Fast Recipes

Pork and shiitake meatballs meatballs with sweet soy

With Japan's tsukune as our culinary inspiration.

By Lisa Featherby
  • Serves 4
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We've taken inspiration from Japan's tsukune, small skewered meatballs that are usually cooked over a hibachi or binchotan charcoal grill, yakitori-style. In this recipe, we've skipped the skewers and pan-fried the meatballs in a sweet soy-based sauce.


  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 2 tsp honey
  • Coriander, to serve
  • 2 spring onions (optional), white part thinly sliced, green part sliced, to serve
  • Cucumber salad dressed with roasted-sesame seed dressing (see note), to serve
  • 500 gm coarsely minced pork
  • 4-5 shiitake mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 spring onions, white part only, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp roasted sesame seeds
  • ½ tsp togarashi (see note)
  • 1 tbsp roasted sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp salt flakes


  • 1
    For meatballs, add ingredients into a bowl, mix to combine, season to taste and roll into walnut-sized balls. Set aside on a plate.
  • 2
    Heat oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Fry meatballs in 2 batches, and turn gently until golden and almost cooked through (3-4 minutes).
  • 3
    Return all meatballs to pan and add soy sauce, mirin and honey and turn gently until meatballs are glazed (2-3 minutes).
  • 4
    For gomasio, combine ingredients in a bowl.
  • 5
    Top meatballs with coriander and spring onion, season with gomasio to taste, and serve with cucumber salad and rice on the side.


Japanese-style sesame dressing is available from Asian grocers. If unavailable, mix a little honey, tahini and rice wine vinegar and thin to a dressing with a little water, then stir in roasted sesame seeds.