If you can have great friends visit during the first few weeks of the year (like my lovely life-pal Evonne), we highly recommend it. Let’s face it, if Evonne wasn’t visiting our year would have began in one of two ways:
- Keeping ourselves locked into a strict routine and forgetting to have fun adventures
- Stressed out over not adequately meeting our new years resolutions, causing a tearful binge on macadamia nuts
Instead – we are laughing, traveling, having reckless adventures, eating healthy NEW food (which means actually using our cookbooks that we buy), and overall just setting the tone for really living life in 2013. I’m not going to tell the whole story, but I am proud to say that Evonne was in town for less then 24 hours before we had to make back to back calls to the police then to my mom. It’s going to be a great year.
As a way to pay homage to the years that Evonne spent living in Japan, we decided to kick off the trip with an Asian meal – but with the time lost with the whole secret ‘cop calling’ issue, it needed to be quick. We love Asian soups of all kinds, but this one is one of my favs and totally worth making a large batch and keeping for leftovers as the tastes only get more dynamic over time. Enjoy!
Edamame Sea Vegetable Soup*
- 1/4 cup dried wakame or arame
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 small yellow onion, diced (1 1/4 cups)
- 1 tbsp peeled and minced fresh ginger
- 2 large shiitake mushrooms, slices (1 cup)
- 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
- 1 large carrot, thinly sliced (1 cup)
- 1 cup shelled edamame (we were in a hurry and used lima beans)
- 4 cups water or dashi (we added 2 tsp mushroom bouillon for flava)
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste
- 2 tbsp barley or other miso paste, optional but recommended
- Place the wakame in a small bowl with 2 cups of warm water.
- Place the sesame oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, ginger, shiitake mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the red bell pepper and carrots, stir well. Lower to medium heat, add the edamame and water, and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the wakame along with the soaking water to the pot with the remaining ingredients. Stir well before serving.