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Recipe: sweet potato country soup from Japan the Cookbook

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Written by:
Recipe: sweet potato country soup from Japan the Cookbook

Serves 6
1x300g momendofu or Japanese-style soft block tofu
100g burdock root, scrubbed
1 medium carrot, scrubbed
225g daikon, scrubbed
125g konnyaku, torn into bite-size pieces
2 usuage (deep-fried tofu pouches), halved lengthwise
3tbs gold sesame oil
300g boneless, skinless chicken thigh, cut into 2cm cubes
350g sweet potato, peeled and cut into 2cm cubes
150g taro roots, peeled and cut into 2cm cubes
100g komatsuna (Japanese mustard greens), turnip greens or mustard greens
2tbs slivered fresh ginger
6tbs inaka miso

Set the tofu on a chopping board and place a small saucer underneath it to angle the board into the sink (to catch drips). Lay another chopping board on top of the tofu to press out moisture for 20 minutes. Cut the tofu into 1 cm cubes.

Cut the burdock, carrot and daikon into triangular chunks. Put the konnyaku pieces in a wire-mesh sieve and pour over a steady stream of boiling water for about 10 seconds. Cut the usuage crosswise into strips 6mm wide, place into another sieve, and pour over boiling water for 10 seconds.

In a large, heavy pot, heat the sesame oil over a medium-low heat until hot, but not smoking. Scrape in the chicken, burdock, carrot, daikon, konnyaku and sweet potato. Stir-fry until the chicken is no longer pink (four to five minutes). Stir in the taro. Add three litres of cold water to the top of the chicken and vegetables and bring to a boil. Adjust to a lively simmer and cook until the vegetables have softened (12-15 minutes).

Cut the greens crosswise into 4cm pieces and stir into the pot of chicken and vegetables, along with the usuage and ginger. Cook for about one minute more. Slide the tofu gently into the pot. Remove from the heat. Measure the miso into a large ladle and dip the ladle into the soup to catch up some broth. Whisk the miso into the broth, dunk the ladle back into the soup, and stir to distribute.

Taken from Japan the Cookbook by Nancy Singleton Hachisu

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