New Year's Soup with Mochi (zoni)

Zoni, or ozoni, is the name of the ceremonial mochi soup that is always served during the New Year in Japan. Although it's a traditional dish, what ingredients go into the soup depend on the region where it's made as well as the family making it. This version is probably one of the simplest.

New Year's Soup with Mochi (zoni)
Photographed by REIKO NANTO

Recipe by
Takashi Tamura




Soups & Stews



Calorie count is per serving.

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 2 mochi rice cakes (pre-cut into rectangles)
  • 150 g chicken thigh
  • 2 fresh shiitake mushrooms
  • 15 cm Japanese leek
  • 60 g komatsuna Japanese mustard greens
  • 15 g carrot
  • [A]

    • 500 ml dashi
    • 2 tbsp sake
    • 1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • A pinch of salt



Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces and immerse in boiling water. Immediately plunge into cold water, drain, and wipe off the surface scum. Remove the shiitake stems. Cut the leek into 3-4 cm lengths.


Parboil the komatsuna in boiling water along with a pinch of salt and then plunge into cold water to blanch. Squeeze out the excess moisture and cut into 3-4 cm lengths. Cut the carrot lengthwise into shreds.


Grill the mochi until golden brown.


Add [A] to a pot and place over medium heat. When it comes to a boil, add the chicken, shiitake, and leeks. When the vegetables are cooked through, add the komatsuna and carrots and simmer briefly to heat through.


Divide the mochi, chicken, and vegetables equally and arrange colorfully in individual serving bowls. Cover with broth.