Tea in Your Soup

Golden Himalayan Miso Mushroom Soup

Umami is the fifth taste we find in food. (The others are sweet, sour, salt and bitter.) It is an earthy, almost meaty flavor that is found in soy sauce, mushrooms, miso, sea greens and some types of green and black teas. The other day I stopped by Culteavo Tea Shop to check out the collection of tea samples for the day. It’s so fun that they often have a few different blends of teas there available to try. It’s a great way to learn about tea and to explore new flavors. I like that the tea samples change often. You never know what you’ll find.

One of the teas that recently grabbed my attention was the Himalayan Golden Organic Black Tea. I love the burst of umami. It’s a milder tea, not too bitter. As you know, I am always on the lookout for new recipe ideas. When I sipped the Himalayan Tea, I immediately thought to myself “MUSHROOM SOUP!”

Himalayan Golden Organic Black Tea is from a premium tea plantation in Nepal. It’s beautifully shaped leaf has many golden tips, and has a low astringency and sweet aroma. Yumm!

I am excited to share this new recipe with you because it is so simple, delicious and so nourishing. I like that it is a more brothy soup, as opposed to the traditional cream based mushroom soups. It’s light and will go nicely with a dark leafy green salad with sweet red peppers and fresh lemon sesame vinaigrette.

There are so many different kinds of mushrooms that you can enjoy in this recipe. Just use what you have on hand, or what you can find locally. At my local grocery store, I just picked up a fun combo of delicate and meaty Shiitake, Cremini and Oyster mushrooms. I then added the less expensive Button mushrooms as well. I considered reconstituting dried mushrooms, but I have tried that several times and I just can’t get over the chewy texture. When I was home visiting family last Thanksgiving, I visited the Holiday Farmer’s Market in Eugene, Oregon. It was astonishing to see how many varieties of wild mushrooms are out there. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find affordable wild mushrooms here in Connecticut. So, if you find some at your local farmer’s market or grocery store, don’t miss out. Grab them when you can!

Golden Himalayan Miso Mushroom Soup

Serves 2 -3 (Calories 300, Protein 15, Net Carbs 21)

 

3 cups of freshly brewed Himalayan Tea

1 palm sized piece of dried Kombu or Dolce

3 cups of your favorite low sodium Mushroom or Veggie broth

3 Tablespoons of Miso Paste

2 cups of fresh Mushrooms, sliced

1 cup of Green Onions, chopped

1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 Tablespoon Lite/Low sodium Soy Sauce (Coconut aminos, or Braggs work great as well)

4 cloves of Garlic, minced

1-2 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger, grated, to taste

2 cup of fresh Bok Choy greens, chopped. (Save the white stalks with no greens for another recipe.)

4 oz of soft tofu, chopped

Fresh Ground Black Pepper, to taste

Dried red pepper flakes and/or Sriracha hot sauce, to taste

  • Start by brewing a pot of delicious Himalayan Golden Organic Tea. (4-6 Tsp per 18 oz.) Place a piece of Kombu or Dolce into the bottom of your pot, so that in addition to you steeping your tea leaves, you are also adding the additional depth of umami flavor from the seaweed. After 5 minutes, remove the Dolce and tea leaves. Add Miso paste to 3 cups of tea. Help the miso dissolve by pressing and stirring it with a wisk. Set aside.
  • Place 1 Tablespoon of Extra Virgin Olive Oil into a hot skillet. Add ½ of your green onions and all of the mushrooms. Stir occasionally. Once mushrooms release their liquid, lower heat a bit and add ginger, soy sauce, black pepper and garlic.
  • Once you smell the garlic, add 3 cups of tea and 3 cups of broth. Try not to let it boil, just bring it up to a low simmer. When you see small simmer bubbles, add Bok Choy and Tofu. I prefer to just wilt the Bok Choy leaves without making them mushy, so no need to leave them in very long. You can also choose to add the raw Bok Choy to your soup bowl without wilting them. It’s up to you. The tofu just needs time to warm up.
  • Serve in a bowl, adding garnish of the rest of your green onions, dried red pepper flakes and/or Sriracha to taste. I like more black pepper on top as well. Enjoy!

 

Here are some fun additions and variations to this recipe that you may want to try:

Ramen – Add your favorite ramen noodles, (pasta, spaghetti squash or tofu zero noodles) as well as other fun garnish ideas such as Bean Sprouts, Daikon, Basil or Nori.

Cream of Mushroom Soup – Add your favorite cream near the end of the recipe. (Cashew Cream is my favorite. It is made by soaking cashews overnight, then blending into a smooth cream with a nutribullet). Most creams, such as Non-Dairy Sour Cream, Coconut Cream or Soy Milk will work great as long as they are not sweetened.

Hearty Veggies – Add your favorite veggies to this light soup for a more hearty meal. Great choices may include Broccoli, Cauliflower, Peas, Potatoes and Onions.

Wild rice– Add your favorite Wild Rice Blend, Brown Rice, Farro or Barley. (Add your favorite ancient grains, cooked, at the end.)

Some Like it Hot – For those of us who like a good kick in the face, add red pepper flakes to the Olive Oil at the very beginning to bring out more spice. You can also add a teaspoon of chili oil to the mushrooms once their moisture is released. You may also choose to use a scoop of red chili paste as garnish in your bowl.

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