Nagaimo, also referred to as Chinese yam or mountain yam, is a unique tuber common in Japanese and Chinese cuisines. It initially has a crisp and light texture that turns slimy when grated. The Japanese love to use this ingredient, as they enjoy foods with gooey textures such as natto (fermented soybeans) and okra. You can learn more about this fascinating ingredient here. This simmered nagaimo recipe is super simple and takes less than 15 minutes to make. It works wonderfully as a healthy side dish.
How to Make This Simmered Nagaimo Recipe
Prepare the Root
To begin, wash and peel the outer skin of the nagaimo. The exterior can cause irritations. So, if you have sensitive skin, I would recommend using gloves to handle the root. Also, be careful when preparing the nagaimo, as it will continue to get slimier as you peel and slice it. After peeling, cut the yam into half-inch-thick rounds.
Cook the Nagaimo
Place a nonstick pan over medium heat and add a little bit of oil. Add the nagaimo slices into the pan. Let the yam cook until it is nicely golden brown on the bottom, around 3 minutes. Flip the yam over and cook for three more minutes to let the other side develop a nice golden brown crust as well. You can let the yam pan-fry longer if you would like a more charred flavor.
Add the soy sauce, mirin, and two tablespoons of water to the pan. The sauce should immediately begin to bubble. Quickly swirl the pan to distribute the sauce evenly. Cover the pan and let the yam cook for 2 minutes. Then, flip the yam slices over and add two more tablespoons of water. Cover the pan and let the yam cook for an additional two minutes.
Remove the simmered yam and serve.
- 5 inches nagaimo
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp mirin
- 4 tbsp water
- Wash, peel, and cut the nagaimo into 1/2 inch round slices. Note that the nagaimo will get very slimy.
- Heat some oil in a nonstick pan over medium heat.
- Add the nagaimo and pan fry for a few minutes until the bottom side is nicely golden brown. Flip the slices over and brown the other side.
- Add the soy sauce, mirin, and two tablespoons of water into the pan. It should start bubbling away rapidly. Swirl the pan to make sure that all of the nagaimo slices are covered in the sauce.
- Let the sauce bubble away for about 2 minutes or until the pan is almost dry. Flip the slices over and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of water. Swirl the pan again to make the the other side of the nagaimo slices are flavored with the sauce.
- Continue cooking for about 2 minutes, or until all of the water has evaporated. Remove from the pan and serve.