Fluffy Stuffed Shiitake Mushrooms Bring Back Memories

Fluffy stuffed shiitake mushrooms bring back memoriesNot all Japanese cuisine is the elegant fare you see at high-end restaurants.
Cooking expert Atsuko Matsumoto introduces a more approachable dish using shiitake mushrooms stuffed with a meat mixture. To make them fluffy, she adds mashed potatoes.

When deep-frying the meatballs, aim for a golden color to “make them appetizing,” she says.

The leftover meat mixture may be used to make meatballs. Toward the end of the cooking process, Matsumoto adds soy sauce to the broth after first adding sake and sugar. A short cooking time is said to retain the aroma of the soy sauce. The dish serves four.


12 small shiitake mushrooms

150 grams ground chicken

50 grams potato

Ingredient A (1 egg, 2 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp salt)

50 grams onion

2 tsp katakuriko starch

Oil for frying

1/6 (300 grams) Chinese cabbage

Soup (1 cup dashi broth, 3 Tbsp sake, 1 Tbsp sugar, little more than 1 Tbsp soy sauce)


Boil potatoes, peel and mash. Finely chop onion and mix with katakuriko starch.

Mix in raw egg. Add potato and Ingredient A to ground chicken, mixing well. Add onion and mix.

Cut off stems from shiitake mushrooms, sprinkle katakuriko (not listed above) inside mushroom caps. Stuff in meat mixture and tightly form ball in mushroom cap using small knife.

Deep fry in oil heated to 180 degrees until golden brown. Remove. (Even if core of meatballs is uncooked, simmering will finish the process.)

Chop hard part of Chinese cabbage leaf at an angle. Chop leaf part.

Heat bit of oil in pot, sauté Chinese cabbage briefly and sprinkle salt and pepper (not listed above). Add broth, sake and sugar and bring to a boil. Add soy sauce, shiitake meatballs and cook for 4 to 5 minutes with lid on. When cooked, add katakuriko mixed with water to add thickness to soup.

Estimated time: 40 minutes (25 minutes to prepare, 5 minutes to deep-fry, 10 minutes to finish)

Nutritional information (per serving): kilocalories, about 215; sodium content, 1.8 grams; fat content, 11.4 grams