• Keihan (Chicken and shiitake rice soup) (Adam Liaw)Source: Adam Liaw

If the clear blue waters of the Amami islands in Japan aren't enough of a reason to visit, this local dish is. And while you plan your itinerary, you can test version of it at home.






Skill level

Average: 4.2 (16 votes)


  • 1 chicken breast
  • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 3 slices ginger
  • 3 spring onions, cut into 5 cm lengths, a few green tops reserved to serve
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce, plus extra to serve
  • 1 tbsp sake
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 cups warm cooked Japanese rice
  • ½ tsp yuzu kosho (Japanese yuzu pepper paste) (optional)
  • 1 sheet nori, very thinly sliced

Shredded egg

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ tsp sesame oil
  • a pinch of salt

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


  1. Place the chicken breast in a saucepan with 1½ litres of water. Add the dried shiitake mushrooms, ginger, spring onions, soy sauce, sake and salt. Bring to a very gentle simmer, then simmer over low heat for 10 - 15 minutes, skimming any scum that rises to the surface. The water should barely be moving.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and stand the chicken in the broth for 5 minutes. Remove the mushrooms, trim off the stalks and finely slice the caps. Place the sliced mushrooms in a bowl and drizzle with a little extra soy sauce.
  3. Remove the chicken from the broth and shred the chicken by hand. Strain the broth through a fine sieve and discard the solids. Return the broth to the pan.
  4. Meanwhile, for the shredded egg, combine the egg, sesame oil and salt in a bowl. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and add the egg, spreading it over the base in a thin layer by rotating the pan. When set, flip the egg and cook the other side. Remove from the pan, roll up and slice thinly.
  5. Divide the warm rice between 4 bowls. Top the rice with the chicken, mushrooms, reserved sliced spring onions and shredded egg, as well as a small amount of yuzu kosho (if using) and some sliced nori. Heat the broth and serve in a teapot to pour over the chicken and rice.

Adam Liaw cooks, laughs, and explores culture with some of Australia's most beloved in The Cook Up With Adam Liaw.

Photography by Adam Liaw.