Yummy Asian Noodle Soup

6 Sep

I had this past weekend to myself.

Did you hear that??

To. Myself. As in, the husband took the children away for two and a half days and I had my own house to my own self, with just me in it, totally alone. For a weekend. A long weekend. A long, quiet, uninterrupted weekend. For the first time in more than 10 years.

It. Was. Beautiful.

Don’t get me wrong–I adore my family. Love them, love them, love them. But do you have any idea what you can do with two and a half days all alone in your own house that you live in? You guys should see the pile of stuff I have outside for charity pick-up today (I’d take a picture but it’s raining and I don’t really do wet more than necessary). And you should see my immaculate basement and my spotless kitchen and my gorgeously clean and organized bathrooms, and the way things are folded and stacked just so in my linen closet. AND I watched two girly movies all by myself and slept late both days and did a little shopping (shhhh!).

Right?? Wonderful and amazing, and I was super glad to see my gang pull in the driveway yesterday afternoon, because I’d had a fabulous couple of days to regroup and recharge, which makes all the difference every so often.

I also cooked. For myself. Things that my family would complain madly but that I made and enjoyed greatly because they weren’t here. It was fun, gang. Serious fun.

One of the things I made was this delicious Asian Noodle Soup from Words to Eat By, which is among my favorite food blogs, especially for moms and dads who have precious little time to get a healthy, tasty meal on the table every day. I give it a big thumbs-up! I had it for lunch and dinner one day, and I have another bowl ready for my lunch today (I also borrowed her photo, which was much better than mine). A few notes:

I used dried garlic and dried ginger from The Spice Hunter in this. The simmering reconstituted it, and sometimes it’s just easier than using fresh, especially in a soup. I used about a tablespoon of each.

I like that the veggie bit of this is wide open so you can use what you want. I used spinach (a lot of it–it shrinks down markedly when you cook it), mushrooms, scallions, a few carrots, and a can of Chinese stir-fry vegetables I found in the Asian aisle of my supermarket, which were perfect for this. You could, of course, ditch the chicken or tofu and make this an Asian vegetable soup as well.

Get the mirin (also on the Asian aisle at the supermarket). You could substitute sherry with some sugar, but I think the mirin makes a huge flavor difference, and it keeps for a very long time so you’ll use it all up. That’s also where you’ll find the soba noodles, which leads me to…

If you’re going to have leftovers or you’re making this for a few days, don’t add the noodles to the soup in the pot. Instead, put some noodles in your bowl and ladle the soup over it, and then store the noodles in the fridge by themselves. Each time you heat a bowl up, add noodles. That way, they won’t disintegrate into mush by day 2.

This would be delicious with a shot of sriracha or other hot sauce if you like your Chinese food spicy. As it was, it reminded me greatly of my favorite soba noodle soup from my favorite Asian restaurant, and was perfect for my calm, productive weekend at home. I hope you try it, and thanks to Debbie for writing it!

One Response to “Yummy Asian Noodle Soup”

  1. debbie koenig September 6, 2011 at 9:46 am #

    Wow, Kim, thanks for the kind words! And thanks for the reminder about this soup–it’s rainy here today & I’ve got sick ones at home, so it’s the perfect day for it.

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