Sweet and sour soup with udon noodles, shiitake and tofu

Sweet and sour soup.
Sweet and sour soup. Photo: Eddie Jim

Tofu is perfect in this one-pot meal with steaming, swimming noodles, shiitake mushrooms and crisp snow peas.


4 cups water

3 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked overnight in 1 cup of water, sliced finely and left in soaking liquid

4cm piece kombu, soaked for 1 hour and finely chopped

1/2 cup onion, cut into fine half moons

1/2 tsp ginger, sliced finely

1/2 cup firm tofu, cut into 1cm cubes

arrowroot flour

light vegetable oil

1/2 cup carrots, cut into matchsticks

200g fresh udon noodles

1 cup snow peas, each cut into 3 long strips

2 tbsp green onions, finely sliced diagonally

1 tsp ginger juice, grated and squeezed

2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds (optional)

Sweet and sour sauce

4 tbsp shoyu

2 tbsp umeboshi vinegar

1 tbsp brown rice vinegar

4 tbsp brown rice syrup or barley malt


To make a vegetable broth, place the water, along with the shiitake soaking water, kombu, onions and ginger into a pot and bring to the boil. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, dust the tofu cubes with the arrowroot and deep-fry in the oil.

Drop the tofu cubes into a bowl of warm water to remove any oil. Squeeze out any moisture and set aside.

Add the carrots, noodles and tofu cubes to the vegetable broth and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

To make the sweet and sour sauce, combine all the ingredients and add to the vegetable broth to simmer for a further 2 minutes.

Place the soup into bowls and top with snow peas, green onions, a generous splash of ginger juice and toasted sesame seeds.

Serve warm during the cooler months, or chilled during summer.