After a bit of a hiatus, Melissa (Smells Like Brownies) and I are getting back to our weekly vegetarian lunches. Last week we tried this amazing soup recipe packed with veggies. It is warm and comforting, with lots of flavor and texture - plus it's really easy to make. It's also both vegan and vegetarian friendly. And gosh, isn't it pretty?
The soup starts out with sliced squash (we used acorn) and tiny cubes of turnip simmered in water until tender. At first I thought that one small squash and one turnip wouldn't be enough, but they turned out to be plenty! So don't go overboard and think that you need to get more/bigger. The cooking water then becomes the base for the broth and miso, tahini, and lemon zest are added to round it out.
You can garnish the soup however you like, but we stuck with the original recipe and used avocado, chives, toasted nori, and toasted sesame seeds.
The soup can be served over a grain, and we choose to try out buckwheat. We are both avoiding white rice for health reasons and thought this grain-like seed would be fun to try. Unfortunately it cooks to a porridge like consistency instead of individual grains. So I would recommend barley or brown rice instead.
Miso Tahini Soup
adapted from 101 Cookbooks
1 small delicata (or other, we used acorn) squash, (peeled if not delicata) seeded and sliced into 1/4-inch crescents
1 medium white turnip, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
4 cups water
4 tbsp white miso, or to taste
1/4 cup tahini
zest of one lemon
3 cups of cooked brown rice or other grain
1 avocado, sliced
1 bunch of chives, minced
toasted nori (or kale), crumbled
toasted sesame seeds
Add the squash and turnips to a large pot, cover with the 4 cups water, and bring to a gentle boil. Simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes (try not to let them get mushy). Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool just slightly. At this point, I recommend removing the squash with a slotted spoon in order to prepare the broth.
Pour a few tablespoons of the hot cooking liquid into a small bowl and whisk in the miso (this is to thin it out a bit and avoid clumping). Stir the thinned miso back into the pot along with the tahini and lemon zest. Taste and adjust the broth to your liking, it might need a bit more miso (for saltiness)...or more tahini.
To serve, place a generous scoop of rice in each bowl along with some of the squash and turnips. Ladle broth over the vegetables, and finish with a few slices of avocado, a sprinkling of chives, toasted nori, and sesame seeds.
If you have leftovers and need to reheat the soup, you'll want to do so gently, over low heat, to preserve the qualities of the miso.