Pumpkins have a slightly cooling nature, with a sweet and slightly bitter flavor. Cooking pumpkins for an extended period of time makes their thermal nature neutral to slightly warming. Pumpkins strengthen the spleen and stomach, as well as build Qi.
- 3 cups dashi (fish broth), or other soup broth
- 2 ½ lb. Kabocha pumpkin
- 1 ½ tablespoon soy sauce (or tamari to be gluten free)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 or 2 tablespoons sake or mirin (sweetened rice wine)
- First wash, and then cut open the kabocha and remove seeds. Then cut into small chunks. Be careful as raw kabocha is very tough. The outer rind is completely edible so there is no need to remove, except for trimming off any very hard or gnarled parts. The traditional base in Japan is dashi, however, other types of clear broth can be used as well.
- Put broth into a small pot and add kabocha chunks. Bring to a boil and then simmer on medium for 20-30 minutes until kabocha is soft enough to be pierced easily by a fork.
- Add in other ingredients and continue to simmer another 15-20 minutes to reduce the broth.
- Remove from heat and let it sit covered until cooler so the kabocha absorbs more of the cooking liquid flavor. Serve slightly warm to room temperature, or reheat a little before serving.