As it’s now well into winter, I’ve been wanting my meals to warm me up as well as being filling & healthy. Sort of like a type of healthy comfort food. I thought Miso would be perfect for this, as it’s something I’ve always enjoyed eating- but also it’s very quick to prepare. Traditional miso soup usually consists of having simply the soup itself, with some tofu and spring onions. However I needed something more substantial- so I used shredded chicken (in place of traditional tofu) along with langoustines as I had a heavy day in the gym planned (Muay Thai night!) so was requiring a solid dose of protein. Also the langoustines were reduced and I was too tempted.
I actually think this is brilliant for using up veg in your fridge, or using up reduced price veg- as really it’s totally customisable depending on your preferences. I didn’t use Dashi to make this, even though it’s traditional, as I wanted this to be something that was really easy to make. In Scotland Dashi isn’t something that you can pop down to the shops to pick up, unless of course you’re lucky enough to have a stockist nearby.
The ingredients needed are:
1 x Nest of Whole-wheat noodles (any thickness is fine)
1 x Chicken Breast- of medium size (or bigger if you’re particularly hungry!)
2 x Spring Onions
½ Long Slim Red Pepper
2 Baby Leeks (Or roughly ¼ of a regular leek)
Serving of chickpeas (I used this as I had some leftover, you can substitute with whatever you have)
5 x Langoustines
2.5 Heaped/Generous teaspoons of Miso paste.
Pepper to taste. (Miso provides the saltiness, but extra salt can be added if you prefer)
The first part of the recipe is to cook the chicken breast (grilled or steamed) so it’s just done. Then taking two forks, shred it into rough pieces. It’s important not to shred the chicken too finely, otherwise it tends to “get lost” in the soup. This should be set aside for now. The spring onions and red pepper should be chopped into the size you prefer at this point, so they are ready to be added later.
Next, cook through the raw ingredients. At this point, the quantity of water needed should be the amount needed to cook- not the amount for the quantity of soup needed. Boil the water in a pan, and add in the noodles first. After they are part cooked, add in the Langoustines, leeks, and chickpeas. Boil these for a minute or two- not long at all- as they will continue cooking when you turn off the heat.
Once nearly cooked, turn off the heat so you’re ready to add the miso. The heat is turned off, as you shouldn’t add miso to boiling water, but also you don’t want anything to be overcooked & rubbery. I like to add the pre- cooked shredded chicken here, as it heats it up nicely.
The Miso paste is next, however the excess water in the pan should be drained out to reach the volume of water required for your serving of soup. Make sure your langoustines are still covered by the water, so the residual heat cooks them through perfectly.
I stirred the miso paste into the water until it dissolved, but the traditional Japanese way works better- using a sieve to dissolve it into the hot water to ensure there are no lumps. At this point I like to add some coarse ground black pepper too, but this is optional. You could also add a sliced chilli if you wanted something a little hotter.
Lastly, add the spring onion and red pepper, and serve immediately!
Note: Click on the images for larger version in more detail.