Vegan mushroom miso soup with udon noodles


First published in 2019
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The joy of a good mushroom broth is two-fold as summer departs – not only does it warm the belly as you slurp it down, the bowl also warms the hands as you eat.

That does depend of course that the bowl is in your hands in the first place. Our treatment of soup is one of the best examples of the difference between European and Asian food cultures – whilst we eat ours delicately and quietly with a spoon, ramen is slurped vigorously in Asia. The beauty of this broth relies on the latter – stuff some noodles into your mouth, then take a slurp of the broth and enjoy.




Mushroom broth


Put the dried mushrooms, spring onions, garlic, fresh ginger, kombu and water into a large pan and bring to the boil. Add a good pinch of salt, reduce to a very gentle simmer and cook for an hour
Trim the mushrooms and add the excess trim to your mushroom broth. Reserve the trimmed mushrooms for later
Once the broth has been cooking for an hour, strain through a fine sieve and dicard the solids. Strain again through a muslin to remove any grit – you should be left with a clear, intense mushroom broth
Pour a little of the broth into a bowl and mix in the miso, soy sauce, mirin and rice vinegar, then pour the mixture back into the broth (this helps to avoid lumps of miso in your soup). Taste and season the broth until you're happy with it
Bring the broth back to a simmer, then add the udon noodles and baby pak choi. Simmer gently for two minutes
Meanwhile, cook the trimmed mushrooms. Place a frying pan over a high heat, add a dash of oil and then the mushrooms. Stir-fry for a couple of minutes, allowing the mushrooms to soften and take on a bit of colour, then add to the broth
Ladle the broth into bowls with some of the noodles, pak choi and mushrooms. Finish with a dash of sesame oil and a couple of nori sheets
First published in 2019
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