Cook like a Clerkenwell Chef-Sukiyaki

Sosharu, Jason Atherton’s izakaya-style restaurant on Turnmill Street, is proving a big hit with critics and punters alike. Executive Head Chef Alex Craciun shares the secrets to making one of his favourite dishes on the menu, sukiyaki, a traditional Japanese hot pot…



Serves 2


70g beef loin
50g white onion
50g glass noodles
50g spring onion, sliced in half
50g leek, sliced in half
50 shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, any large mushrooms halved
50g silken tofu, cut into 3cm cubes
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1 sprig of thyme
Beef fat or vegetable oil


100ml dashi (or chicken/beef stock if you can’t find dashi stock)
40ml light soy sauce
40ml mirin
40ml sake
10g demerara sugar


Alex says: “Sukiyaki is cooked at the table in the restaurant, which makes it a real showstopper, but you can also cook it on the hob at home, then serve in the pot at the table for guests to dig into. For this dish, every ingredient is arranged individually within the hotpot so it’s really important you source high quality ingredients so each element tastes great. We use wagyu in the restaurant but if you can’t get hold of it, great quality British beef is perfect – try a tenderloin cut.”

Leave the beef in the freezer for an hour to ensure it’s cold – this makes it easier to cut. Slice the beef as thinly as possible, around 3mm thickness, and then roll it lengthways. Set aside.

To make the base, scrape a dough ball out of its container using as much flour as you need to ensure it doesn’t stick. Put the dough ball onto a floured surface. Using your fingertips, press out the dough ball firmly, starting at the centre and working out to the edge. Ensure you leave a centimetre around the rim of the pizza untouched. Turn the dough ball over and repeat on the other side.

Peel and cut the onion in half, and then open with your hand into petals. Slice the petals into 1cm strips. Heat the beef fat or vegetable oil in a pan and gently sweat the onion strips with a little salt for around 3-4 minutes, until they have softened. Repeat the process with the spring onion and leek. In another pan, roast the shiitake mushrooms in a little oil with the crushed garlic clove and thyme.

To make the sukiyaki sauce, mix all the ingredients in a pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, and then remove from the heat.

Now you need a large cast iron or non-stick frying pan. Heat 1 tbsp of vegetable oil in the pan and sear the beef rolls, adding a little of the sukiyaki sauce. Once seared, push the beef to the side of the pan and add the onion, leek, spring onion, noodles and tofu, along with the rest of the sukiyaki sauce, put on the lid and bring to a simmer. Cook for around 4-5 minutes until everything is cooked through, and serve in the pan at the table to share.

Sosharu’s new lunch deal is inspired by bento boxes. Choose either fried chicken karaage, salmon teriyaki or broccoli tempura, served with a rice or noodle side dish, kimchi pickles and a seasonal vegetable salad with yuzukosho dressing. Ice cream or sorbet is included. Priced £16.50 to £19.