Algae Soup and Pale Broth from Stardew Valley

When you start playing the farming game Stardew Valley, you’re going to pick up a lot of White Algae and Green Algae from fishing and monster drops. They’re edible as is but are, to be frank, a little lacking. As the game progresses, you need better ways to heal up or give yourself energy to complete all those farm chores!

Enter Algae Soup and Pale Broth; you obtain these recipes by befriending Clint the blacksmith and Marnie the rancher in Pelican Town. After finally getting their relationships to three hearts, they send you little clips with these recipes in the mail.

Well, I know a couple of recipes. I thought I’d send you one… maybe it’ll help you mine more ore or something.

Take care.


Dear neighbor,

[W]hen I’m not taking care of animals I like to experiment in the kitchen. Since we’ve become friends I want to share some recipes with you.

I hope you like this!


They may not seem like much, but these recipes are some of your first steps towards learning how to cook in-game.

For their real-life counterparts, I took inspiration from miso soup: a delicious Japanese staple dish that is comforting and comes together easily.

What is Miso Soup?

Miso soup has a long, long history in Japanese culture: from its invention in the Kamakura Period (1192-1333 CE), to its inclusion in the traditional Japanese meal structure of ichiju sansai (one soup, three dishes), miso soup has been a cornerstone of Japanese cuisine.

But miso soup, at its core, is a mixture of three elements. Every miso soup includes dashi–a kind of Japanese broth–as well as miso, the fermented soybean paste, and other fill-ins such as seasonal vegetables, seafood, tofu, seaweed, or herbs.

When it comes to Algae Soup and Pale Broth, both contain the same elements as traditional miso soup; both have a base of dashi, with miso and other ingredients added in.

A white bowl filled with a bright green soup.
It’s a little slimy.—Stardew Valley Algae Soup item description © ConcernedApe 2016

What is Dashi?

The basis of miso soup, Algae Soup, and Pale Broth is humble dashi.

Dashi is a kind of savory broth unique to Japanese cuisine. It can be made from dried shiitake mushrooms, dried bonito flakes called katsuobushi, dried sardines called iriko or niboshi, or dried kelp called kombu. Often, dashi is made from a combination of these ingredients! 

Once made, either from scratch or using premade powders or packets, chefs and cooks use it in soups, simmered dishes, stews, hot pots, noodle dishes, sauces, or as seasoning in other recipes.

The dashi used in our Algae Soup and Pale Broth is made from just kombu. The kelp used to make kombu is a kind of algae, and so felt appropriate as the basis of these recipes. Kombu dashi on its own has a very interesting flavor: mineral and briny, like the ocean, but with none of the accompanying fishiness you find with seafood.

Before this gets brought up, yes, I know kombu is actually “brown algae,” not green or white. Let’s extend our imaginations for a hot minute, okay?

What is Miso?

Miso, at its most basic, is a fermented soybean paste. 

First mentioned in the Heian Period (794-1185 CE)–though it may be older than that, depending on different sources–it was originally part of the wages of nobles. It became more and more popular among farmers and merchants as soybean cultivation increased, and continued its trajectory through battlefields, urbanization, and modern manufacturing techniques to become a seminal part of Japanese cuisine.

All miso today still relies on a few ingredients: soybeans, koji, and salt. Koji is a kind of mold cultured on steamed grains, usually rice, barley, or more soybeans. The taste and appearance of miso can vary depending on the ratio of soybeans to koji, the type of soybeans and how they’re cooked, and whether or not the miso is stirred while it ferments.

White miso is the kind of miso we’ll use in both the Algae Soup and Pale Broth. It is lighter in color and sweeter and milder in flavor–thanks to the higher levels of koji-infused grains like rice or barley and a shorter fermentation time. Perfect for our purposes!

A delicate broth with a hint of sulfur.—Stardew Valley Pale Broth item description © ConcernedApe 2016

Algae Soup

But if we’re using white miso in Algae Soup, how do we make the soup green?

We’ll mix it with a little bit of matcha powder. The matcha powder provides color and a hint of bitter vegetal flavor to the soup. It’s balanced out by the sweet, buttery taste of wakame seaweed, which provides texture and more algae! With the crunch of the chopped scallion, it’s a healthy and invigorating way to start your day or enjoy as part of a light lunch.

Matcha has a pretty high caffeine count, so I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this for dinner unless you’re fine with staying up at night.

To save time, you can use powdered kombu dashi or a packet if you have them on hand. If you’re like me, and a nerd, and want to know what specific kind of kombu to use, I recommend using ma kombu. 

Ma kombu is great for dashi and lends a nice green tint to the soup.

Pale Broth

For Pale Broth, we want to keep the soup as light-colored as possible.

We’ll use the white miso as-is, to give the soup a beautiful color and sweet flavor. While the silken tofu isn’t necessary, it gives the broth a little more body and is a tribute to the classic combination of wakame seaweed and silken tofu in miso soup. Top it with chopped white parts of a scallion for crunch and the “hint of sulfur” from the game description, and you have an addictive dish you’ll want to slurp down day or night.

Between the two, this was my favorite.

I used rishiri kombu when I made the dashi for this soup. It makes a lovely clear broth and adds a nice pop of umami.

You can still use powdered kombu dashi or a packet to save time. This recipe is delicious either way!

Makes enough dashi for 4 bowls of soup.

A picture of two bowls of soup, surrounded by chopsticks and plates and bowls of other food at the edges. The soup in the left bowl is pale yellow, and the soup in the right bowl is a deep green.
Once you prepare the dashi, you can make either soup depending on your mood and taste!


For dashi:

⅓ ounce (10 grams) kombu [alternatively 4 inches x 4 inches or 10 cm x 10 cm]

4 cups of water

For 1 bowl Algae Soup:

1 tablespoon white miso

1 ½ teaspoons matcha powder

1 cup kombu dashi

1 ½ teaspoons dried wakame seaweed

Green end of 1 scallion, sliced, for garnish

For 1 bowl Pale Broth:

1 cup kombu dashi

1 tablespoon white miso

3 ounces silken tofu, cut into cubes (¼ shelf-stable 12-oz package)

White end of 1 scallion, sliced, for garnish


  1. For dashi, cut some slits into the kombu to help it release its flavor.
  2. Combine the kombu with the water in a bottle or jar and let steep at room temperature for 3-4 hours or overnight in the refrigerator. Remove the kombu and store dashi in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or the freezer for 3 months.
  3. Alternatively, combine the kombu and the water in a medium pot over the stove. If you have time, let it sit for 2-3 hours; otherwise turn the heat to medium low and cook until liquid just starts to simmer, about 10 minutes. Remove the kombu and store the dashi in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or the freezer for 3 months.
  4. To make a bowl of Algae Soup, mix together the white miso paste and matcha powder until a green paste forms. Rehydrate the wakame by following package instructions or adding wakame to a small bowl, covering with cold water, and letting sit for 5-10 minutes.
  5. Heat up the dashi in a small pot over medium heat until hot. Pour the dashi broth into the soup bowl.
  6. Put the matcha miso paste in a ladle or large spoon and partially lower it into the soup bowl. Use a small whisk to gently dissolve the paste into the warm broth until fully combined.
  7. Squeeze excess water from rehydrated wakame and add to the miso soup broth. Top with the thinly sliced green parts of a scallion. Serve immediately and warm.
  8. To make a bowl of Pale Broth, heat up the dashi in a small pot over medium heat until hot. Pour the dashi broth into the soup bowl.
  9. Put the miso paste in a ladle or large spoon and partially lower it into the soup bowl. Use a small whisk to gently dissolve the paste into the warm broth until fully combined.
  10. Add the silken tofu cubes to the bowl and top with the sliced white parts of a scallion. Serve immediately and warm.

There’s been quite a few disasters lately—some natural, some man-made—and one of the best things we can do to combat both the problem and our own sense of helplessness is to give aid.

If you’re interested in helping earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria, please consider donating to World Central Kitchen. They do remarkable work keeping people fed in disaster areas and war zones; as it says on their front page, “Food is a universal human right.”

For fellow Americans concerned about recent environmental disasters in areas like East Palestine, Ohio or Tucson, Arizona, I’ve been struggling to find trustworthy charities or fundraisers for residents there. If you know of any, please donate and/or share in the comments! If not, pressure your congresspeople or local politicians to hold railway and transportation companies like Norfolk Southern accountable for safety deregulation, poor working conditions, and loose environmental standards affecting both employees and residents.


About Miso | Food Culture | marukome. (n.d.). Marukome Co., Ltd.

Kondo, S. (1986). The Poetical Pursuit Of Food: Japanese Recipes for American Cooks. Clarkson N. Potter, Inc. Publisher.

N. (2023, February 15). Just One Cookbook · Japanese Food and Recipe Blog. Just One Cookbook. Retrieved February 15, 2023, from

Origin and history of miso|About Miso | Food Culture | marukome. (n.d.). Marukome Co., Ltd.

Tea, G. (n.d.). Matcha Miso Broth. Genuine Tea.

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