We are not all about diets, January is over after all. However, a plethora of children’s birthday parties has led to an above average production and consumption of cakes and chocolate chip cookies. So weekdays have been a time to reset and readjust, and this recipe will do just that with lashings of flavour.
Miso is a fermented paste produced from soybeans, rice, barley (or other grains), and is used to make soup and stocks in Japanese cuisine. There is a big trend for fermented foods, with their potential natural probiotic effects. I am not sure any prebiotic bacteria is likely to survive the hot temperatures of a miso soup, but the fermentation certainly gives a complex umami flavour base to enhance any dish.
Another idea inspired by one of my favourite food magazines, Bon Appetit. This guilt free soup can be prepped ahead of time, making a portable lunch option. Steamed vegetables bulk out the simple miso broth- chop your choice of veggies- we used asparagus and cabbage. Some silken tofu for protein (sub for chicken if you prefer), and then garnish – some spring onion (scallions), and furikake – a Japanese dry seasoning comprised of toasted white sesame seeds, black sesame seeds, salt and nori flakes that is normally used on rice. We bought ours from a health food shop but it is just as easy to mix your own (all the components are easily sourced from major supermarkets).
If you need more sustenance (this is a bit of a temple soup, for days requiring culinary penance), add some noodles, udon would work well or you could even try bean sprout noodles (source from an ethnic food shop) for a lighter and grain free alternative.
- 10 asparagus spears
- A quarter wedge of cabbage
- 100g silken tofu
- Optional - 400g cooked udon noodles
- 1 scallion (spring onion) shopped finely
- 2 teaspoons furikake
- 1 tablespoon brown miso paste
- 2 cups of boiling hot water
- Trim the woody ends off the asparagus stalks and shred the cabbage.
- Steam the vegetables for a couple of minutes.
- Chill them in a bowl of ice cold water, then drain and reserve.
- Chop the tofu.
- Place the noodles if using in the base of the bowl, top with noodles , the vegetables and scallions (spring onion).
- Dissolve the miso in boiling water and pour this over the remaining ingredients.
- Garnish with the furikake.
Adding this soup to Vanesther’s Spice Trail linky
As an aside, we are writing occasional recipes for Great British Chefs, and a recent one was this dessert idea for poached quince with a quinoa, oat and pistachio crumble. Check it out before quinces run out of season (or sub with apple/pear).
So do check out our recipes over on the GB chefs blog and let us know if you have any other ideas for guilt free meals to recover after indulgent weekends.