Chicken and Radish Stew, known in Japanese as Soboro Daikon (そぼろ大根) is made with white daikon radish and ground chicken. Daikon is a vegetable used often in Japanese kitchens and you can smell daikon cooking in homes and restaurants around the country.
Soboro Daikon is considered a comfort meal in Japan that many grew with. It’s not hard to see why Chicken and Radish Stew is popular – it’s a simple meal to prepare, it can be served as an entree or a side dish, the tempting aroma of ginger and cooked daikon is one that reminds people of their childhood. It’s a very healthy dish – low in calories and high in protein and low in saturated fats (a serving of this stew contains over 10 grams of protein and less than 2 grams of saturated fat!)
Daikon radish are spicy and crunchy before cooking, however stewing the radish softens it and takes the bite out. Daikon is white before cooking, but after preparation it becomes translucent. When preparing soups or stews with daikon, it’s important to cook the daikon long enough to soften it.
Soboro, ground chicken, is another ingredient that is used in many Japanese recipes. Ground chicken has a light taste, it’s very healthy, and it can be cooked with miso or other traditional Japanese spices to create low fat and protein rich dishes. My recipe for Nasu Dengaku features Soboro, and makes a good accompaniment to Soboro Daikon.
The stew is flavored with plenty of fresh ginger. Soy sauce and Japanese cooking sake are added to give the stew a little saltiness, but to also impart an authentic Japanese taste to the meal.
We eat Chicken and Daikon Radish stew regularly at my house and once you try it I think you will see why. Prepare it as a side dish or as an entree and enjoy it the next time you decide to cook a Japanese meal!