Our vacation was filled with two weeks of unapologetic amounts of cheese, bread, wine and pastries… so coming home, this is the kind of comforting meal I look forward to… healing asian foods… shiitake mushrooms, ginger, sesame (and kale just for kale’s sake).
This is inspired by a recipe of Heidi’s that I’ve made countless times in a variety of ways. I just love the basic flavor idea – simmering ginger broth kicked up with lime juice basil, mint, and crushed red pepper flakes. Just because vacation is over doesn’t mean it’s time to eat boring food.
I kicked up the health-factor a notch by using shiratake noodles. (If you’ve never heard of them here’s the wikipedia description). The have no carbs or calories. I know… I was scared too. I had some rice noodles waiting in the wings in case these didn’t work out but they were delicious. The key is to use them in the right application. They won’t replace al-dente pasta, so I would not recommend using them in any kind of Italian dish. But they work well in Asian soups where you’re after a more slurpy noodle anyhow.
I seared some salmon to go on top, but it would be a delicious by itself as a vegetarian meal. If you’d like some more veggie protein, add some extra edamame or seared tofu.
broth inspired by 101 Cookbooks
2 (7 oz) packages miracle shirataki noodles, (or kelp, soba, or noodle of your choice)
(I got mine in the refrigerated section at my Whole Foods, near the tofu)
splash of olive oil
1/2 -1 cup sliced shiitake mushrooms, (cleaned gently with a towel, don’t rinse them)
1 cup thinly chopped kale (about 1/2 a bunch)
1-2 teaspoons minced ginger
1 clove minced garlic
2-3 scallions, white and green parts, chopped
2-3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
1/2 cup edamame, shelled and thawed
1 – 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
handful of chopped basil
handful of chopped mint
a squeeze of lime juice
drizzle of toasted sesame oil
crushed red pepper flakes or a splash of sriracha, (optional)
sesame seeds for garnish
Prepare your noodles – if you’re using the shiratake noodles, they don’t need to be cooked, but first, drain and rinse them. They have sort of a funky smell, so I recommend shocking them in boiling water for 30 seconds. Then drain and rinse (again) in cold water. Set aside until you’re ready to use them.
In a large skillet (I used a stainless one where the sides of it are 4 or so inches high), splash a bit of olive oil. When it’s hot, add the mushrooms and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally until they have wilted down. 5 or so minutes. Toss in kale, ginger, garlic and scallions. Stir fry for a few minutes until the kale starts to wilt down, but garlic is not burning. (turn the heat down if garlic and ginger are starting to burn).
Add broth, edamame, and noodles and simmer for a few minutes. If your veggies are soaking up all your broth, add more.
Turn off heat, stir in soy sauce, basil, mint, lime juice, and red pepper flakes. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Ladle in to bowls and finish with a drizzle of toasted sesame oil and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. Top with cooked salmon, if using.
to cook the salmon:
season with salt pepper, olive oil, and press some sesame seeds on top. In a hot skillet, place salmon, sesame seed side down, and sear so a light crust forms – 2 or so minutes. (some sesame seeds will fall off, that’s ok. Flip salmon and continue cooking until it’s more (but not completely) opaque in the middle. About 4-6 more minutes. Serve on top of bowls of ginger noodles. Sprinkle with more sesame seeds if some have fallen off.