So if you’ve ever been to Benihana or Sakura you know how it all goes down. You walk in, get seated at a long table next to some strangers, a happy chef comes out with the hopes of entertaining you. There’s the big ball of fire, the onion volcano that somehow turns into a choo choo train then the next thing you know, your trying to catch tiny pieces of shrimp with your mouth.
If you’re very confused at this point then you must have never been to a Hibachi restaurant and thus live under a rock. But it’s okay, once you’ve been to one, you’ve been to them all, but you can never deny how delicious that meal was and how you wish you had the talent and skill to make something so damn good and have fun at the same time. My hat goes off to these chefs, they are truly amazing. But at the end of the night when you realized you spent $35.99 and forgot to save enough for leftovers, you feel butt-hurt and start running the numbers in your head to see when you can afford to come back.
I’m here to tell you that you can literally replicate that entire meal in your own kitchen. Well, at least the rice anyway. One of the best, if not the best part of the Hibachi experience is that goddam rice! It just would not be the same without it. When Devin and I go to Sakura he always gets double rice. Then I look at him like he has two heads when he ends up devouring his entire plate. But I think I’ve discovered the secret to what makes this rice so delicious, and that’s Yum Yum sauce.
What’s Yum Yum sauce, you ask? Well it’s that mayo-y, ketchup-y Asian-y sauce that they serve on the side of your meal. Maybe you’ve tried it, maybe not, but I am telling you, your life will change once you drizzle some of that sauce over your fried rice. It. Is. Heaven!
So, since we’re not including the protein in this recipe, let’s talk veggies! I’m going to put this simply. Name any vegetable you like to eat. Broccoli? Asparagus? Cauliflower? Zucchini? Use it dammit! You don’t have to use the veggies in the recipe at all. Honestly, every time I make this I use different veggies, depending on what I have in my house and the Hibachi chefs do the same! Have you ever noticed that one time you had zucchini but the last time you had broccoli? They use what they have and you like it anyway, so feel free to do the same thing. I would say you can use none at all but then you would feel guilty for eating all that Yum Yum with no veggies to make you feel better about it and then blame me for it. Thanks, but no thanks!
Anyway, let me know what veg combination you tried and how it came out! I love to try them myself!
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 8oz sliced mushrooms
- 3/4 cup thinly sliced carrots
- 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 2 tbsp yum yum sauce
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 cup cook white or brown rice