Soba Miso Soup with Edamame, Shiitake & Tofu

31 Jul

Serves 3

Last week we moved to a new house, the fourth time since 2008. I love the exciting live we life, love the house but with a family of five, it’s quite a schlep!

To make sure we get the right nutrition in hectic times, this vegetarian soup is perfect. It truly is a superfoods soup containing lots of protein, minerals and vitamins. It’s not only healthy but simple delicious too.

So if you are busy but still want something good: this is the answer. Enjoy.


3 bundles of soba (buckwheat) noodles

1 tbsp. of sesame oil

2 shallots, minced

1 clove of garlic, minced

1 tsp. of ground ginger

3 cups/ 750ml Dashi  Stock

2 tbsp.  White Miso

½ block of firm Tofu, diced

2 Green Onions/Scallions, finely sliced diagonally

1 Carrot, thinly sliced

1 cup/ 155g frozen or fresh Edamame

100g /6 Shiitake Mushrooms, cut into big chunks

2 tbsp. of Soya


Set a large pot over medium-low heat. Add the sesame oil and heat for 1 minute. Sauté the shallots and when they are about done add the minced garlic.  Once translucent add the sliced carrot and one teaspoon of ground ginger. Toss the ingredients until the carrots are covered with shallot, garlic and ginger and cook for a few minutes.

Add dashi stock to pot and bring to boil. Once boiling reduce the heat, and add the edamame, shiitake mushrooms and tofu. Simmer for 5-7 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a separate pot of water to a boil. Add the soba noodles and cook until tender. Drain with a colander and run under cold water, set the noodles aside.

Scoop out one ladle of soup and dissolve 2 tablespoons of miso in it by whisking it to a smooth consistency.  If you try to dissolve the miso in the soup directly, it might clump together.

Once the miso is dissolved return it to the broth and simmer for a few minutes. Be careful not to boil the soup after adding the miso.

Season the soup with some soya. Divide the soba noodles among the bowls, ladle soup on top and garnish with green onions. Serve immediately.

Bon Appetite 😉


Chicken Miso Ramen Soup

24 Jul


Serves 4

Ramen is an enormously popular noodle dish in Japan. True comfort food, which is sold on every corner of the street, freshly prepared or in an instant form. In Tokyo you will even find a museum ‘Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum’ which is completely dedicated to the history of ramen and the big success of instant ramen.

Ramen noodles are in generally made of wheat flour and if you can get your hands on fresh ramen noodles, scrumptiously delicious. The taste of the ramen depends on the soup you serve them in. In this recipe I used my grandmothers chicken soup recipe, which you will be able to find on the site as well. If you are in a rush then please, choose the best chicken stock base you can find in your supermarket.


1,5L/6 cups Chicken Stock

4 tbsp. White Miso

300g /2 cups shredded Chicken

326g/2 cups of Corn

250gr/8 cups of Spinach

4 Eggs, cooked, peeled and sliced in half

4 servings of Ramen Noodles

2 tbsp Soya Light

1 tbsp Sesame Oil

1 tbsp Sesame Seeds, roasted

3 green onions, sliced



Heat the chicken stock in a pot. Once boiling reduce the heat simmer for a few minutes on low heat.

Scoop out one large ladle of soup and dissolve 4 tablespoons of miso in it by whisking it to a smooth consistency. If you try to dissolve the miso in the soup directly, it might clump together.

Once the miso is dissolved return it to the broth and simmer for a few minutes but be careful not to boil the soup after adding the miso.

Boil the eggs and cook for 5 minutes. Rinse them with cold water and allow the eggs to cool down before peeling and slicing in half.

Heat one tablespoon of sesame oil in your frying pan and add the corn. Stir and fry the corn for a few minutes and set aside.

Boil salted water and blanch the spinach for 2 minutes until just wilted. Drain immediately and set aside.

Roast one tablespoon of sesame seeds in your frying pan and set aside.

Slice the green onions and set aside.

Last step of the preparation is to cook the ramen noodles. If you have fresh ramen noodles you will only needs to cook for 1 minute, drain and rinse with cold water.

Take four large serving bowls and place the ramen noodles in each bowl. Now top the ramen with spinach, corn, shredded chicken and egg. Sprinkle the roasted sesame seeds and the green onion on top.

Bon Appetite 😉


Miso Soup

16 Jul

It’s Miso time! Being surrounded by wonderful Japanese friends, I have been inspired to cook many different Japanese dishes. Soup is one of the vital components of a Japanese meal and is served with nearly every meal in the day.  I have been over the moon with Miso soup: so easy to prepare and so versatile. It has a rich taste and great nutritional benefits.

If you will visit your local Asian/Japanese store, you will be able to find many different types of Miso. White miso, red miso and a blended type of miso. The darker the colour, the longer the fermentation process, the stronger the taste will be. My favourite is the white miso which has a light and slightly sweet taste.

To make miso soup you will be needing dashi as well. Dashi is a very popular basic stock which is used in many different Japanese recipes. Dashi  is often made of seaweed, vegetables and fish flakes and sold in jars or sachets. If you like to avoid fish in your miso, you can buy a vegan dashi.

Today I would like to start with the traditional miso soup, which has been a favourite in Japan for many centuries. Next week will move on to a more rich and hearty miso and hope you will join the miso experience!


1 L  Dashi  Stock

3 tbsp.  White Miso

½ block of firm Tofu, diced

2 Spring Onions, finely sliced

1 tbsp. Wakame (dried seaweed)


Soak 1 tablespoon of Wakame in cold water and let it soak for 4-6 minutes. Heat 1 liter of water in a pot and add the dashi granules/powder. Bring the dashi stock to boil.

Once boiling reduce the heat, add the diced tofu and drained wakame and simmer for a few minutes on low heat.

Scoop out one large ladle of soup and dissolve 3 tablespoons of miso in it by whisking it to a smooth consistency.  If you try to dissolve the miso in the soup directly, it might clump together.

Once the miso is dissolved return it to the broth and simmer for a few minutes. Be careful not to boil the soup after adding the miso: it can become gritty, kills the aroma and some say, healthful enzymes.

Top with a sprinkling of spring onions and serve hot or cold.

Bon Appetite 😉

Broccoli & Stilton Soup

9 Jul

Serves 6-8

Indulge yourself with this delicious Broccoli and Stilton soup. As some of you may know by now, I love to cook delicious yet healthy and low-fat soups. This soup does not qualify for the lowest in fat ever but the calories are definitely worth it! The Stilton cheese gives the soup such a rich flavour but is not overpowering and somehow brings out the best of the broccoli too. If you can’t find Stilton cheese, free to buy another blue cheese instead.



2 tbsp. olive oil

1 white onion, diced

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

2 heads of broccoli, about 600g, roughly chopped

4 sticks of celery, peeled and cut into small pieces

1 medium potato, peeled and diced

1.5 L vegetable stock

1 tsp of dried thyme

150g Stilton cheese (blue cheese), crumbled


Heat the olive oil on medium heat in your stockpot. Sauté the onions and when they are about done add the garlic and the teaspoon of dried thyme.  Once translucent add the roughly chopped broccoli, celery pieces and diced potato. Stir gently, then cover with a lid and allow to sweat for 5 – 10 minutes.

Pour in your stock and bring to boil. Once boiling reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

Turn off the heat and let the soup cool down for a few minutes. Then purée the ingredients with a hand blender in the stockpot or puree in batches in your blender.

Return the soup to a clean pan and stir in the crumbled Stilton cheese. I like to serve the soup when the cheese has not completely dissolved yet but if you do, you can always use a hand blender for a few seconds.

Season the soup with some freshly ground pepper and serve with a warm and crusty piece of bread.

Bon Appetite 😉

Mom’s Great Gazpacho Soup

3 Jul

Serves 4-6

The first time I ate this delicious soup was over 25 years ago. At the time my mom made this soup it was a very exotic dish. Growing up in a family where all my ancestors originate from a different country our meals were not typically Dutch, but still this Gazpacho was something else! A soup which we ate cold and then garnished with all sorts of different toppings ourselves was special and very festive. The recipe of the soup is very simple, and to me it is perfect just the way it is. Please, choose ripe and flavourful tomatoes which are warmed to room temperature before you use them. The dicing of the garnish does require some time. If you’re a bit short on time, I would say go for the home-baked croutons (I promise you: after trying these you will never want them any other way) and garnish the gazpacho with some fresh basil. This amount of tomatoes yields 1.5L of soup or in my case after tasting 1.25L…. I hope you will enjoy this recipe as much as we do.


2 Kg plum tomatoes

Juice of 1 lime

3 cloves garlic, puréed with garlic press or minced

2 tsp. clear honey

4 sprigs of thyme, leaves only

3 tsp. ground paprika

1 tbsp. olive oil

Sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper


2 hard-boiled eggs, diced

½ red pepper, ½ yellow pepper & ½green pepper, diced

1 red onion, diced

½ cucumber, diced

6 slices of regular white bread – for croutons (preferably a day or two old)



Wash the tomatoes thoroughly. Cut a shallow X on the bottom of the tomato. Prepare a bowl of ice water and set aside. Drop the tomatoes into the boiling water and immediately remove it once the skin starts to peel, approx. 30 seconds. Place the tomatoes in the bowl of ice water and leave it there for a few minutes. Once the tomatoes have cooled off, you will be able to peel off the skin very easily.

Purée all the peeled tomatoes with a hand blender or regular blender. Pass the tomato purée through a sieve or a strainer to remove all the seeds. Stir in the tablespoon of olive oil, juice of the lime, the teaspoons of ground paprika and honey. Add the purée of the 3 cloves of garlic by using a garlic press or chop very fine with a knife. Season with sea salt, coarsely ground pepper and the leaves of the thyme. Chill in the fridge for a least three hours or even better, chill overnight. Please, don’t chill the soup with ice cubes as it will dilute the beautiful flavour.

To make the garnish, finely dice the onion, red pepper, yellow pepper, green pepper, cucumber and hard-boiled egg.

For the croutons, preheat your oven to 375 F or 190 C degrees. Cut the slices of bread into 1 cm (½ inch) cubes. Drizzle bread cubes with olive oil, sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper and toss until well mixed. Spread the bread cubes in a singly layer on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown. Keep your eye on them, to make sure they don’t burn, and turn to brown all sides evenly. Once golden brown, remove from the oven and let them cool.

I like to serve the gazpacho without the garnish. Instead, I place all the different kinds of garnish on the table and let everybody make their own creation.

Bon Appetite 😉

Cream of Green Asparagus

26 Jun

Serves 4-6

It’s Asparagus season! There is nothing quite like cooking asparagus that’s been pulled straight from the ground. As the British asparagus season is a mere eight weeks, I figured I had to hurry but am very happy with the result. This asparagus soup has a beautiful flavor and is very easy to make. I hope you will enjoy.


2 tbsp.  of butter

5 shallots, finely chopped

700g green asparagus

1 leek, white part only, rinsed and chopped

1 medium sized potato, peeled and diced

1.5L chicken stock

125ml (½ cup) half fat crème fraîche


black pepper, coarsely ground


Prepare the asparagus by cutting or snaping off the ends of the stalks where the colour starts to change.  Trim a couple of the asparagus tips to use as garnish. Then chop the remaining green parts of the asparagus into 2,5 cm (1 inch) lengths. Rinse the asparagus thoroughly before cooking.

Melt the butter on medium heat in your stockpot. Gently fry the shallots and leek for around 10 minutes, until soft but without colouring. Stir in the chopped asparagus stalks, put the lid on, and let it sweat for another 10 minutes. Don’t forget to give it a stir now and then.

Pour in your chicken stock, or vegetable stock if you prefer a vegetarian soup, add the diced potato and bring to boil. Once boiling reduce the heat, partially cover your stockpot and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes.

In the meantime blanch the asparagus tips in a pan of boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes then drain and rinse in cold water. Drain on paper towels and reserve for the garnish.

Turn off the heat and let the soup cool down for a few minutes. Then purée the ingredients with a hand blender in the stockpot or puree in batches in your blender.  Return the soup to a clean pan, stir in the crème fraîche and season to taste with salt and coarsely ground pepper.

When ready to serve, bring back to a simmer, ladle in to bowls and garnish with one or several asparagus tips.

Bon Appetite 😉

Chilled Mango Soup

19 Jun

Serves 4-6

Try this fantastically easy recipe for Chilled Mango Soup! This delightful dessert turns out silky smooth and rich-tasting without being too high in calories. It makes a perfect dessert for all age groups and if served with some TLC this simple dessert becomes a very elegant dish 😉


2 large Mangoes, peeled and diced

2 dl (1 cup) Mango juice

Juice of 1 Lime

2 tsp. clear Honey


Greek yoghurt

Fruit in-season

Fresh mint leaves


Peel the mangoes and dice all its flesh. Place the mangoes, mango juice, 2 teaspoons of honey and juice of 1 lime into a blender or a food processor. If you don’t have one of these kitchen appliances, place all ingredients in a bowl and use a hand blender.

Cover and purée the ingredients until smooth. If it turns out a bit too thick, you may want to add a bit more mango juice. Do make sure the soup does not get too thin.

Chill the soup for minimum two hours. You can make this soup up to two days before serving.

When ready to serve, garnish with some Greek  yoghurt, fruit of your choice and fresh mint leaves.

Bon Appetite 😉