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Noodles in Kuzu Broth

This dish has a nice warming effect and is especially good during cold weather.

Prep Time

20 min

Cooking Time

20 min





  • 2 packages udon (16 oz), cooked

  • 4 to 5 shiitake mushrooms, soaked, stems removed, and thinly sliced

  • 1 strip kombu, 1-2 inches long, soaked

  • 4 to 5 deep-fried tofu strips, 2 inches wide by 3 inches long by 1/2 inch thick (deep-fry until golden and then slice into thin strips)

  • light sesame oil, for deep-frying tofu

  • 4 to 5 tbsp kuzu, diluted

  • 5 to 6 cups water, including shiitake and kombu soaking water

  • 1 cup onion finely diced or minced

  • 2 to 3 tbsp shoyu

  • 1/4 cup bonito flakes, for garnish (can be omitted)

  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated, for garnish

  • 1 sheet nori, toasted and cut in thin strips, for garnish 

  • 1/4 cup scallion, finely sliced, for garnish


  1. Place the shiitake, kombu, and water in a pot. Cover and bring to a boil.

  2. Reduce the flame to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the kombu and set aside to use in other dishes. Cover and simmer another 5 minutes. 

  3. Add the deep-fried tofu strips and onion. Cover and simmer another 5 minutes. Add the diluted kuzu, stirring constantly to prevent lumping.

  4. When the liquid has thickened, add the shoyu and reduce the flame to low.

  5. Cover and simmer another 5 minutes. Place the cooked udon in the thickened broth and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, just enough to heat the udon.

  6. Place the udon, thickened broth, and tofu in serving bowls. Garnish each with 2 to 3 teaspoons of bonito flakes, several strips of nori, 1/4 teaspoon grated ginger, and 2 to 3 teaspoons of chopped scallion. Serve piping hot. 

  • For those who wish to avoid oil, do not deep-fry the tofu. Simply cube the tofu and add it to the broth at the same time as the shoyu.


Michio and Aveline Kushi

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