It mush been ages ago when I opened and browsed through a cook book mainly because Pinterest, I mean there is almost nothing you can not find there. It sometimes brings me down a bit, like when I thought I come up with some original idea and then only to realise that people are already writing articles about it on Pinterest, but that also proves that Pinterest is such a great data base and searching engine that we basically don’t need things like cookbooks anymore. So I though! Until a few days ago I was listening to a Swedish podcast talked about Viktoria Beckhem and I saw that she recommended a cookbook called Eat Beautiful : Nourish your skin from the inside out by Wendy Rowe on instagram, and I just had to get it for myself for Valentine’s day. I simply cannot thank myself enough for this decision because the recipes are absolutely fabulous. I must admit that I never expected a makeup artist could have come up with such amazing cookbook contents, as I always assumed that they need to travel around constantly, lots of parties and alcohol etc and their schedule seems way to irregular to cook homemade meal, and how wrong could I be? I already tried some of the great recipes last week loved it a lot, and my boyfriend actually told me that my skin is looking better. Isn’t that magical!
And this weekend we are making the Japanese Miso soup. According to the book, or just common sense, Miso is widely used in Asia countries for centuries. For some reason I never ever had miso soup until I moved to Sweden and started to experiment with cooking, and I was utterly annoyed that no one ever make me try this before. If you never had miso before, I strongly recommend you try it because it has an unique and heavenly flavour, which comes from the fermented soybeans. It doesn’t have the almost “greasy” or sharp character soy sauce sometimes has, instead it has a hint of floral aroma, as in honey or pollen. My boyfriend, who never had any interest in asian food whatsoever, fell in love with miso soup from the first try, and he thinks it has some similar flavour as beer, which is also fermented.
If you are thinking to try making Miso soup at home, do not buy the instant paste or powder since the highly processed product does not contain the health benefits as the real stuff does. It is also known that many sushi restaurants use the cheaper miso to make their soup which basically is lots of added flavouring and taste nothing like homemade one. So what I do is to go to the local asian market and find a good quality kind of miso paste, I personally prefer the ones with bits of crushed soybeans in it. Since miso contains a large amount of good bacteria for the guts, it will keep the skin clear as a consequence, and it also helps to strengthen the immune system and it is just what I need in the cold days in late winter.
The miso soup is the first winter recipe featured in the book is very simple to make, it is a perfect appetizer or side dish to any East Asian food. But sometimes it might be a bit too little to serve for dinner by itself, like this Saturday and we only had brunch and wanted something bigger then just soup for dinner. That’s why I added some rice noodle in the miso soup and grilled some king oyster mushroom with asian spice as a side dish. The combination is divine! It was an extremely satisfying dinner and we will for sure make it more often in the future, like in a chilly rainy day. After all, we live in the part of the world with unfortunate weather, and by chilly rainy day I actually mean stormy rainy and/or icy windy day, even during summer, but usually there will be sunshine and rainbow afterwards. That’s why miso soup is going to become a staple food at our house since we will crave its warmth and coziness all year round.
Here is how to make:
Slice the king oyster mushrooms lengthwise, as thin as possible. let it sit in the marinate while preparing the noodle soup.
Meanwhile, heat up water in a big saucepan and cook the rice noodle as instructed. Drain the noodle and let cool with a strainer. Heat up 1L of water in the sauce pan and dissolve the miso. Do not let boil as it will kill the good bacteria in it. Add the silken tofu cubes and stir gently. Add the wakame and let it soak in the liquid. When the wakame becomes soft and tender, transfer carefully into a ramen bowl together with rice noodle and add the toppings.
Heat up the grill or frying pan to medium high heat and put in the mushroom slices. Turn them when the bottom side becomes golden and crispy. When both sides are golden, sprinkle some salt and Japanese chilli pepper. Serve together with the miso noodle soup. Enjoy!
As I’m writing this post, I was doing some research about asian cuisine and healthy benefits from food culture. I’m feeling more inspired than ever to see that people are discovering traditional ingredients and remedies that feed and nourish the human body from all parts of the world.
From fermented soy beans and artisan sourdough, I can’t help to wonder how did these genius people come up with such ideas? Did they discover it by accident and mistakes, or just out of desperation for something to feed on with limited ingredients? Right now I’m absolutely fascinated by these traditional, wholesome food that we human created hundreds of years ago, and plants and animals which evolved together with us. Here I am in a typical misty and groomy Sunday in northern Europe, discovering and experimenting with a traditional food created in part of the world where I originally came from. There is so much to learn about the modern world food culture, and not just for the sake of our health, but also for all creatures that share this magnificent planet with us.
Have you ever discovered any genre of food that you did not grow up with? Did you like it or did id not end up very well? Is there any food you would recommend me to try? please share your experience with me, I would love to hear more!