Purple Cleansing Simple Miso Soup

My tum has been troubling me as of late and I needed something simple to calm it down and get things moving. Miso soup it was! I used to have miso soup every morning when I was more macrobiotic and I think it’s time I started up that habit again.

Purple Cleansing Simple Miso Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 cup finely chopped cabbage (red/purple)
  • 1/2 medium white onion, finely sliced
  • 3ish tablespoons dried wakame
  • 3ish tablespoons miso (red)
  • 4ish cups water

Method

  1. Toss everything in a pot. Bring the water to a boil. Mix a few times, then reduce heat to low and cover.
  2. Simmer for 20 minutes on low heat, allowing the veggies to fully cook through.
  3. Enjoy for breakfast or anytime really 🙂

Looks gross but it really is delicious (this is the broth).

The last time I made a cleansing veggie soup was almost 2 years ago!

If you ever wanted to hear more about my macrobiotic trials…

Just one more day to get through and then it’s the weekend. Do you have any plans?

My plans are up in the air; Valentine’s day is Monday but maybe we will celebrate early. I think it also might be time for me to do some shopping. I am sorely lacking in style as of late.

P.S. Please check out Clare’s post on chair pose about me!

Souen Macrobiotic Restaurant: The Best Lunch Ever

This morning after meeting (3rd week in a row!) Bobby and I went to Souen, a macrobiotic restaurant, for brunch. You might remember that I experimented with macrobiotics last year (actually it was just over a year ago this month) and I really enjoyed it. I cultivated my love of kabocha and I learned a lot about how the food we eat impacts the way we feel. Here are some resources:

So today I wanted to try going back to macrobiotics again. I opted for “Brunch A” ($8.50 – well worth it!! Huge portions for me):

  • Kenchin-Tofu Drop Soup: tofu, shiitake, burdock, carrot and watercress in kombu kuzu broth.
  • Corn Bread or Spelt Bread (I got corn bread, duh – with miso tahini dressing)
  • Steamed Vegetables (carrot, daikon, squash and greens)

Bobby got “Brunch B” ($11 – oddly enough this was less food than Brunch A):

  • Yuba: steamed tofu “skin” marinated in kombu-shiitake broth.
  • Mixed Grain of the Day (basmati wild rice)
  • Goma-Ae: steamed special greens with black sesame sauce.
  • Goma Tofu: soy free, creamy and nutty sesame “tofu”.
  • Stewed Vegetables: cooked carrot, gobo, yam cake and lotus root in tamari broth.

I thought this was possibly the best lunch/brunch I have ever had. And there were flowers, soy sauce, and sesame seeds:

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My soup came first. Bobby and I actually swapped soups because we each liked the other’s better.

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The cornbread was really interesting (in a good way) – it was not very sweet at all and tasted healthy (again, in a good way). It came with miso tahini dressing (I finished this dressing and got more – so good). Two related recipes that I made before:

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My veggies came last. The kabocha was ripe and perfectly steamed. The carrots and daikon were also perfectly steamed. Even the kale was delicious! (Sometimes I think it’s boring.)

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Here was Bobby’s spread (clockwise from top left: spinach, rice, tofu skin thing, sesame tofu thing, and soup):

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I thought that Bobby’s gomae (steamed spinach with sesame sauce – I have a recipe here) was really yummy. He thought it tasted a little bit like dirt, but I honestly thought it was great. I also thought his goma tofu (tofu made with sesame) was good, but he didn’t like the texture much. Next time he is getting fish. We’re going to bring his mom here when his family visits in March (!). I think she would appreciate it.

Brunch dessert was a piece of Macasure chocolate. I saw it at Whole Foods yesterday and picked it up. Really good! Bobby liked it too.

macasure_chocolat_bar_angled

I’m gonna end with a mantra that I was contemplating this morning during my hour of silence:

May everyone be happy, well, and peaceful.

How was your weekend?

East Japanese Restaurant Review & Contemplation

I had my first acupuncture treatment this morning. So far I am very impressed with Nicholas Steadman, but I’ll probably write a more thorough review after I’ve gotten it again (I signed up for another session on Thursday night). I think I am very lucky to have found this.

Here is some food! Bobby and I have been to this Japanese place called East 3 times now. We have definitely learned what to get. The menus have pictures for every dish:

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I like to get tea (complimentary) with my meals.

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The first time we went I got this grilled broccoli. Kind of a ripoff ($2.50 I think), but very good.

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Bobby got this burdock noodle soup with tempura and fish cake things. He said it was delicious and finished it… I got to taste the broth though. Pretty yummy.

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The first night he also got this salmon roll ($10?). I’m not that much of a sushi person, but I tried it and I thought it was alright.

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I had to get a salad, and this one rocked. It was only $6 and it was huge.

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And I got this grilled salmon (miso glazed, $9) and horseradish with some sort of roe. I actually chopped most of this up and put it in the salad – so awesome. If this were cheaper I would get it again (it was a fairly small portion).

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The next time we went with my mom (she had been up to help me paint). I got the salad again ($6). It is gigantic and probably the best deal I’ve seen in New York.

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My mom got a bento box which came with a small salad and miso soup.

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That night I got the chicken teriyaki ($5 something?). Ahh, this was delicious. It came with a piece of broccoli and a piece of carrot.

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This was the rest of my mom’s bento box – seaweed salads, rice, salmon teriyaki, tempura, and a roll. I helped her 🙂

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Bobby got a soup again that night. I don’t remember which one. Or maybe this was the burdock one and the other one was something else. Anyway, this was delicious as well.

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And that same salmon roll (I want to say it’s called salmon lover’s).

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We went again last night for Salmon Thursday! Lots of salmon dishes were super-reduced, so Bobby and I went all out for salmon. Happy couple:

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I got the salad yet again. Bobby got that salmon roll yet again.

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Then… I got something called “salmon neck” for just $4. This plate is twice the size of a normal dinner plate. So huge!! It wasn’t all meat though (bones, eyes – you know – the usual).

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It came with some horseradish stuff. Bobby also got a natto roll (fermented soybeans – I do NOT like this).

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And another ridiculously cheap salmon roll (normally $14 or something, but on Salmon Thursday I think it’s $8).

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Wow, what a lot of delicious Japanese food. I would highly recommend East. They have a few other locations as well. Bobby was the mayor briefly at this one, but he was ousted just last night.

What are your weekend plans? I am going to IKEA!

Review: Menchanko Tei (Ramen)

Let’s talk ramen. What is it? Basically – noodles and broth. It’s traditionally a Japanese dish, but it did originate in China. The broth is usually a meat or fish stock, and it will have soy or miso (or both) in it. Popular toppings – pork, shrimp, fish balls, fish cakes, scallions, cabbage, spinach, dried seaweed, fish flakes (forget what these are called), and even corn (yum). It’s kind of an art form in Japan; every town has their own special dish, and there is always competition for who can make the best ramen.

Back at Cornell I watched a movie called Tampopo about Japanese food. It’s a “noodle western” (a play on Speaghetti Western). Until I watched this movie I didn’t realize the cultural importance of ramen in Japan. It was a good film, so put it on your list!

A few weeks ago Bobby sent me this picture in the middle of the day:

He had gone to Menchanko Tei, a ramen place in Manhattan. I think he went to the one on East 45th Street between Lex and 3rd Aves.

He got the signature Menchanko bowl ($9) – their original noodle recipe, individually cooked in a cast iron bowl (see picture). It starts with traditional thick ramen noodles and a rich soy broth, then it’s topped with chicken, shrimp, fish balls, tofu, ricecakes, and vegetables.

He says: “Really good. They make their own noodles there. The broth was salty and savory (in a good way) and it was perfectly hot. Ramen is best hot. And this was awesome. I’m pretty sure they did not use MSG, but don’t quote me on that.” (Whoops!)

Wish I could have joined you, sweetie! I was hard at work, and I don’t remember what I had for lunch that day (it was December 1st, a Tuesday).

Luckily, we are getting ramen a week from tomorrow (Sunday the 20th) before Bobby heads down to Miami (I’m joining him a few days later for Christmas with his family). We’re going with our friends (we went to Josie’s West with them). I have never really been a ramen person, but I’m hoping that my tastes have changed. Bobby is always raving about ramen and I want to rave about it too.

Do you like ramen? Do you like noodles? I’m not much of a soup person, but this week I have been going crazy for these macrobiotic vegan noodle dishes. They’re awesome.

P.S. Happy Hanukkah to those of you who celebrate it! Enjoy 🙂

Review: Joe’s Shanghai In Chinatown (New York)

My coworkers think this post should be called The Salad Girl Exposed”.

Disclaimer: all photos in this post are from Yelp.

Today’s lunch (Saturday) was at Joe’s Shanghai in Chinatown. Bobby and I met up with my 2 coworkers, their significant others, and a few other friends (11 of us total) for a huge meal. Joe’s is pretty famous; it has a great reputation and I was really psyched to try it. It did not disappoint. Joe’s is a pretty standard Chinese restaurant (not Dim Sum) and it’s very cheap (but rather expensive for Chinatown).

We let G do the ordering for the table and he did a great job. We started off with Joe’s soup dumplings. There are 8 in one order ($6.65 for crab/pork; $4.65 for pork) and I’m pretty sure that G got 12 orders of them (6×8 of crab/pork; 6×8 of pork). There were only 4 dumplings left by the end of the meal and Bobby and I got to take them home.

These were amazing. Apparently soup dumplings are something of an art form in China, and Joe is a celebrity. The dumpling contains a savory broth and meat in the middle. You bite a small piece of the wonton-ish dumpling part off, slurp out the soup broth, and then eat the dumpling. They are served atop steamed napa cabbage, which I happily ate as well.

We also got a soup – I think it was the Hong Kong Style Hot & Sour Soup ($6.35). It came with shrimp, some meat (chicken or pork?), mushrooms, tofu, egg, and maybe more. The broth was your standard hot and sour broth.

This was really delicious as well. Lots of variety in the flavors and ingredients, very fresh and hot – it was perfect for a miserable weather day like today. (For those of you not in this area – today it was raining/snowing all day and absolutely freezing. I am so glad to be inside my overheated apartment right now.)

Those were just the appetizers. We also got 2 orders of shrimp fried rice ($8.95)… (it was okay; I’m not really a rice person).

A bunch of scallion pancakes ($2.35 each) (freaking amazing – I could not get enough)…

A tofu dish called Bean Curd Home Style ($8.95), which was pretty good for being tofu. I liked the veggies best. I couldn’t find a picture.

Another (unpictured) dish was the String Beans Szechuan Style (With Pork) ($8.95). These were sauteed string beans with little pieces of pork – kind of like chorizo. They were pretty good, but very salty.

We also got Clams In Black Bean Sauce ($13.35), which were really good as well. I love clams!

And for dessert we got a fried red bean pancake that I can’t find on the menu. It looked pretty much like this… (picture source).

I had like 5 pieces of it. I think red bean is my most favorite dessert thing ever.

After lunch we walked over to a boba tea shop called Ten Ren but on the way we stopped to get Chinese dried fruits and candies. More on that later. Bobby got a Hot Taro Milk ($3.00) drink with jelly in it and shared it with me. Today was a perfect day for a hot drink. It is so cold outside.

The milk was purple!

I’m sitting on my couch now eating some grapes from Chinatown ($1.80 per pound for sketchy grapes totally beats Whole Foods’ $3.99 per pound organic grapes).

Question of the day is… what’s your favorite Chinese food dish?