03 September, 2011

Quick and easy

We've been slowly breaking in the apartment.  Getting used to where the switches are.  Finding out what works and what doesn't.  Even the layout of the kitchen needs some getting used to.  So there's no time for fancy cooking for now.

Everyone likes a tasty soup but a good traditional Chinese soup usually needs time and ingredients - which I'm a little short on at the current moment.  Building up a good pantry needs time and planning.  At the same time, I'm extremely reluctant to resort to canned soups, monosodium glutamate (MSG) laden additives and such as a short cut.

Many people think that MSG is a bad word.  But did you know that MSG is naturally occurring?  It is that umami that one tastes when eating seafood and it's a great flavoring in small amounts.  I'm perfectly fine with naturally occurring MSG which is found in miso.  As long as no additional MSG is added.

Everything was easily available at NTUC.  Even the organic miso which doesn't contain MSG or preservatives.  I used a kelp based broth for a more "Japanese" taste and the additional minerals found in them.

Udon in Miso Soup
Japanese kelp
Fresh Shitake Mushrooms
Carrots, finely sliced
Egg tofu
Fresh Udon


  1. Clean the kelp and boil in water for 30 minutes.
  2. Remove the kelp and cut them up into pieces and set aside.
  3. Blanche the carrots, mushrooms and tofu in the kelp stock.
  4. Take the kelp stock off the heat.
  5. Place fresh udon in the serving bowl and all the blanched ingredients on the top.  Sprinkle the kelp over it.
  6. Add miso (to taste) to the kelp stock and whisk it in.  Pour soup over noodles and serve immediately.


  1. The best way to clean kelp is to use a clean damp cloth and wipe the pieces.
  2. Enoki mushrooms can also be used for variety
  3. You can add other vegetables like snow peas 
  4. Fish cake is another ingredient that you can add.

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