Tanmen Potato Soup

feaI fell in love with Tanmen soup after watching Midnight Diner: Tokyo Stories on Netflix. It looked like the perfect comfort soup that I had to try.

My version of Tanmen is made with potatoes and it’s a perfect complement to a soup that is traditionally made with noodles. I grew up in a potato loving town and this is the perfect itch fix for a homey Japanese dinner.

Click the images below to be directed where you can find the products and ingredients online.

I love making this soup in my Miso Shiru Donabe pot. It’s the perfect soup pot!

The other thing I love to add to my Tanmen soup is 2 different cuts of pork. I love using the pork shoulder and loin in paper thin cuts as it gives you both the super rich bite of a fattier cut of meat as well a nice meaty texture by using a leaner cut. It feels like a really great balance when you’re eating it.

One of my favorite blogs shared her version of Tanmen Ramen made with noodles if you’d prefer to do that instead. Here is a link to her blog. I highly recommend you check it out! http://www.justonecookbook.com/tan-men/

I included a few extra links to some recommended ingredients to help get you started 🙂

IMG_1011Chinese seasoning (or Chuka seasoning if you will) can be difficult to locate if you don’t live in a large city. This will provide the base broth flavoring for the soup if you live near a Nijiya or Japanese grocery look for the one in the image.

The links below are really fantastic alternatives that I highly recommend if you can’t find the one in the image above that are equally if not better tasting than the chinese seasoning for this recipe.

Ajiha – This is the key secret to creating the best Japanese Ramen broths or soup base at home. It’s a chicken and pork bone based broth that you can add to your soups that is the absolute best. I highly recommend this!

Lee Kum Kee Chicken Bouillon Powder – This is my favorite chicken bouillon to use for any soup recipes. It taste very different than your standard bouillon powder you’d find in your normal grocery. The flavor is uniquely savory and delicious and tastes just like chicken stock. Very clean and with a perfectly rich chicken flavor that tastes very natural and not just salty like other store brands.

Aka miso, which means Red miso, is my favorite for cooking. It’s the saltiest of all the miso varieties so you only need a little bit which I like. It will add a really deep flavor to your Tanmen and can withstand longer more intense cooking times, too. Any Red miso will work for this.

3 medium potatoes – I used russets but any variety will work
1 package of shimeji mushrooms
1/2 – 1 cup of carrots – I used baby carrots because I hate peeling 😛
1/2 cup bean sprouts
3 – 5 iceberg lettuce leaves – or a handful of lettuce from a salad bag as long as it’s iceberg lettuce
1/2 cup (4oz) thin slices of pork loin (can use more or less if you like)
1/2 cup (4oz) thin slices of pork shoulder (can use more or less if you like)
2 TB of sake
1 TB of Chuka Dashi (or the alternative options listed above)
1 TB of butter
3 cups of chicken stock
1 cup of water
Sesame Oil – just a splash to pan fry
Salt and Pepper to taste

-Start by boiling water for the potatoes. Once the water is boiling, add the potatoes and let them boil for 15-20 minutes just till you can piece a fork all the way through them. Drain, and place to the side
-Next, heat up your donabe pot to medium high and add in the sesami oil. Once heated, add in the pork slices and pan fry till just starting to brown
-Add in the butter and melt, once melted add in all the veggies except the lettuce. Season with salt and pepper. Pan fry for 5-7 minutes
-Add in the sake and give everything a good mix
-Add in all the chicken stock and water and turn up the heat to high. Wait for the water to boil
-Once boiling add in the chuka dashi stock and dissolve the miso in the stock. Turn the heat down to medium, place lid on, and let it cook for about 10-15 minutes just till the carrots are soft
-After 10-15 minutes is up remove the lid and give everything a good mix. It’ll smell so good, now!
-Add in the lettuce and place the lid back on for another 5 minutes

gres-After 5 minutes, remove lid and in the potatoes. Give it a mix and dish up and you’re done!


So tasty! I hope you have enjoyed this recipe 🙂

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31 thoughts on “Tanmen Potato Soup

  1. That soup looks very hearty. I must say I want to try this recipe, but where will I get red miso, ajiha, chuka seasoning and Donabe pot. I live in a tiny weeny city…no Japanese store. I have bookmarked it anyway.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Liz!
      I included images and links in the article that will direct you to the online store where you can find the exact red miso, ajha, seasoning, and donabe pot that I used for this recipe 🙂 Easy peasy!
      And just to make it a bit simpler, I attached the links in this reply too. I hope you will try this recipe soon! ❤
      Donabe Pot: http://amzn.to/2xglMVb
      Red Miso: http://amzn.to/2igE9qq
      Ajha: http://amzn.to/2vPsaVw
      Asian Chicken Bouillon: http://amzn.to/2vQaOYK


  2. Look yummy!! Interesting use of miso as soup base with chicken buillion cubes. I do a popular local ABC Soup. Called “ABC” as it contains Vits A, B & C. This is a local Singapore recipe. We use corn on cob, carrots, radish, potatoes boiled with soft pork bone. Some use chunks of lean meat to extract the flavor and discard the meat after. Simple yet nourishing 😃

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s one of my favorite soups, the pork really brings out lots of flavors. Mixed with the miso and stock it’s such a savory soup 🙂 I’ve included various links in the article that will direct you to the exact product I used on Amazon to make it easier for you to find. Let me know how it turns out!


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