Friday, March 20, 2015

10 Minute Late-Night Soup

The best part about this heart-warming soup is how quickly it comes together. I walked in the door from a back-to-back day of school, meetings, and work at 9pm the other night. This is a perfect dish for late dinners because it's done before you can justify diving into junk-food, satisfies hunger, but doesn't leave you too full before bed. A big salad is my traditional go-to, but the knob of ginger sitting in my "roots n' shoots" basket was speaking to me. While a lot of soups start with a browning of onions, garlic, and vegetables, I find this step unnecessary for many Asian broths. This soup is meant to be fast, light, and zingy in flavour.

Bring a soup pot with 2 cups of water to a boil and add any amounts (to your liking) of the following: grated ginger, soy sauce, cilantro, lime juice and zest, galangal, minced garlic, green onion, fish sauce, rice wine vinegar. A drop of stevia is really nice as well. Try to balance the salty, sweet, sour, and umami notes. Using a microplane for the ginger, zest, garlic, etc., will make quick work of flavouring the water. After five minutes you'll have a cheater's version of broth. No oil required! Drop in chopped asian greens or kale, cubed tofu, and frozen peas. Cook a minute or two until tender, and remove from the heat. Toss in rice noodles and more chopped cilantro. Cover pot and let stand until the noodles are al-dente. Spoon into bowl and enjoy. If you really miss the fat component to the soup, add in a tablespoon of coconut oil to the broth. It will make charming little circles on the surface of the liquid, resembling a chicken soup.

As an alternative to the tofu, you can crack an egg into the broth and whisk rapidly until you achieve an "egg drop" soup. Make this the last step though, so as not to overcook the egg.

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