Taiwanese lamb hotpot is incredibly popular due to its savoury flavour. This dish is a specialty of Memory Corner. Though it takes time to make lamb hotpot, the wait is worth it. It consists of lamb chunks and different vegetables that are braised in a rich gravy and topped with sliced potatoes. It is cooked with thyme, bay leaves, a variety of oils, and toppings. Lamb hotpot made with all these flavorful ingredients results in a delicious and heartwarming dish.
If you love lamb meat, then there is no better choice than a lamb hotpot. With crispy seasoned potatoes and tender lamb pieces, this dish is just divine. In Taiwan, winter is considered to be “hotpot season” because cold months are the best time to enjoy this warm and savoury comfort food.
The Origin of Hotpot
It is believed that Hotpot originated during the Jin dynasty over 1,000 years ago. The dining practices of Mongolians also reflect the origin of hotpot. History tells that Mongolian horse riders used their helmets as pots on long journeys to northern China. Helmets were placed over open fires to cook the broth and meat chunks. Credit for introducing lamb meat as a common ingredient of the dish also goes to Mongolians.
Within Chinese and Taiwanese cultures, roundness (the circle) depicts unity, reunion, and reconnection. When hotpot is served, the platter of broth is round. The table you’re seated at is also often round and even if it’s square, you sit with your friends and family around it. Taiwanese hotpot is very popular in Korea, Japan, and China because it brings people and families together.
One thing that makes modern-day Taiwanese hotpot unique from other countries is the dipping sauce. Shacha sauce and egg yolk (raw) are used to make the dipping sauce.
Why is Hotpot Preferred in Taiwan?
No doubt, Taiwanese cuisines are a blend of Asian cultures. The Taiwanese, however, created their own standard in hotpot dishes that have been successful in attracting visitors around the globe.
Memory Corner – Traditional Lamb Cuisine:
One of the specialties of Memory Corner is its traditional lamb cuisine. This culinary tradition was adopted by Yu – Hsuang, the grandparents of Memory Corner’s current owner Raymond.
Yu-Liu put a great effort into practicing and learning specialized lamb recipes from a master chef. Later, he refined the cuisine by refining and combining different lamb recipes. He added many ingredients to find wonderful results.
The zesty smell and taste of the cuisine soon enhanced the taste of the people. The finger-licking dish found its way to the people’s hearts as there was no compromise on the quality of lamb cuisine.
Family lamb recipes such as Lamb Hotpot have been passed down for generations and are served at Memory Corner today. Visit the restaurant to give it a try—or make a version at home!
Ingredients (choice of your own produce):
- Cubed lamb chunks (1/2 kg)
- 2 large carrots (diced)
- 2 large potatoes ( peeled and sliced horizontally)
- 2 sliced onions
- Chinese cabbage
- 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 500 ml lamb stock
- 1 tbsp of Worcester sauce
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- Grated cheese
- Half Tablespoon of Memory Corner’s Secret ingredient (crushed)
- 30 g unsalted and melted butter
- Salt and pepper.
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
- Put butter in a pan and set it to medium heat. When butter is melted, add potato slices, 1 tsp salt, and sprinkle a pinch of pepper. Mix well and set it aside
- In a separate bowl, make a mixture of flour, salt, pepper, and chopped thyme. By using your hands, mix the lamb pieces with the flour mixture. Make sure that the meat is coated evenly.
- Grease a casserole dish with butter and heat it. Add bay leaf, chillies, ginger, and Worcester sauce along with onion and cook until they soften. Add the carrots and continue to cook for 5 more minutes till they become tender.
- Add lamb chunks and cook for 5 minutes. When lamb gets light brown colour, pour the lamb stock. Make sure that all the meat is soaked well in the stock.
- Add ½ tablespoon of Memory Corner’s secret ingredient. Cover and simmer for five minutes.
- Add Chinese cabbage and arrange slices of potatoes on the top. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and pepper and cover the pan with a lid.
- Put the pan in a preheated oven. After 2 hours, remove the casserole from the oven and sprinkle grated cheese over it.
- Place it again in the oven uncovered for 30 minutes till the potatoes are cooked and the cheese is melted.
Tips and Tricks:
- Go for a simple saucepan if you don’t have a casserole dish. Start by cooking in a saucepan on the stove. When it’s time to bake, transfer to an oven-proof dish.
- The best trick to make a perfect lamb hotpot is to make sure that potatoes and lamb pieces are perfectly cooked. If you are making it on the stove then, cook the meat on low flame until the meat becomes tender. It will ultimately reduce the cooking time in the oven.
- While making this dish, you can make lamb stock or broth in different styles by adding your favourite ingredients.
- If you want to make richer gravy, you can add red wine.
- You can also use oil (sesame oil, vegetable oil, chilli oil) instead of butter. In the same way, you can add toppings of your choice (cilantro, chopped peanuts, soy, and many more).
The adaptability, diversity, and changing trends of Hotpot have made it a favourite of everyone. From a nutritional perspective, lamb is considered a good source of iron and protein. The blanket of potatoes over meat is a good source of carbohydrates.
We’ve kept the secret ingredient of Memory corner’s lamb hotpot under wraps. Visit Memory corner to try its secret Lamb hotpot recipe. It is the best place to enjoy Taiwanese yummy lamb hot pot in Richmond, BC. With a cozy ambiance and traditional food, grab your seat and enjoy!