Miso Hungry, Me Love You Fungi

In Japanese, Quick Meal, Seitan, Soup, Vegetables on November 3, 2011 at 9:24 pm

Today was a good day.  Healthy, productive, and economical.  I woke up early, rode the machine, ate a hearty whole grain breakfast, made and brought in coffee from home, had leftovers, and accomplished a lot of catching up at work.  Let me tell you, by the time I got home, I was HUNGRY.

Nick mentioned earlier this week he may be going out on a man-date with his friend John for steak tonight.  I waited in anticipation as the plans were solidified.  This meant a) I could make and eat whatever I want and b) I could watch as much reality TV as my yenta heart desired.

I had some seitan in the fridge that was closely approaching expiration, and I really wanted to use it.  For those of you who don’t know what that is, it is Satan’s hippie cousin.  It is a loaf made from wheat gluten and mixed with some spices and soy sauce.  It is often used (or a similar version of it) in vegetarian restaurants as a meat substitute.  It is very high in protein, and has a similar texture to chicken.  Nick hates it and refuses to eat it.  I love it because unfortunately I’ve developed an intolerance to tofu and other highly concentrated soy products, so it’s great when I get a lil sick of beans.

Since I was so hungry, I wanted to make something quick.  I decided on soup.  As I mentioned, soy is no longer my best friend.  As a result, I can’t even eat miso soup from a regular Japanese restaurant because they use traditional soy based miso.  One day, I was browsing the tofu/seitan section at the healthfood store,  sadly staring at all the amazing miso pastes.  And then, I found it!  Chick pea miso paste that is soy-free.

While serendipitously channel surfing and finding The Breakfast Club on cable, I gathered all the other ingredients to make my soup.  I love that Claire brought in sushi for lunch; it so matched my theme! Carrots, celery, scallions, broccoli, mushrooms, kale, and wakame flakes (dried seaweed used in miso soup) make the dish complete.

Now, I just want to preface the rest of this post with a note about my friend who gave me some constructive criticism today.  He said I need a) more sass and b) more pictures.  I hope you’ll be pleased with all the photographic inserts!

I first thinly sliced up the carrots, celery, and scallions.  Then, I cut up a few florets of broccoli.  Then I scrubbed the mushrooms with a wet paper towel and sliced them up.  The thinner the pieces are, the quicker they cook.




I brought 3 cups of water to a boil, then added all these ingredients.  Then I sliced up some seitan, adding it to the pot, plus 1/2 tsp wakame flakes.





Once that came to a boil, I took out a couple of teaspoons of the broth to mix with the miso paste.  Then I reduced the heat, covered, and let simmer for 5ish minutes.  During that time, I chopped a kale leaf very tiny, and then I mixed the miso paste with the water until it was creamy.





Now for the magic….I added in the dissolved miso, sprinkled in and kale, and let it sit one minute.  During the cooking time, the wakame became HUGE.  It reminds me of those toys you’d soak in water and they’d became real sized toys.  Only you can actually eat these treats!  I should have put them side by side so you could see the difference.





I spooned in half of my soup, and watched some brat packers get high and say cliche 80s verbiage.  I watched them dance, and admired their shoes.  I love how all that fashion is back in effect.  I looked down at my empty bowl, hearing the words of Simple Minds – “Don’t you forget about me[so]”.  This reminded me of the other half of the soup I made, which prompted me for a refill.

One more dinner left until this challenge is over.  May the Schwartz be with me!

  1. Chick pea miso?! Amazing! I can’t wait to try this!

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