It’s not the prettiest soup, but it is loaded with flavor. I omitted the traditional tofu (and pork) and then added cabbage, carrots, and bamboo shoots to this vegetarian version of Hot and Sour Soup. It’s a delicious and filling soup and it only comes in at around 59 calories per 1 cup serving.
Dried shiitake mushrooms and black fungus are some of my favorite ingredients found in an Asian market. They are essential for this soup. Yet another reason to visit an Asian market. Go.
Vegetarian Hot and Sour Soup
6 dried shiitake mushrooms
handful of dried black fungus (also know as wood ear mushrooms)
3 cups hot water
8 cups vegetable broth
2 cups thinly shredded cabbage (green, Savoy, or Napa)
1 carrot, peeled and julienned
1/2 5 ounce can bamboo shoots, drained and julienned
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/2-inch piece ginger, peeled and finely minced
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons Chinese cooking wine
1 teaspoon sambal olek or sriracha
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 6 tablespoons water
2 eggs, lightly beaten
In separate bowls, soak the dried shiitake mushrooms in 2 cups of hot water and the dried black fungus in 1 cup of hot water until soft, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the stems from the shiitakes and discard. Slice the rehydrated mushrooms thinly and return to the soaking liquid. Set aside. Thinly slice the rehydrated black fungus. I find it easier to stack a few pieces, roll them up, and then slice with a very sharp knife. Add the sliced shiitakes and their soaking liquid, as well as the sliced black fungus to a soup pot. Discard the black fungus soaking liquid.
Add the vegetable broth to the soup pot and heat over medium-high heat. Add the shredded cabbage, julienned carrot and bamboo shoots, minced garlic and ginger, soy sauce, rice vinegar, Chinese cooking wine, sambal olek (or sriracha), sesame oil, salt and black pepper. Bring to a boil and cook until the cabbage is tender, 10 minutes.
Stir in the cornstarch/water slurry and cook until the soup slightly thickens, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and then slowly add the beaten eggs in a thin stream while stirring the soup. Serve immediately.
This is one of my favorite soups. I make it often. If I happen to have some poblanos in the fridge, I will chop one up and add it to this soup to kick up the spice level a bit.
Kale and Posole Soup
1 tablespoon oil (I use canola mostly)
1 medium onion, chopped
6 medium cloves garlic, minced
8 – 10 cups vegetable broth
1 bunch kale, cleaned, ribs removed, and chopped
1 jalapeno, stem and seeds removed and minced
1 15.5 ounce can hominy, drained
1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes and their juices
1 medium zucchini, diced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
Heat the oil in a soup pot. Sauté the onion over medium heat until soft, add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute. Add remaining ingredients, except the zucchini and cilantro. Bring the soup to a boil on high heat. Once it comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes, uncovered. Add the zucchini ands simmer another 5 minutes. Add the cilantro and season the soup to taste with salt and pepper.
Earlier this year, I revamped one of my favorite Thai soups to make it vegetarian, as well as acceptable for the low iodine diet I was on at the time. I was super happy with the way the soup turned out. It was delicious! So flavorful.
I replaced the traditional fish sauce with a Umami Sauce I made. I typically use my favorite Madras curry powder in this recipe, but I included a recipe for a Madras-style curry powder at the bottom of the recipe anyway. I have a big collection of spices, but I realize not everyone does, so feel free to replace the Madras curry powder with any store-bought Indian curry powder. For the noodles you can use linguine (or spaghetti) or rice noodles.
I contacted Thai Kitchen via their Facebook page and asked about the type of salt they use in their products. Turns out they do not use iodized salt. This opens a world of possibilities for those on a low iodine diet. The Thai Kitchen red curry paste should not be hard to find. Look in the ethnic section of your grocery store. I actually bought a jar at Target.
Chiang Mai Curry Noodle Soup with Vegetables
1/2 lb. linguine, cooked
1 tsp. vegetable oil
1 – 3 tsp. Thai Kitchen red curry paste (to taste)
1 T. Madras curry powder (recipe follows)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 can (13.5 oz.) unsweetened coconut milk
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock (unsalted or homemade for LID)
3 tablespoons Umami Sauce
1 tsp. sugar
1/8 head green cabbage, cored and shredded
4 ounces sugar snap peas, strings removed and halved (you can use snow peas instead)
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced (or use the mushrooms left over from making the Umami Sauce)
1/2 to 1 12 ounce (approximately) can baby corn, drained
1 cup fresh spinach, torn
Kosher salt, to taste
fresh cilantro leaves
unsalted peanuts, crushed
limes, cut into wedges
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add shredded cabbage and cook until just tender. Add the red curry paste, curry powder, and cumin and cook, stirring, until fragrant (about 40 seconds). Whisk in coconut milk and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, add Umami Sauce and sugar, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Stir in sugar snap peas, mushrooms, and baby corn and simmer until all the veggies are tender, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with kosher salt. Stir in torn spinach and take off the heat.
Divide noodles in soup bowls, ladle soup into bowls, and top with fresh cilantro leaves and crushed unsalted peanuts. Serve with a wedge of lime.
Quick and Easy Salt-Free Madras Curry Powder
3 tablespoons ground turmeric
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cardamom
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Combine all of the spices and store in a glass Mason jar.
We are three weeks into the new CSA season and I’m so happy to be getting the box of fresh produce each week again. I’ve been so busy I haven’t had time to blog about what I’ve been cooking with the wonderful vegetables (and strawberries) from Pinckney’s Produce.
For lunch today, I made this easy Portuguese-inspired soup using collards from my CSA box. The simple combination of ingredients made for a very flavorful soup.
Collards and Chickpeas Soup with Sausage
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 large potatoes (Russet are good), peeled and diced
1 15.5 ounce can chickpeas, drained
8 cups chicken broth
1 bunch collards, center stem removed and then thinly sliced
8 ounces fully cooked sausage link, sliced (I used Eckrich Smoked Sausage)
1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes
salt and black pepper, to taste
Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and cook until tender. Add the minced garlic and cook a minute more. Add the remaining ingredients, increase the heat, and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat slightly and simmer until the potatoes are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
This is another one of my favorite soups. It is loaded with vegetables. The way I make it is more like a stew than a soup, more veggies than broth. Adjust the amount of broth to your liking. This soup is also nice with a little pasta (like ditalini, pastina, or acini di pepe) added around the same time as the zucchini. If you add pasta, you don’t necessarily need the bread, but the soup-soaked bread is pretty fantastic.
This recipes makes a lot of soup, so you will have plenty of leftovers. It’s great to have on hand for a quick lunch or as a nutritious and filling start of a meal. It keeps for a week in the fridge and freezes well.
Ribollita (Italian Vegetable Soup with Bread)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and diced
3 stalks celery, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 – 10 cups vegetable broth
1 14.5 can of diced tomatoes & their juices
2 large potatoes, peeled and diced (I use Russet)
1 15.5 ounce can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 head green cabbage (or savoy), cored and thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 zucchini, diced
kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
Italian bread, sliced
Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and cook until soft. Add the garlic and cook a minute more.
Add the broth, tomatoes, potatoes, beans, cabbage, thyme, and basil to the soup pot. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat slightly and simmer 15 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook until the zucchini is tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Season to taste with kosher salt and black pepper.
To serve, place a slice of Italian bread in a bowl and ladle soup over bread.
I started on my low iodine diet (LID) today to prepare my body to go radioactive in two weeks. I will be on the diet for 16 days. During that time I cannot eat iodized or sea salt, dairy products, soy products, seafood, sea products, potato skins, whole eggs, red dyes, or anything with any of those ingredients in it. I am limited to 5 – 6 ounces of fresh meat and 4 servings of grains a day. I can go off the diet once I have my nuclear whole body scan on March 20th.
I had to do LID around this time last year. By the end of those 16 days I was pretty miserable, more psychologically than anything. I think I am better prepared this time.
I made this soup for lunch today. I used no salt added tomatoes and homemade stock to comply with the rules of LID.
Cajun Okra Soup
2 tablespoons oil
1 large onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1 14. 5 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 pound bag frozen sliced okra
1 zucchini, diced
6 cups vegetable broth
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/8 cayenne pepper (or to taste)
salt and pepper, to taste
cooked rice to serve (optional)
Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, and bell pepper. Cook until the vegetables are tender. Add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil and cook until the okra and zucchini are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve with hot rice and hot sauce.
For LID: use no salt added diced tomatoes and use unsalted or homemade vegetable or chicken broth. Don’t use hot sauce (unless you know it is LID-friendly).
Like much of the rest of the country, South Carolina is experiencing super cold temperatures. When I took my youngest son to school yesterday morning it was 16 degrees and with the wind chill it felt like 2 degrees. So cold. Upon returning home, I needed to warm up so I made this thick, hot chowder. It’s warming, delicious, and visually pleasing. I love the colors of the corn and broccoli in the creamy white. Oh, and it has bacon in it.
Corn and Broccoli Chowder with Bacon
4 slices bacon, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1/4 cup flour
5 cups chicken broth
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 head of broccoli, cut into bite-size florets (save the stalk for another use)
2 cups frozen corn
1 cup milk or half and half
In a soup pot over medium-low heat, fry the diced bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pot using a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Increase the heat slightly and cook the diced onion in the bacon fat until it softens. Add the flour, and cook, stirring constantly for about 30 seconds. Whisk in the chicken broth, a little at a time, taking care to whisk out the flour lumps. Add the diced potatoes and bring to a boil. Cook until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the broccoli and cook until tender (but not mushy), about another 10 minutes. Add the corn and milk (or half and half) and heat through. Season the chowder with salt and pepper and serve in bowls with the crisp bacon crumbled on top.