A tasty prawn broth.


  • 8 prawns
  • 2 tblsp cornflour
  • 500 ml niban dashi (good fish stock)
  • 8 fresh asparagus stalks (trimmed)
  • 8 small carrots
  • 4 fresh shiitake mushroom caps, etched with a cross on top (these mushrooms are available in good supermarkets or delicatessen)
  • 1 tblsp mirin (sweet rice wine)
  • 1 l good fish stock
  • 2 tsp light soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoond finely julienned lime or lemon zest


  • Using a small sharp knife carefully devein each prawn by making a small slit in the centre of the body and pulling the tail through the slit to create a resemblance to a flower.
  • Sprinkle the prawns with the cornflour.
  • Heat the fish stock to boiling, then add the prawns.
  • Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the prawn flesh is opaque.
  • Remove the prawns with a slotted spoon.
  • Cut the asparagus into 5cm/2in lengths.
  • Peel and slice the carrots, and cut the slices into flower shapes with a small metal cutter.
  • Add the mushroom caps to the simmering liquid and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Cook the asparagus pieces and the carrots in the broth for 8-10 minutes.
  • Remove the mushroom caps, carrot and asparagus with a slotted spoon and sprinkle them with the rice wine.
  • Divide the prepared prawns, mushrooms, carrot and asparagus into 4 individual soup bowls.
  • Add the second amount of fish stock and the soy sauce to the cooking liquid and heat to boiling.
  • Pour the soup into the bowls and garnish with the lime or lemon zest.
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