Hibachi: The Japanese Art of Grilling

Although worldwide we’ve come to know Japanese cuisine for its raw specialities, like sushi, which is usually the first thing that comes to mind when someone thinks of Japanese foods, this country has plenty more options of dishes full of tastes and ingredients to offer. Take the BBQ as an example—a unique way to experience savoury meats and treat your palate to an unforgettable taste.

Despite appearances, the nation of the Land of the Rising Sun has a vibrant barbeque scene that we’re sure any carnivore would be more than pleased to get to know more about. If you share a love for history as much as grilling and meat eating, you are probably aware of the fact that this island-locked nation wasn’t always into meat, to begin with, due to the basic teachings of Buddhism. The predominant fish cuisine underwent a complete transformation with the shocking move by emperor Meiji in 1872: eating meat (a piece of beef) in public.

He was also the first to open up to outside influences, including Korean culture, which would explain the trend of yakiniku, a grilling technique of Korean origin that later made it big in Japan. From then on, the country began its grilling tradition, combining the art of cooking foods on traditional high-heat irons with lots of creativity and mastery. Enter the hibachi Japanese barbeques, which are as stylish as they are functional.

What Is Hibachi?

It’s a Japanese grilling method that consists of cooking foods (e.g., vegetables, seafood, rice, and even desserts besides meat) over wood or charcoal instead of open flames. The result is a signature binchotan (charcoal) smoky flavour plus a mixture of spices and sauces. The reason why this particular charcoal is the chosen one has to do with its burning rate, which allows more control over the heat and produces savoury meals.

Simply put, the outcome is a true feast for the senses; a bonus is getting to hear the food give out sizzling sounds throughout the cooking. Small, portable, and convenient for grill prep at home or even on the go, it’s no surprise why these Japanese barbeques have gathered so much attention in many cuisines around the world in recent years, and Australia is no exception. You can easily find your ideal model of hibachi grill in retailers around you.

Although these grills used to be made from cypress trees and a layer of clay due to the shortage of metal, nowadays you can find them in sturdy metal designs. Among the more affordable options for these BBQs is cast aluminium, but if you want to treat yourself to a truly valuable purchase that will serve you for years to come, cast iron is the way to go. For the best value for money, look for a Japanese hibachi grill with thicker walls to keep the outside cooler longer.

Some of the latest designs can even be found in gas-powered versions, which further facilitates the grilling experience for you. Who knows, maybe you’d even hone your teppanyaki chef skills by doing all the effortless and expert work with the Japanese knives and ingredient flips. This could easily turn you into a serious entertainer who would treat guests to their cooking show right at the table!

What Is So Good About Hibachi Grill?

At first glance, it’s obvious that its compactness has something to do with its rise in popularity around the globe. But that’s not all this type of grill has to offer. In addition to being able to take it along wherever your adventures take you (could be your backyard or a campsite) and having tasty food virtually anywhere, this grill provides you with the chance to enhance your cooking skills by trying out a range of techniques.

Not only will you be able to enjoy cooking on a flat griddle, which is better known as teppanyaki-style, but you’ll also have the opportunity to experiment with yakitori, which is cooking on skewers, cutting up thin and small slices of meat. Kebab and hamburger fans can also rejoice in this!

This opens up a vast world of trying out new recipes and getting creative with the ingredients as much as the flavours. You won’t know a chef is hiding in you until you’ve owned one of these Japanese barbeques.

Versatility is also in the size and form of the grill itself, so you get to decide how big and impactful a design you want for your outdoor space. Consider the capacity and how much meat/ingredients you plan to prep at the same time based on how many people you intend to serve. There are adjustable rack designs available as well, which are handy for cooking meals evenly.

Whichever you choose, you can bet on the guaranteed aesthetics of the models since Japanese designs offer an abundance of style and sleekness along with practicality. Think of this type of grill as a cute box you get to play with every time you feel like eating some juicy meats and meals.

The attention to detail goes all the way to the smallest of elements, so you can count on intricate beauty even with the handles and the vent system. Who would’ve thought there was a way to get the whole package?! Getting one of these models is a great solution when you want to add some charm and style to the outdoor entertaining area while boosting functionality.

Moreover, since this grill allows you to cook meals on high heat, you get to create signature crispy textures that are both tasty and things to behold. The excellent cooking results are accompanied by speed too, since the grill isn’t big and doesn’t need much time to heat up, which further adds to the charm. Thanks to the smaller size and simpler design, there’s also less cleaning required.

Lastly, on the plus side, it’s an energy-efficient source both with charcoal and gas alternatives, so it could save you on energy costs at least when it comes to cooking. While easy to use, to get all the aforementioned benefits, never leave the hot grill unsupervised, and always keep a fire extinguisher at hand to have peace of mind.

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