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Cathy Katin-Grazzini

Cathy's Kitchen Prescription LLC




One of my favorite Japanese miso soups, hōtō is chock full of chewy fat whole wheat noodles, chunky Japanese root and green vegetables, shiitake mushrooms, and custardy tofu, cooked together in a vegetarian dashi broth. Kabocha squash, starchy taro, potatoes, and the floury noodles thicken and flavor the soup, creating a wonderfully tasty, fragrant, beautiful soup. Use seasonal Japanese greens to enjoy hōtō throughout the year. Find Japanese vegetables  in local Asian grocery shops.


For the more adventurous of you, I’ve included instructions to make homemade noodles, but whole wheat pappardelle will knock an hour

off your prep time.


Soaking time for dashi: overnight

Prep time: 1½ hour if making fresh noodles; 30 minutes using dry pappardelle

Cook time: 30 minutes


Dashi Broth

1 3x3” square of kombu seaweed

10-12 small dried organic or sulfite-free shiitake mushrooms



1 cup atta flour (whole durum wheat flour available online or in South Asian groceries)

3/8 cup besan (chana dal flour available online or in South Asian groceries) or chickpea flour

4 ½ ounces or 130 grams silken tofu, cut in half lengthwise, then cut in 1/4" slices

1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon shiro (mild, white) miso paste

Tapioca flour or corn starch for dusting

Or 1/3 (of 16-ounce or 500 gram) package of dried whole wheat pappardelle



1 large juicing carrot, peeled and cut in ¼” thick disks or half moons

1 large yellow onion, roughly cut

½ medium kabocha squash, seeds removed, cut in 1” slices and then in 2” pieces

½ large daikon radish, peeled and cut in ¼” thick disks or half moons

8 medium fresh shitake mushrooms, stems removed, cut in ½” slices*

Bunch of fresh shimeji or maitake mushrooms, bottoms cut off, separated into small clumps

1(14-ounce) package soft or medium tofu, sliced in half lengthwise, then cut in ½” slices

4 small taros, peeled, cut into 1 ½” pieces

2 russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1 ½” pieces

1 large (3') burdock roots peeled, cut into 2 ½” matchsticks

1 large bunch of mild Japanese spinach (horenso) or other Japanese greens like mustardy mizuna or kamatsuna, washed, cut in 2” slices

2/3 cup shiro (mild, white) miso paste, or to taste


* Shiitake stems are typically much tougher. Either reserve for a stock or cut out base and simmer first in water until tender before adding to the soup.


Vegan Dashi Stock

In separate glass or ceramic mixing bowls soak kombu in 7 cups of water and dried shiitake in 7 cups of water. Refrigerate overnight. Discard kombu, cut the mushrooms in ¼” slices, strain the stocks and combine. This is our dashi stock.



In a food processor bowl combine the atta and besan flours, and turmeric. Add silken tofu and shiro miso. Run the processor for 2-3 minutes or until the dough gathers into a ball.  Remove and knead for 10 minutes, adding a bit of atta flour if needed to prevent sticking. Wrap in plastic and rest the dough to relax its gluten 30 minutes minutes.  If rolling by hand, roll into a large uniformly rectangle 1/16” thick, resting the dough as needed for 10 minutes if it toughens and becomes difficult to roll. 


Alternatively, use a pasta maker. Cut dough in quarters, keeping 3 quarters covered in plastic to prevent drying.  Roll each quarter through the widest setting, folding in half and re-rolling at least 10 times to create a uniform smooth dough. Then use the graduated settings to bring the thickness down to about 1/16”. 


Dust each side w/tapioca or corn starch, fold in half widthwise and again in half. Cut into ½” wide strips. Cut noodle length in half.  Shake out noodles immediately and set aside in a soft mound.



Like many Japanese soups, an attractive presentation enhances one's enjoyment. Thus, vegetables are not stirred together but are grouped individually so each variety can later be identified and savored at the table.


In a large pot (or in individual nabe pots), heat dashi stock.


Add onion, potato, daikon, carrot, taro, burdock.  Bring to a low simmer and cook for 10 minutes.


Add mushrooms, fresh and soaked, the baked tofu, kabocha, and whole wheat pappardelle, if using. Simmer 5 minutes, pressing the vegetables gently down with a ladle, but do not stir.


Shake off excess starch and add the fresh noodles, if using. Press noodles gently into stock. Cook 5 minutes.


Add the Japanese spinach and gently slide in the silken tofu. Cook 1-2 minutes or until tender.


Turn off the heat.


Place miso into a large deep ladle. Submerse partially and with chopsticks, slowly mix in heated soup to dissolve the miso paste.  As it dissolves, add it to different areas of the pot, gently swirling with chopsticks to disperse. Continue until all miso is added. Taste and adjust flavor by adding more miso if needed.


Serve individual nabe pots or transfer the hōtō immediately to warmed bowls, grouping each ingredient as best you can.


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