Category Archives: Japanese foods

Vegetable and Fried Bean Curd Soup (Noppei – Jiru)

serves 4

4 dried Japanese mushrooms (shiitake)

1/2 medium carrot, using thick end, scraped

250 g (8 oz) Japanese white radish (daikon), peeled

250 g (8 oz) taro, peeled

125 g (4 oz) salsify or scorzonera, scraped and dropped into cold water

2 pieces froed bean curd (aburaage)

125 g (4 oz) cooked, packaged fernbrake, bracken (warabi), optional

175 g (6 oz) devil’s-tongue noodles (shirataki)

800 ml (1 1/3 paints) first soup stock

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

pinch MSG

1 teaspoon arrowroot

1 tablespoon flat parsley, finely chopped


Soak the mushrooms in warm water for 30 minutes. drain, squeeze out, remove the hard stems and cut into quarters. Thinly slice the carrot and radish. Stack the slices and cut into quarters. Thinly Slice the taro. If the slices and cut into quarters. Chop the salsify ot scorzonera and return it to the cold water as it discolours very quickly. Rinse the fried bean curd in hot water, halve and cut into 1cm (1/2 in) slices. If using the fernbrake or bracken, rinse it and cut into 2.5 cm (1 in) slice.

Combine all the vegetable in a saucepan of boiling water, and simmer for 2 minutes. Drain and set aside. Drop the noodles into boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Drain and cut into 2.5cm (2 in ) pieces.

Pour the stock into a saucepan, add the vegetables, bean curd and noodles and simmer, covered, until all the vegetables are soft, 10 or 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt, add the soy sauce and pinch of MSG, and the arrowroot mixed with a teaspoon of cold water. Stir to mix and cook until lightly thickened, about 1 to 2 minutes. Pour the soup into 4 bowls and sprinkle with the parsley.

If fern brake, bracken (warabi) is not available use 250g (8 oz) spinach, cooked in boiling salted water for 4 minutes, drained, squeezed dry, formed into a roll and cut into 2.5 cm (1 in) slices. Put the spinach into the soup bowls just before adding the hot soup.

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Posted by on December 17, 2011 in Japanese foods, Soups, Vegetarian


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Noodle and cucumber soup (somen to kyuri No Suimono)

This summer soup is appealing in its fresh simplicity. The clear, amber – coloured soup is garnished with thin wheat noodles and delicate green-edged cucumber slices.

Serves 4

25g somen (wheat noodles)

50g sliced, unpeeled cucumber

800ml first soup stock

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1 teaspoon light soy sauce( usukuchi shoyu)

1 tablespoon sake (optional)

Drop the noodles into a saucepan of briskly boiling water and cook, uncovered , for 5 minutes.

Add 300 ml cold water and bring back to a boil over high heat.

Drain, refresh quickly in cold water, drain and set aside.

Using a small spoon, scrape the seeds out of the cucumber , then slice thinly.

In a saucepan, combine the soup stock, salt and soy sauce with the sake, if liked, and bring to simmer.

Divide the noodles among 4 soup bowls, pour on the stock and float the cucumber slices on top.

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Posted by on December 12, 2011 in Japanese foods, Soups


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Japanese Chicken grill

6 chicken wings (do not skin)

3/4 cup soya sauce

1 tbsp flour

1/3 cup sugar

a few sliced of lemon

Combine and stir together the soya sauce, flour, sugar and 1/4 cup water till the sugar is melted. Cook over a medium fire till the sauce is thickened.

Spear each of the six chicken wings  with two (25 cm long each) bamboo skewers, set 2 1/2 cm apart. Grill the wings over hot coals(10 cm above the heat source, with the skin side down, to wards the heat, for 4 minutes) Turn and grill for another 3 minutes. Brush the chicken with the prepared sauce and grill again. Brush and grill six to seven  times within 10 minutes.

serve with lemon slices.

Soak the bamboo skewers in water to cover for 15 minutes before using them, otherwise they tend to burn.

The sauce, kept covered in the fridge, keep for several weeks.

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Posted by on November 7, 2011 in Chicken, Japanese foods


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