しゃぶしゃぶ: shabu shabu, a style of hotpot dish. The name comes from the sound the ingredients make swishing in the pot.
In Okinawa, there are a few places to try shabu shabu dining. This weekend, we found an amazing place up north. Yanbaru Dining Churashima Kitchen (YANBARU DINING 美ら島キッチン) in Motobu. It is mixed in with the Nago Agri Park, located behind the NeoPark Okinawa. It is in the back corner of the lot, and you will walk by some small stores and cafes to get there.
During lunch, prices are reasonable (1580yen per person): it comes with 100g of meat (Okinawa agu pork and chicken, which I just gave to my husband) and all you can eat veggies, rice, side dishes, soft drinks, etc. This place was great because it featured all Yanbaru produce and greens… there was so much fresh variety. You just grab a tray and fill up bowls with the veggies you want for cooking and they will bring out the broth and the meat (they also have some “specialty veggies” which they will bring out in separate bowls, so if they ask you any questions, just say YES = HAI!). Get some rice, dipping sauces, some side dishes, a salad… then get to work cooking and eating. Once your pot is boiling add veggies or meat as you like– the leafy veggies will cook very quickly, the thicker veggies and meat will take longer. Just use you hashi (chopsticks) to add and fish out the pieces you like. Dip in the sauce of your choice and it is ready to eat.
The menu is in Japanese, so you can order extra meat, but I am not sure you would need it. The workers also only spoke Japanese from my interactions with them, which again, should be fine since it is not so complicated. Just remember the large bar of veggies is for cooking, and the smaller table is for salad use (it says サラダ用 on it). There were many amazing Okinawa veggies, like handama, sakuna, fuchiba, and more.
Everything was delicious and we were quite full leaving. I didn’t get any pictures of the meat or cooking, I was too busy eating…