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Tsukimi nabe

It’s lovely out right now. Drippy, gray, and blustery. Maybe most people hate rainy days but I love em’.

I’m on my fifth cup of tea and listening to the hollow patter of the heavy raindrops hitting the roof and echoing through the attic. The air smells metallic and has a weightiness to it that hangs heavy on my shoulders. I should avoid contact with anything soft such as the couch right now or I might just collapse right into it and never get up.

It’s days like these when I want nothing more than to sip on warm broth. Sometimes I wish I’d catch a cold just so I can watch movies on the couch all day while wrapped up in a giant fuzzy blanket and sipping on a bowl of chicken broth with rice and swirls of cooked egg.

This tsukimi nabe was made to be enjoyed on a day just like this.

Tsukimi nabe

Tsukimi means “moon-viewing” and is a reference to the addition of an egg to the soup right at the end of cooking. The bright yellow yolk symbolizes the full moon. With a rich broth full of tender vegetables, it is a wonderful meal for a dreary day.

I started by placing all my ingredients in the donabe. If you don’t have one it’s no problem; you can make this in any lidded pot, I’ve even made a soup like this in a baking dish covered with aluminum foil and baked in the oven.

Tsukimi nabe ingredients

Layered on a bed of napa cabbage are clusters of shiitake mushrooms, enoki mushrooms, carrots, yukon gold potatoes, soft tofu, and a sprinkling of scallions.

The broth is just water flavored with white miso, mirin, fish sauce, soy sauce, and hondashi, which is a dried form of dashi stock.

Tsukimi nabe broth

You pour the broth over everything else and turn the heat up to simmering with the lid on. After about 15 to 20 minutes, check the potatoes and carrots with a small knife, if they’re as soft as you like them then it’s done! The last thing to do is turn off the heat and crack an egg or two over the top, then just clamp on the lid for a few minutes to let the eggs set.

Tsukimi nabe simmering

The eggs in this nabe were still runny in the middle and when broken open they added a creamy richness to the hot broth.

Tsukimi nabe

The great thing about this dish is you can use whatever vegetables you want or have on hand, as long as there’s a soft egg cracked on top it’s still a tsukimi nabe!

Tsukimi nabe

This "moon-viewing" hot pot features golden-yolked eggs cracked over a hot and satisfying soup of vegetables and soft tofu.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 3 to 4 servings


  • 1/4 of a large napa cabbage
  • 4 to 6 shiitake mushroom caps
  • a small bunch of enoki mushrooms
  • 2 chopped carrots
  • 1 to 2 small yukon gold potatoes
  • half a block of soft tofu
  • 3 large scallions
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tbsp. white miso
  • 1 tbsp. hondashi
  • 1 tbsp. mirin
  • 1 tbsp. fish sauce
  • 1 tsp. soy sauce
  • 2 eggs
  • sesame seeds and togarashi to garnish

Cooking Directions

  1. Press the extra moisture out of a half block of soft tofu.
  2. Cut vegetables into bite size pieces and arrange over a bed of napa cabbage in the donabe, break off pieces of the tofu and add in as well.
  3. Heat water and miso in the microwave or over the stove until warm, whisk to break up miso completely. Add the other liquid ingredients to the broth.
  4. Pour broth into donabe and cook on medium high heat with the lid on for 15 to 20 minutes or until potatoes and carrots are tender.
  5. Turn off the heat and crack eggs over the top of the soup, put lid on and wait a few minutes for the eggs to set before serving.

After photographing, I topped the soup with some toasted sesame seeds and a sprinkle of spicy togarashi seasoning. I could really just drink that broth straight out of a mug though, which I may just do since there are plenty of leftovers and it’s still drippy out.

What is your go-to comfort food for a rainy night?


Food for comfort

Life is returning to normal around here. We signed the papers to rent the new house, so it’s really happening now. I can finally start thinking about how we want to arrange the furniture and how our lifestyle will change without winding myself up for nothing. :)

For the past two days I’ve been furiously cleaning and staging our apartment for showings. We were supposed to have one yesterday but it never materialized. I really want to get this place rented quickly so that we don’t have people continuously coming over to see it for the next month and a half. It’s a pain to have to keep the apartment spotless every day and crate the cats when someone comes to see it.

I’ve been enjoying some delicious food lately. Donut peaches are one of my favorite fruits but I can rarely ever find them. I had them for breakfast one morning with strawberry goat’s milk yogurt, which I’m now addicted to!

Donut peaches in strawberry goat yogurt

Last night’s dinner was fantastic too. Turkey and apple sausages with mashed sweet potatoes and kale sauteed in the sausage juices with caramelized onions.

Sausage, kale, and sweet potatoes

I like to mix butter and almond milk into my sweet potatoes to make them creamy. You’d think the almond milk would be weird, but it picks up on the sweet flavor of the potatoes nicely.

The kale is easy too. I just sauteed half an onion along with the sausages and when they were caramelized I added the kale right on top and let it wilt down. A few drops of water pulls the brown bits off the bottom of the pan to coat the kale leaves.

I cook a lot when I’m frazzled, and I certainly have been with all the packing and cleaning I’ve been doing.

This past weekend we visited Jeff’s family and were gifted these gorgeous homegrown tomatoes from his grandfather. (Hey Papa!) Aren’t they beautiful?

Gorgeous homegrown tomatoes

I used some of them to make an outstanding vegetable soup that I’ll share with you tomorrow or the next day. Seriously, these tomatoes are so good that I’ve been convinced to start growing some of our own when we move. They are so sweet and the texture is much less watery, more firm and supple.

And here’s another frazzled cooking foray…

Apple butter oat bars in pan

Those are apple butter oat bars, yum! I made these same bars just last week with sliced almonds rather than oats and strawberry jam rather than apple butter. I’ll definitely share the recipe because they are killer!

Can you tell I’m ready for fall to start? I’ve been making soups left and right and I’m definitely craving fall flavors like baked apple and pumpkin.

What do you do when you’re frazzled? Ever had a homegrown tomato?


Enjoying new foods

Good morning!

Puffed wheat made an appearance at breakfast again. I’m in love with this stuff, it has the texture of popcorn with the flavor of wheat. I sprinkled it on top of fig yogurt with blueberries and puffed amaranth. Apparently, I really like puffed foods.

Fig yogurt and puffed wheat

Tried something a little different for dinner last night. I make miso-glazed salmon about once every other week. As delicious as it is, it’s getting old. This time I used black bean sauce instead and it was really good!

Salmon in black bean sauce

This is the sauce, it’s very salty and slightly sour, not beany-flavored at all. I just spread a thin layer of the sauce over the salmon and baked it at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

And served it with a stir fry of yo choy sum and shiitake mushrooms…

Yo choy sum stir fry
To make this, I heat sesame oil in a wok and first stir fry the chopped yo choy sum stems. Then the mushrooms and scallions go in, followed by some pre-cooked rice. Once the rice is toasted I toss in the yo choy sum leaves and add a splash each of rice vinegar, mirin, and soy sauce. I also threw some seaweed flake and sesame seed in this one for some added flavor.

This whole dinner is done in 20 minutes. It’s one of my favorite meals to make because it takes very little effort for a very nice result. That and I love cooking with my wok, it’s a fun toy!

Today I’m polishing up a few new blog features that I’ve had in the works for a while. I completely overhauled my About page because the story I had there has absolutely nothing to do with what I blog about now. And maybe you noticed that I changed my header image. Well, I don’t like it and I’ll probably change it again soon. The bright block of green is just too jarring.

What types of header images are your favorite?