Miso Soup for the Soul

A hot comforting soup on a chilly, rainy evening is always the way to go to complement your dinner.  And the other night, we had our favorite Japanese broth -- miso soup.

I mentioned in earlier posts when we dined at Kyoto Jack and Sugi, that my son loves miso soup. And whenever we order bento meals, he always gets the accompanying soup, or hubby just makes an extra order especially for him. Most find it odd for a 5-y.o. boy to really like miso soup, and my mom was one of those pleasantly surprised by this. So when she knew about this, she prepared the soup during one of our regular Sunday lunches at their place.  She even showed me the instant miso pack she bought and the other ingredients that go with the soup, so I can buy them and have the soup anytime at home. It's very simple and cooks in no time.  That's something I, even you, can definitely do!

On the list are:  the nori -- toasted seaweed sheets, miso paste, and tofu. Spring onions and kombu (dried kelp) are optional.  There is quite a selection of nori at the grocery so get what you like, just read the labels and description since there are varieties which are flavored or seasoned. The one I got did not indicate either.

I found only one brand of miso paste in Unimart, pricey but well worth it at P181.50 for a tub. Though different from what my mom bought, this one tastes so much better :-)

Miso, as described on the label, is made of 'fermented paste of soybeans and rice, with salt'.  This brand is also seasoned with bonito fish and seaweeds.  I know that bonito flakes make the base of basic Japanese soup stock or dashi. And this tub is blended with it so I guess that's why this brand is really flavorful and tastes 'authentic', as good as the ones we order from Japanese restaurants -- even better than some I've tried! You can read the contents on the label above.

This is the tofu I always buy, 'coz it's the only one I know, and the only one I ever tried since this is what my mom use to make her fried breaded tofu.  As directed on the pack, cut this across, piercing through the plastic wrap, then slowly squeeze out, slice, and dice, ever so gently.  Tofu is so delicate you know. For this batch, I just used half.

Cut some strips of nori, save some for later (and chomping a few as you cook, yum!) .  Then boil approximately 1 liter of water in a saucepan, cover.  As soon as the water bubbles, scoop 2 to 2 1/2 tablespoons of miso paste into the boiling water and mix until well dissolved.


Drop some diced tofu and a few strips of nori.  Simmer for a minute. Serve hot. Top with more strips of nori, and garnish with chopped spring onion if desired.  This simple, savory soup serves 4.

I'm sharing with you a recently discovered site, Sense and Serendipity, where I found not only some hearty soups, but many healthy, inspiring dishes as well.

So, what's your comfort soup?

Related post:
Try my Roasted Butternut Squash & Carrot soup too!