Taiken Japan

Autumn Leaves 2016

The Nutritious Value of Chankonabe

Photo: Leon Brocard on Flickr

The Nutritious Value of Chankonabe

Sanny Soedjatmiko Hartanto

Sumo wrestling. Well, we may be very familiar with this famous sport originating from Japan. Yes, when we hear the word “sumo”, we directly think about two big Japanese guys wrestling and trying to throw each others bodies with their feet stomping hard on the floor. But it is not the sport we are talking about now, it is about the high calorie fuel behind every sumo wrestler: chankonabe. It is such an incredibly delicious pot of hot stew filled with many nutritional ingredients. So, let’s know more about this incredible dish for the wrestlers in Japan.


Lara604 on Flickr

Chankonabe (ちゃんこ鍋) is a Japanese food that is mostly used in sumo wrestlers’ diets. It is actually a pot of stew cooked together with a lot of meat, chicken, seafood, and so many various kinds of vegetables. It is very high in nutrients such as protein, fat and vitamins. That is why it supports a good diet for athletes. It provides a lot of energy, is easy to prepare, and can be enjoyed by a lot of athletes at the same time as it is served in a big pot. For these wrestlers have to eat a lot of food and get stuffed.  As you can tell, these guys do need a big meal to sustain them and if the chankonabe runs out, the chef easily adds more ingredients to their broth in case all the wrestlers have inhaled all of it.


David Wiley on Flickr

Feeling curious? Stay tune for more information about how to serve it!



Lara604 on Flickr

Chankonabe is easy to prepare and can be done at home. All you need is a big pot. What you have to do first is to prepare broth or maybe chicken broth, and cook them with soy sauce, sake, and mirin. Then, gently mix them together and when it is boiled, put cabbage, carrot and others hard vegetables in so they can be cooked and get softened at medium heat. After that, put meat like pork, chicken, or meatballs into the pot and cook them for around 10 minutes. Lower the heat and put the rest of the ingredients like salt, pepper and tofu in. Voila! You will have your own delicious chankonabe. You can eat it together with rice as sumo wrestlers do or just enjoy the hot stew itself in any time of the year.



JeffRz on Flickr

As I described before, chankonabe is made for a sumo wrestlers’ diet. So, this must be a stew that is over-loaded with calories right? Well, yes; for every 24 cm diameter of one chankonabe pot, it has around 535 kcal. But, among the good things from eating this sumo stew are: 1) It is low in saturated fat; 2) It is also high in niacin and pantothenic acid; and 3) You can get a good amount of vitamin B6 and vitamin C from eating this.


Leon Brocard on Flickr

So, what are you waiting for? Make this incredible stew by yourself at your home and enjoy it together with your family or friends as a party meal or something. What a great thing to have a delicacy and nutritious hot stew during the season. Any time of the year is great to eat it especially in winter! Bon Appetite! Or in Japanese, Itadakimasu!