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Three-Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

 

Today I bring you one of Jeremy’s favorite dishes – miso soup! He’s been after me to make him a good miso soup so I figured before it got too hot, I’d make one last soup for him – and you! This one is actually vegan and is made with loads of vegetable goodness plus some killer tofu. No such thing! I can hear some of you thinking, but think again! We found a delicious tofu at the Hollygrove Market and Farm that had mushrooms, green onions and bean sprout noodle threads in it. It’s a great combo and was the final catalyst that I needed to actually develop this soup recipe. Yay, farmer’s market bounty!

Three Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

Before we talk more about this soup, let’s back up and talk about what miso is. Miso is a fermented soybean paste that hails from the Japanese cooking tradition. The soy beans are typically fermented with barley, rice or some other grain. It’s salty and delicious – full of that wonderful, savory umami flavor everyone keeps talking about. Apparently miso has been around in Japan since the Neolithic era, which coincides with the Jomon period in Japanese history, both of which began about 12,000 BC or so. So basically, miso’s been around almost forever. You can actually say that about miso! One of the things I find so fascinating about the Japanese is simply how long they’ve been around. Marvelous, really.

Three Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

Typically in the US, we’re able to get three types of miso: white, red and yellow. Generally speaking, the darker the color, the longer it’s been fermented. Today I used red miso because it’s known for its strong flavor (due to long fermentation time), which lends itself well as a flavoring agent for something like this soup. With the high water (stock) content in this soup it’s able to tolerate a strongly flavored miso. Also note – if you’re concerned about GMO’s, I suggest that you either use an organic miso or one that’s labelled Non-GMO. When using soy products, it’s something I always keep in mind.

Three Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

To ensure that this soup had maximum flavor, I went ahead and made my own mushroom stock. Sure you can buy pre-made mushroom stock at the store, but who knows exactly what it’ll taste like. Whenever I’m making soup with a vegetable broth base, I always make my own. I tend to use the store bought organic chicken and beef stocks since those have a more consistent flavor profile with what I’d make myself. But to me, the store bought vegetable-based stocks never taste quite right. Therefore, I make my own.

Three Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

The best part about the stock is that you can use most of the stems from the mushrooms you buy to make the stock. Very few actual whole mushrooms will need to go into the stock. In regards to the veggies you use in the stock, it’s smart to keep peeling and scraps from things like onions, celery and carrots. This way your stock is a little cheaper to create. Like here, I used the green tops from some onions from the farmer’s market and half a red onion that I had leftover. You can even use the peelings of the onion if you like. It’s all flavor. The only things I’d caution you not to use are the celery leaves and the actual root core of the onion. Both of these can lead to a bitter stock. Otherwise, use the scraps and peelings – that’s economical!

Three Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

As for the mushrooms, you can use any that you like, but I call for three specific ones in the recipe: shiitake, oyster, and cremini. I am able to get the first two at my local farmer’s market and creminis come in bulk at my local Whole Foods so for me, these were the most economical mushrooms to use. They also happen to be three of my favorite mushrooms so that just worked out well. Remember, when cleaning those mushrooms, keep the stems for your stock! It’s all about using trimmings and stems and stuff that’s otherwise “trash” in your stock. Stems tend to have alot of flavor and that’s exactly what you want in the stock. Plus, when you finish with the stock, you’ll probably just be tossing the veggies in the trash anyway – unless you have some super creative way to use them – so you don’t wanna use the prime stuff in the stock base. Keep that for the final soup.

Three Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

So that’s my miso soup story, and I’m sticking to it! What about you? Do you like miso soup? Ever make it yourself? Tell me all about it in the comments. I’m interested in your experience.

Yield: 4 servings

Three-Mushroom and Tofu Miso Soup Recipe

This miso soup recipe is vegan and features red miso, tofu, thinly slice onions, and three types of mushrooms - shiitake, cremini and oyster.

Ingredients:

Mushroom Stock:

  • 10 cups water
  • 4 cups mushroom stems and scraps
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped onion scraps and pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrot scraps and pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped celery scraps and pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, cut in half
  • 2 bay leaves

Soup:

  • 1 batch mushroom stock, strained (about 6 cups)
  • 2 cups sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 cups sliced oyster mushrooms
  • 2 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
  • 1 cup fresh green peas
  • 1 cup thinly sliced yellow onion
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons red miso
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 8 ounces firm tofu, cut into 1/2” chunks
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil

Method:

Mushroom Stock:

  1. Add all ingredients to a soup-sized pot and stir well to combine.
  2. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer. Cook for one hour, 15 minutes total - start the timer when you put the pot on the heat.

Soup:

  1. This recipe assumes you’re starting with hot mushroom stock. After you strain the stock, add it back to the soup pot and turn the heat back up to high to bring the stock back up to a simmer.
  2. To the strained stock, add the sliced shiitake, oyster and cremini mushrooms plus the green peas, sliced yellow onion, and kosher salt. Stir well and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Whisk together the miso and the half cup of water. Stir into the soup.
  4. Turn off the stove flame or heating element, and then add the green onions, tofu and sesame oil.
  5. Allow to sit for five minutes to heat the tofu then stir gently and serve. Don’t stir too vigorously or the tofu will break apart.

Prep:35 min

Cook:1 hour 35 min

Total:2 hour 10 min

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