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Japanese Dinner, Momofuku Style

soba with scallions and tofu

Some nights you just need a little detox, a light dinner to take the edge off days-in-a-row of too much rich food, or a little too much imbibing. OJ calls that meal, “Japanese Dinner.” It’s clean — simply cubed tofu topped with green onions and drizzled with soy sauce, served with rice and quick pickled cucumbers.

Is it Japanese? Yes, but it’s probably Korean and Chinese, too. It took David Chang to tell me, “Hey, why don’t you make that with noodles instead of rice? And add some ginger, too.” And Japanese Dinner, Momofuku style was born.


It’s perfect for a personal detox or just on a damn hot day. I know there have to be a few of those ahead of us this summer. On the noodles, some soba has a horrifying amount of sodium. I use Hakubaku brand, which is made in Australia, but is available locally in Seattle at both PCC and Uwajimaya. I’ve never seen their ramen here, which, I love you guys, but “Japan-easy.” Really?!!

The usukuchi (light soy sauce) you can do without, low-sodium shoyu works as well and no HFCS.

Japanese Dinner, Momofuku Style

Print Recipe
Serves: 3-4


  • 1 package firm (or extra firm) tofu, cut into 1/2 in. cubes
  • 1 270 g. package buckwheat soba noodles (3 bundles)
  • 1 batch Momofuku ginger scallion sauce
  • A sprinkle or two of roasted sesame seeds (white or black goma, whatever you've got) to taste
  • Extra shoyu to taste



Make the ginger scallion sauce and let sit for 20 minutes.


Boil noodles according to package directions and rinse under cold water. Set aside. Lightly toss together the tofu, careful not to break it up much, noodles and ginger-scallion sauce. Garnish with roasted sesame seeds and serve.

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