I really like simple food: a few ingredients, quickly mixed together without much fuss, to great effect. A lot of Japanese food, however, requires years to build up the necessary skills, and hours to find the exact ingredients. I have to admit I would not have the patience to attempt making sushi, and I bet it would end up looking like seafood chowder.
This is where Nigel Slater came to the rescue: in his brilliant little book eat he has a recipe for a miso soup with beef and kale that takes minutes to prepare, but still tastes faintly oriental. Job done.
Miso Soup with Beef and Bok Choi (serves 2)
- 1 frying steak
- 1-2 bok choi, the stalks chopped
- 3 spring onions, chopped
- 800ml boiling water
- 1 tbs bouillon powder
- 2 tbs white miso paste
- 1/2 red chili, deseeded and chopped
- noodles, cooked, to taste
In a hot wok, fry the steak in a little oil. When it browns, turn it over and add the white of the spring onions and the bok choi. Brown the other side, then remove the steak from the wok and keep it warm.
Pour the hot water into the pan, then mix in the bouillon powder and miso paste. Add the green leaves of the bok choi and the spring onions as well as the noodles. Simmer but don’t let it boil as it will change the flavour of the miso.
Ladle into bowls, slice the meat into thin strips and add with the chillies.