I'm sure you have heard of Pepper Lunch, an affordable DIY fast food steakhouse with more than 200 outlets in Japan. With its unique design patented in Japan, the iron plate is part of the successful formula of Pepper Lunch. Meat grilled using the iron plate remains tender and juicy. You can enjoy food with a sizzle.
In the past, I never bothered to try this because I thought it was mostly beef steak which I do not take. It all started a few days ago, when I chanced upon Pepper Lunch at a foodcourt stall, and without knowing what else to eat, I ordered the Double Unagi set. It came with pepper rice topped with corn, generous pieces of unagi and a sunny side-up egg, all sizzling on the hotplate. It went very well with both the garlic sauce and honey sauce. I like to drizzle both sauces onto the rice and chicken and watch the food sizzled. A satisfying and affordable meal.
On another day lunch time, again I could not decide what to eat. I kept thinking of Pepper Lunch. So this time, I ordered the Pepper Chicken set. It also came with a bowl of miso soup. Almost the same experience as the previous meal. I really liked the sauces with the peppery taste of everything.
I had the sudden idea to try and emulate the Pepper Lunch I had, and this time it was for dinner. Well, I did not have any hot plates at home but that was not going to deter me from trying. I cooked the white rice, adding a little Dang gui soya sauce, chopped garlic and some herb seasoning into the rice cooker. I stir fried the corn with a little butter. I marinated the chicken chunks with seasoning powder, sesame oil, little soya sauce, lots of pepper, and corn flour. I bought two pieces of frozen unagi (I was cooking for 7 people). I decided I needed to add veggies although Pepper Lunch did not have veggies as a side. I used celery and carrots and stir fried them with garlic and shitake sauce. Then I did the eggs.
This was the result, my Pepper Dinner sans the hotplate!! I topped my rice with corn and chopped spring onions and sesame seeds. I am proud to say that I did not use any salt in cooking this. Overall it was ok. If I had the honey and garlic sauces, it would have tasted better. The improvement I would make for the next round, I would steam the corn instead so that it is more crunchy. Another boo-boo mistake, I forgot to coat some oil on the base when I was baking the unagi. So it ended with a slightly black burnt bottom, stuck to the aluminium foil. >__< Next time I would make a simple soup too, so that it would not be too dry.
Here's the takeaway version, for my sis and family. I suddenly remembered I had these extra plastic takeaway boxes with compartments, so I put them into good use. Well, I believe practice makes perfect. I will try different variations again since I have many guinea pigs who can test dishes for me. Who wants to place an order for takeaway Pepper Dinner next time, let me know! Haha!