Cold Prevention Soup

Cold Prevention Soup

This textured chicken broth with tofu and ham has restorative powers when you feel like you’re coming down with a cold or the flu. Reheat leftovers the following day for lunch or a light supper.


  • 1 ½ quarts (48 fl oz/1,5 liters) Japanese Chicken Broth (recipe follows)
  • 6 tablespoons sake
  • 1 teaspoon flaky sea salt
  • 1 (10 ½ oz/300 g) momendofu or Japanese-style soft block tofu, smashed by hand
  • 5 oz (150 g) ham, cut into â…ś-inch (1 cm) cubes
  • 1 medium negi or 3 fat scallion (spring onions) cut diagonally into ÂĽ-inch (6 mm) slices
  • 4 tablespoons well crushed kudzu powder
  • 4 tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley, mitsuba, or seri [Japanese wild parsley]
  • freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a medium pot, heat the chicken broth and sake and season with the salt. Slide in the smashed tofu, ham, and negi and bring to a simmer. Cook over medium-low heat to soften the negi, about 2 minutes. Measure the kudzu powder into a small bowl, and whisk in a ladle of soup to emulsify.
  2. Add back into the pot of soup and simmer for about 2 more minutes to thicken. Throw in the parsley and serve hot with a fresh grind of black pepper.
Japanese Chicken Broth

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 Âľ hours
Makes: 3 quarts (3 liters)

  • 12 oz (350 g) uncooked chicken bones
  • 2 medium negi or 6 fat scallions (spring onions), cut crosswise into 2-inch (5 cm) pieces
  • 2-inch (5 cm) piece fresh ginger, scrubbed and cut crosswise into ÂĽ-inch (6 mm) slices

Japanese stocks and broths are generally much lighter in taste than Western ones; so Japanese chicken broth is similarly subtler and less chicken-forward than typical chicken broth. Duck or turkey bones can substitute for the chicken.

  1. Rinse the bones under cold running water and drop into a large stockpot. Add the negi and ginger and fill with 4 quarts (4 liters) cold water. Cover and bring to an almost boil over high heat, 10–15 minutes. Watch the pot so that it does not boil since boiling will result in a cloudy broth. (That said, this broth tends to be cloudy from the negi.) Immediately reduce the heat so the broth gently simmers, uncover, and cook for about 1 ½ hours, skimming occasionally. Strain the broth (discard the bones and aromatics).

Excerpted from Japan: The Cookbook Copyright © 2018 by Nancy Singleton Hachisu. Used with permission of Phaidon.  All rights reserved.

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