Asian Noodle Soup with Winter Vegetables and Tofu


Kombu (a type of Japanese seaweed) and bonito flakes (dried-fish flakes) are available at Asian markets.


  • 6 cups water

  • 4 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems trimmed and reserved, caps cut into ¾-inch slices

  • ½ ounce dried shiitake mushrooms (5 large)

  • 1 six-inch square dried kombu

  • ¾ cup bonito flakes (¼ ounce)

  • ¼ cup plus 1 teaspoon reduced-sodium soy sauce

  • 2 tablespoons mirin

  • ½ large sweet potato (about 4 ounces), peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut crosswise into ¼-inch-thick slices

  • 6 ounces soba noodles (2 bundles)

  • 3 ounces snow peas, trimmed and halved

  • 3 ounces kohlrabi, peeled and cut into ¼-inch-thick sticks

  • 8 ounces silken tofu, cut into 8 slices


  1. Bring 6 cups water, mushroom stems, dried mushrooms, and kombu to a boil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Remove from heat, and add bonito flakes. Let stand until flakes sink to bottom of pot, about 3 minutes.

  2. Line a sieve with cheesecloth. Strain broth through sieve into pot, and discard solids. Stir in soy sauce and mirin. (You should have 5 cups.)

  3. Cook sweet potato in a large pot of boiling water until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl using a slotted spoon. Add noodles to boiling water. Cook according to package directions. Drain. Rinse with cold water.

  4. Divide noodles among 4 bowls. Arrange sweet potato, sliced mushroom caps, snow peas, kohlrabi, and tofu on top of noodles. Bring broth to a simmer, then immediately divide among bowls. Serve immediately.

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