“As the days grow short, some faces grow long. But not mine. Every autumn, when the wind turns cold and darkness comes early, I am suddenly happy. It’s time to start making soup again.” ~Leslie Newman
Before I begin let me tell you that I am not claiming this as an authentic Japanese recipe. (So please my Japanese friends don’t take offense.) This udon soup was a result of cleaning out my pantry. It’s amazing how many half finished packets of dry foods can accumulate so quickly.
After spending almost an hour clearing out the pantry my stomach began grumbling. It’s cold outside and the only thing I’m craving lately is soup. So it was no hard decision selecting what our lunch would be. I had half a package of dry udon noodles, dried wakame, a few packets of Shimaya – Dashinomoto (soup stock), and red miso paste. In my head I immediately started craving a big bowl of udon from my favorite Japanese restaurant. Instead I had to settle for attempting to make my own udon and hoping it would be edible. I’m not very familiar with Japanese cuisine so I hope for the best. These udon noodles were also about half as thin as the ones from the restaurant. I’m not sure why, but they did taste exactly the same.
I try to keep it as simple as possible so as to avoid bad tasting food. In the end I winged it and the results were pretty darn good, if I do say so myself. You might have noticed the peas floating around the soup. Yes, they are a strange addition but I have a good excuse. Remember I was cleaning out the cupboard and refrigerator. I didn’t have other fresh vegetables to add to the soup but you could easily add anything you’d like. For example some Japanese mushroom, snow peas, tofu are any of your favorite vegetables.
- udon noodles
- 1 tbsp. red miso paste
- 2 small individual packs of Shimaya – Dashinomoto (soup stock), or other broth of choice
- 4 cups or 1 Lt. of water
- small handful dried cut wakame
- chile flakes, optional
- any vegetables of choice, thinly sliced or pre-cooked
- Soak the wakame in warm water and set aside. Follow the package instructions for udon noodles. Once boiled and drained, rinse in cold water and set aside.
- While the noodles are boiling begin simmering the broth. In a large pot combine the Shimaya – Dashinomoto (soup stock) and 3.5 cups of water, bring to a soft boil. Add any vegetables of choice and continue simmering. Combine the remaining water and miso paste until it breaks up completely. Once vegetables and noodles are cooked mix the miso into the pot, drain the wakame and add it to the pot as well. Next add the noodles, and give the pot a good stir. Before serving sprinkle in some chile flakes if using.
Even though it didn’t taste exactly like the udon soup from my favorite Japanese restaurant it was still delicious. On a cold rainy day a comforting soup like this one really hits the spot.
What is your favorite soup?
Need some soup or stew ideas? The following are some of my favorite soup and stews recipes from my archives. Enjoy!
- Smoked Chicken, Vegetable and Adzuki Soup
- Roasted Pumpkin and Patty Pan Stew
- Moravian Beans and Cornbread
- Baharat Spiced Beef Stew (A Wacky Stew)
- Red Chicken Pozole
- Goulashesque Chicken Stew
- Tomato Cream Soup
- Mediterranean-Asian Fish Stew
For great and authentic Japanese recipes visit my friend Nami at Just One Cookbook – Quick & Easy Japanese Home Cooking Recipes, http://justonecookbook.com/