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Immune Soup

 

An ultra-fast recipe that takes 15 minutes or less that can be adjusted as needed to become a filling soba or ramen- style meal, or be enjoyed as a lighter soup. It’s a staple at my house, and I love the endless possibilities it offers. Adjust the recipe as desired, and incorporate the season’s best fresh veggies into the soup. This soup hits the spot as far as providing immune-boosting benefits as well as probiotics that aid digestion and nutrient absorption.

IMMUNE SOUP
by Daniela Cubelic | Tea Master + Founder, SILK ROAD

INGREDIENTS (serves 4)

2 tsp. Hoji-cha Tea (roasted Japanese green tea)
2 tsp. Winter Warrior Tea
1 tsp. fresh grated Ginger
6 cups Water (set aside 2 cups for tea brewing, 1 cup for wakame soaking & 3 cups adding to the soup)
2 pieces Wakame (Dry Seaweed)
2 springs of Green Onions
1 grated Carrot (grate with a peeler so the pieces are larger)
2-3 tbsp good quality Miso Paste (look for it in the refrigerated section of the grocery store)
4- 6 oz Seasonal Veggies: buy what’s fresh and in season. Quick cooking greens are ideal for this soup and don’t overcook them. If it’s a vegetable that takes a bit longer to cook, slice it into much smaller pieces so that the cooking time is shorter. Any of these veggies work beautifully in this dish: snow peas, peas, pea shoots, spinach, bok choy, sui choi, gai lan, broccoli, thinly sliced red or green cabbage and kale

Optional Noodles: Soba, Rice, Ramen or other noodles. If adding noodles, pre-cook them separately while the soup is cooking, strain and place in bowls immediately before serving, and before adding the soup to the bowl. Ladle the soup over the noodles.

Garnishes: Add some plant-based protein and healthy fats to this soup by garnishing with nuts, immediately before serving. Cashews, pecans, pumpkin and sunflower seeds or peanuts are all excellent choices.  Use one type or a mix of several. Also feel free to add a few sprigs of fresh green onion, cilantro or parsley as a garnish.

DIRECTIONS

1. Place both types of loose tea in teapot. Bring 2 cups water to just before the boil. Pour over tea. Steep 5 minutes.

2. Rinse wakame under running water. Place in 1 cup warm water for 5-10 minutes until it is soft. Remove the wakame, squeeze to remove excess water and slice it into 1-2 inch pieces. Retain the leftover wakame water – it contains lots of beneficial nutrients and adds a delicious flavor to the soup – add it to the soup pot.

3. Grate ginger and add to the soup pot. Strain the tea into the pot. Now add the remaining 3 cups of water and carrot. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil. Add all the veggies*, turn the heat to medium and cover with a lid while the veggies cook. Don’t overcook the greens– they should retain a bright colour and still be crispy.

4. Turn the heat off and let the soup cool slightly. Stir in miso and green onion immediately before serving. Start with 1 tbsp of miso and once it has been stirred in, taste it. Miso can be quite salty and the flavor can vary depending on the brand. Keep adding miso, 1 tbsp at a time, until it reaches the flavour you like. Miso contains natural probiotic cultures so it shouldn’t be overheated – never add it when the soup is boiling.

TIPS

  • To cut wakame, use a sharp knife or kitchen scissors.
  • If combining vegetables with drastically different cooking times, stagger the addition of the veggies so the slowest cooking veggies are added first and left to cook for a few minutes before adding the other veggies. Tender young greens such as spinach require almost no cooking time and can be cooked for about 30 seconds.
  • If you’re making a batch of this soup in advance to eat later, don’t add the miso, noodles or the veggies. When re-heating the soup add the fresh veggies until they are cooked, and the miso immediately before serving. If adding noodles, cook them separately on the stove. Most noodles take 5 minutes or less to cook.

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