Miso soup is one of those comfort foods that seems to make everything all right whether your day didn’t go quite right or the weather is less than perfect outside. Nonetheless, I hope this “suped up” version of a classic Japanese restaurant starter becomes a fixture in your recipe book for a quick all in one meal or a starter for your next family dinner.
If the voice behind the words seems a little different, then you’ve probably have figured out that “the other half” of Kitchen Runway is behind the keyboard today to share a little different point of view on some of our favorite recipes. This is a quick and easy recipe that takes a basic Asian ingredient like tofu and add some other new and wonderful accompaniments to it such as wakame and kamaboko. Wakame is a dried seaweed that doesn’t look like much when its in its dry form, but comes to life instantly once it hits the water. Kamaboko is a Japanese fish cake that is bright pink and white and really is subtle and mild in flavor. It tastes similar to the imitation crab that is in most California rolls at the sushi restaurants.
You’ll find that this isn’t your average restaurant miso soup and that it will be quite heartier along with a deeper flavor. The color of the bright pink Kamaboko is a beautiful contrast to the rest of the soup. We like to add steamed rice to the soup which turns it into a complete meal for us.
Prep: 5 mins Cooking time: 15 mins Serves 6 to 8
8 Cups Water
2 tsp. Hondashi (Japanese Bonito Fish Soup base)
1 Block of Soft (Silken) Tofu (14 oz. container), cubed
3 oz. Block of Kamaboko (Fish Cake), sliced
6 Tbsp. Miso Paste (choose your favorite brand – I like the ones that have dashi added in it)
½ Cup of Wakame (Dried seaweed)
1 green onion, thinly sliced
Substitute 1 cup of fresh spinach for the wakame
*If you want to make this into a Vegetarian Dish, you can find mushroom based dashi (soup base) at the Japanese store. You will also omit the Kamaboko and can buy a miso paste that does not contain dashi. Presto – Vegetarian Miso Soup
Add water and hondashi to medium size pot and bring to a boil. Once it comes to a boil, reduce to a simmer and add the tofu, kamaboko, and wakame to the soup base.
Next add the paste to the soup base by dissolving it Tbsp by Tbsp using two spoons. Place the miso paste on a large cooking spoon, using a regular spoon to pressand stir the miso paste into the soup little by little as pictured. I would highly recommend tasting as you go since the flavors and potency of the miso paste vary greatly from brand to brand. Don’t worry if the soup base seems to turn cloudy and separates as it cools, as this is normal.
Serve as is or with rice. Garnish with green onions if you like.