For many Japanese, soba noodles have become a New Year’s Eve tradition, because noodles are symbolic of longevity. Soba noodles are rich in protein and fiber; they’re one of the few plant sources that contain all of the essential amino acids. They’ve also been shown to reduce cholesterol levels and blood sugar.
This recipe is a reinterpretation of the classic soba miso soup; it calls for red miso paste, which is nothing like the miso used in soups you’ll find in Japanese restaurants. It’s aged, and therefore much stronger in flavor, and it’s rich in antioxidants. Red miso paste works wonderfully with shiitake mushrooms and kale. If you prefer a milder miso, feel free to substitute a yellow or white miso instead.
Soba Miso Soup with Shiitake Mushrooms and Kale
- ½ lb fresh soba noodles (you can use udon noodles if soba isn’t available)
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium-sized red onion, sliced thinly into half-moons
- 2.5 cups sliced shiitake mushrooms
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
- 2 cups water
- 3 tbsp red miso paste
- 5 cups kale, chopped
- optional: 1 package silken tofu, diced
1. Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.
2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onions and mushrooms in extra virgin olive oil until onions are tender and a little translucent. Add garlic and ginger, and saute for another minute.
3. Add the water and miso and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer. Add the kale and toss, until kale is wilted, but still bright green.
4. Add the noodles and stir, until heated. Serve.