Meatless Monday: Japanese-influenced Miso Soup - Our Daily Green

Monday, March 11, 2013

Meatless Monday: Japanese-influenced Miso Soup

We haven't done one of these in a while, but for the past several weeks, my oldest mini green family member has given up meat for Lent. It's been a great opportunity for me to experiment with new recipes. I am the sort of parent who thinks giving up meat should mean more than eating your pasta without meatballs, or just skipping the main dish and carb loading. While we frequently have meatless meals, we were in a bit of a rut.

I've been wanting to do a bit more vegan cooking. A few months ago, I read a recipe for a "Mock Mac'n'Cheese" that I have just not quite gotten around to trying. Meanwhile the miso that I purchased for that recipe has languished in the pantry, waiting for me to use it.

There was a recipe on the package for a miso soup that included two ingredients I have not been able to find in my local stores. (wakame/seaweed and dashi stock/Japanese soup stock). Granted, I could order them online, but I tend to do that only with tried and true ingredients, as the shipping tends to work in favor of bulk purchasing, not small amounts.

I looked at the ingredients I did have, and turned to my favorite internet trick, putting them in a search engine to see what recipes were available online.

I found a delicious one that I adapted from King County Health Services in Seattle, WA. The ingredients are readily found in a mainstream grocery stores and the flavor is outstanding. I doubled the amounts of tofu as well as ginger and garlic to make the soup a bit heartier and more flavorful.

Fresh Ginger
Photo from: Wikimedia Commons
One of my favorite tips for using fresh ginger is to store the root in the freezer, unpeeled. There is no need to peel the ginger when grating it and since it's frozen, it grates easily. Ginger contains essential fatty acids, phytochemicals, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, numerous B-vitamins and zinc, so the more opportunities to use it in cooking, the greater the health benefits.

Without further ado, here is the Miso Soup recipe... it's absolutely delicious!

Miso Soup with Tofu and Green Onions

Miso Soup
Photo taken for: Our Daily Green
Ingredients:

  • 5 cups low sodium vegetable broth 
  • 2 green onions, finely sliced
  • 4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger root 
  • 2 clove garlic, thinly sliced 
  • 3 tablespoons light-colored miso paste (found in the ethnic food section of the grocery store or Asian food market) 
  • 1 package firm tofu, drained and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Directions:

(this is so simple it's unreal).
Mix all ingredients together and simmer for 20 minutes.
Garnish with fresh sliced green onions.




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