nihongo|Teppanyaki|鉄板焼き|teppan'yaki is a type of Japanese cuisine that uses an iron griddle ("teppan") to cook food. Although it is viewed in the western world as Japanese cuisine, it is not popular in Japan except when used for okonomiyaki.


The word "teppanyaki" is derived from "teppan" (鉄板), which means "iron plate", and "yaki" (焼き), which means "fried or broiled".


In Japan, "teppanyaki" may refer to any of a number of dishes cooked using a "teppan", including okonomiyaki, yakisoba, and monjayaki, frequently with the hot plate located in the center of the diners' table.


Typical ingredients used for teppanyaki western style are beef, shrimp, scallops, lobster, chicken and assorted vegetables; Soybean oil is typically used to cook the ingredients, and for Japanese style are noodles (Yakisoba), cabbage with sliced meat or seafood (Okonomiyaki) which are cooked using regular vegetable oil, animal oil from fat or a mixture of both. In Japan, many teppanyaki restaurants feature Kobe beef. Side dishes of mung bean sprouts, zucchini (even though zucchini is not a popular vegetable in Japan and rarely found in the market), garlic chips or fried rice usually accompany the meal. Some restaurants provide sauces in which to dip the food; usually, in Japan, only soy sauce is offered.


The originator of the teppanyaki-style steakhouse is the Japanese restaurant chain "Misono", which introduced the concept of cooking Western-influenced food on a "teppan" in Japan in 1945. [ [http://www.misono.org/home.htm Misono website] ja. Accessed September 12, 2007.] They soon found that the cuisine was even more popular with foreigners than with the Japanese, who enjoyed both watching the skilled maneuvers of the chefs preparing the food as well as the cuisine, somewhat more familiar than more traditional Japanese dishes. As the restaurants became more popular tourist spots with non-Japanese, the chain introduced changes increasing the performance aspect of the chef's preparation, such as stacking round slices of onion in the shape of Mt. FujiFact|date=June 2008 and lighting alcohol, usually vodka, contained within on fire, producing a flaming onion volcano. Non-tourists in Japan rarely eat at teppanyaki restaurants that feature western type of food as most of the ingredients are not part of the Japanese dietary system.Fact|date=July 2008 The teppanyaki widely frequented by the Japanese are those which feature Okonomiyaki, Yakisoba or Monjayaki which are very popular in Japanese cuisine.Fact|date=July 2008


The form of teppanyaki most familiar to North Americans consists of steak and other meats, along with vegetable accompaniments, and is often known by the name of "hibachi", with the establishments often referred to as "Japanese steakhouses."

In the United States, teppanyaki was made famous by the Benihana restaurant chain which opened its first restaurant in New York in 1964. [ [http://www.benihana.com/about/history How Benihana Started] at [http://www.benihana.com benihana.com.] Accessed September 12, 2007.] Benihana and other chains of teppanyaki steakhouses continue to place an emphasis on the chef performing a show for the diners, continuing to introduce new variations and tricks. The chef might juggle utensils, flip a shrimp into his/her shirt pocket, catch an egg in his/her hat, toss an egg up in the air and split it with a knife, flip flattened shrimp pieces into the diners' mouths, or arrange onion rings into fire-shooting volcanos.

Another piece of equipment in the same family is a flattop grill, consisting of a flat piece of steel over circular burners and typically smaller and round like a Mongolian barbecue.


See also

*Sizzling Plate (Chinese: _zh. 鐵板餐)

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