Soba Noodle Soup
I apologize for not posting a recipe sooner. I’ve practically been out of commission due to a cold in which I’m still battling with. My meals have basically consisted of soup, tea, and cough medicine. Very nutritious and hearty. Now that I’m feeling a tad better, I can go back to eating solid food again. But I can always go for a bowl of hot soup every once in a while. And that is exactly what I did last night. My throat was still scratchy and I needed something to ease it. And guess what? I’ve finally found soba noodles this time! I’ve been meaning to make this soup for a while but couldn’t find the ingredients to make it with until now.
If I haven’t explained to you what soba noodles are, they are thin brownish gray noodles made from buckwheat. They are enormously popular in Japan where they are prepared all year round. On hot summer days, the noodles are eaten cold, arranged on a bamboo lattice rack with dipping sauce, while on chilly winter days, the noodles are immersed in piping-hot broth. Soba noodles are available fresh and dried in Japanese markets; the dried variety may also be found in the ethnic aisle of well-stocked supermarkets or local health food stores.
Some of you have seen various recipes for soba noodle soup. I am going to provide you with a vegetarian version using only vegetables and vegetable broth. You can use chicken broth or fish stock. Throw in some pieces of chicken, beef, fish, or shrimp as you prefer. You can even add some miso or tofu. The choice is yours. Either additional ingredients would compliment the flavors of this soup. When making this soup, the soba noodles should be cooked separately. As you may already know, leaving pasta in hot water for a long period of time will turn mushy.
For this recipe, you will need:
- 1/2 lbs of dried soba noodles
- 2 teaspoons of sesame oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
- 2 red bell peppers chopped
- 1 cup of corn
- 1 cup of chopped celery
- 1 cup of sliced mushrooms
- 2 cup of shredded bok choy
- 1 cup of sliced green onions
- 2 tablespoons of low sodium soy sauce
- 6 cups of vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon of lime juice
- Salt and pepper for taste
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil over high heat. Add the noodles and cook until just tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Heat the oil in a stock pot over medium heat. Add onions and saute till translucent. Add garlic and ginger and cook for a minute or 2 stirring constantly. Add in the vegetables. Season with a bit of salt and pepper. Stir for 10 minutes or until vegetables are soft and tender. Add soy sauce and stir for 2 minutes. Then pour in broth and bring to a boil. Low the flame and let the soup simmer covered for 15-20 minutes. Stir in green onions. Remove from heat and stir in lime juice.
Using tongs, divide the noodles evenly among warmed bowls and then ladle in the soup. Serve immediately.
Yields 4 to 6 servings