- Cover the dried mushrooms with water and reconstitute for 20-30 minutes. In a separate bowl, reconstitute the wakame for 3-4 minutes.
- Slice the mushrooms into small pieces, discarding the stem which is not edible. If you use wakame strips, remove the center rib and discard, then slice the wakame. I prefer the flakes since the rib is already removed.
- Heat the oil in a soup pan and add leeks or onion. Sauté over medium high heat for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for another minute or two. Next add the mushrooms and continue sautéing.
- Add the water and bring to a boil. Add wakame, carrot, turnip, and greens and cover and simmer 8-10 minutes.
- Next add the grated ginger.
- Put the miso in a cup and dissolve with some of the hot soup stock. Add to the soup and simmer gently (important not to boil) for 3 more minutes. Turn off heat and serve with a garnish of chopped scallions.
Note – many popular cookbooks advocate using excessive amounts of miso. This extremely health-supportive food can work against you when you use too much. The general rule is 1/2 to 1 teaspoon miso per cup of liquid in soup. Read Salt: Friend or Foe for more information about miso.
Dried Shiitake strengthen, detoxify, and restore. They have proven pharmacological effects as immune regulators and antiviral and anti-tumor agents, and they improve the cardiovascular system. Shiitake treats diseases involving depressed immune function, including cancer, AIDS, environmental allergies, Candida infections, and frequent colds and flu. They soothe bronchial inflammation and reduce chronic high cholesterol.
Top quality shiitake mushrooms are called donko and are more costly because they are grown outdoors on hardwood. Most commercial shiitake, especially those found in discount stores, are grown in a few weeks in warm conditions on artificial substrate & have weak therapeutic benefit. Food is truly medicine when you buy quality and understand how to use it.
Miso is low in calories and fat, and is a medicinal food with numerous health benefits. Miso contains lactic acid, bacteria and enzymes which aid digestion and food assimilation. Studies show that those who regularly use miso suffer significantly less from cancer and heart disease.
It contains Amino acids, B12, minerals (including calcium, iron). Miso helps protect the body against radiation and heavy metal poisoning. Studies show those who eat miso soup daily have fewer cases of certain types of cancer. Miso reduces the risk of coronary heart disease; protects cells from free radicals and aging. The lactobacillus fermentation increases the quantity, availability, digestibility and assimilability of nutrients.
Miso is effective in reducing chronic pain. Breaks down and discharges cholesterol, neutralizes the effects of smoking and environmental pollution, alkalizes the blood, prevents radiation sickness, neutralizes the effects of chemicals, medicines, and a poor diet, and strengthens blood quality.
South River Miso is my favorite because it is made the traditional way that gives it therapeutic benefit. Miso Master is another good brand.
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