Shiitake Miso Soup
5-6 shitake mushrooms
½ cup carrots, cubed
2 cups baby spinach
½ block extra firm tofu, cubed
6 cup water
¼ cup onion, cubed
¼ cup celery, cubed
1 sweet potato, cubed
6-8 tablespoons unpasteurized barley miso (I use South River Miso – available at Whole Foods)
Saute carrots, onion, sweet potato and shitake mushrooms in 1 tablespoon olive oil for 10 minutes, in a soup pan.
Add water and bring to boil.
Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes, until vegetables are the right tenderness.
Add spinach or other greens.
Remove 1 cup liquid from the pot dissolve miso paste and return it to pot.
Turn heat very low and cook for 2-3 minutes
Note: Miso soup is the Japanese version of chicken soup - a combination soul food and comfort food. It is traditionally eaten at breakfast in Japan as a daily staple. Miso is a paste made from fermented soybeans, and is full of antioxidants like vitamin E, as well as protective fatty acids. It's healthful and delicious, and the Japanese say that the linoleic acid in miso promotes soft skin. The soybeans miso is made from also contain isoflavones and other elements that provide protection against some forms of cancer. To preserve these properties, miso should not be boiled. Add it to a soup after it has been removed from direct heat. When reheating, add more miso after you reheat soup.