How To Skim Off the Scum and Fat from Soups and Stocks

Course: How to
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: japanese cooking, stock

In Japanese cooking, skimming off the scum and fat that accumulates on the surface of the stoup/stock is very important to create a nice and clean soup/stock.  Yes, I know it is extra work, but it’s also the key for the “refined” taste and it is required to keep the liquid clear.



  • water


  1. Gather the equipment you will need.

  2. When the soup/stock is about to boil, stay around the kitchen. You start to see the scum and fat floating and creating forms. With the mesh sieve in one hand and the other hand with the bowl of water, start scooping it off.
  3. After you pick up the scum, rinse the sieve in the bowl and continue to scoop the scum.
  4. Keep the liquid at a simmer rather than a hard boil because it will mix up the scum and cloud the soup. Make sure to thoroughly skim.

Recipe Notes

Equipment you will need:


Recipe by Namiko Chen of Just One Cookbook. All images and content on this site are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission. If you’d like to share this recipe on your site, please re-write the recipe in your own words and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.