Photo: Vegetable Chowder (Kenchinjiru)

A traditional soup to keep going in winter.

Cooking time
25 minutes
  • Nutrition information is for one serving.
  • Yam cake comes in white and a dark color as well as in several different shapes. Any kind may be used in this recipe. Canned yam cake may also be used. It will absorb seasonings better when it is torn with the hands rather than cut with a knife.

    It is important to skim off the foam while simmering the soup.

    If using frozen taros, parboil briefly before slicing into rounds.

Ingredients(Servings: 4)

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1 block

6 cm (2-1/2 in.)



1/3 stalk


125 g (4-1/2 oz.)

1 sheet

1/2 bunch

1 L (4-1/4 US cups)

1 "bsp


1-1/2 Tbsp

1/2 tsp

2 Tbsp


  1. Wrap the tofu in a clean cheesecloth and allow to rest for 20 minutes on a cutting board propped up at an angle to drain off the water. Squeeze and coarsely crumble tofu with your fingers.
  2. Cut the daikon radish and carrot into half-rounds; remove the shiitake mushroom stalks and cut into quarters.
    Thinly slice the burdock root diagonally and rinse in water.
    Peel the taro roots, slice into rounds, then rub with salt (not included in ingredients) onto the slices to remove some of the stickiness and rinse.
  3. Tear the yam cake into bite-size pieces and boil.
    Pour boiling water on the deep-fried tofu to remove some oil, then cut into thin strips.
  4. Heat the salad oil in a pot; stir-fry (2) and (3).
  5. Pour in the soup stock and simmer for 20 minutes, skimming off foam periodically.
    Cut the mustard spinach into 4 cm (1-1/2 in.) lengths, then add it and the tofu and season with (A) to serve.