Curry Nanban vs Curry Udon: What is the Difference?

“Kamo Nanban (鴨南蛮)” is a seasonal soba dish enjoyed during the cold winter in Japan.

It is a buckwheat noodle served in a soy sauce-based dashi-rich broth whose main toppings are pieces of green onions and sliced duck meat.

Speaking of Kamo Nanban, “Curry Nanban (カレー南蛮)” was created in the late Meiji period (Meiji: 1868 to 1912)

by combining Western curry with Kamo Nanban, the noodle soup loved by people at the time.

Curry Nanban (カレー南蛮)

Kamo Nanban (鴨南蛮)Kamo Nanban

Curry Nanban originally consists of a bowl of soba topped with curry sauce, garnished with pieces of green onions and duck meat slices, becoming popular today.

Therefore, in recent years, many soba restaurants offer Curry Nanban, and some serve it with udon noodles. Besides, the dish may use chicken instead of duck.

Curry Nanban vs. Curry Udon

Curry Nanban (カレー南蛮)Curry Nanban

For that reason, many Japanese people don’t know how Curry Nanban differs from Curry Udon, an udon noodle soup topped with curry sauce. 

Nanban (南蛮)” in the name of Curry Nanban (and other Japanese noodle soups) actually stands for green onions. So unlike Curry Udon, the dish is definitely garnished with them. 

By the way, I have never heard Curry Nanban called “Curry Soba” even though it is literally a bowl of curry soba.

(Reference Pages: Wikipedia 鴨南蛮, 杉本商店 )


Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

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