Ok, so I didn't take a flattering photo of this soup. But it's the perfect thing to take to work. See, I try to take super healthy things, and then I end up not eating them and buying some terrible thing on campus which is mostly pasta and sriracha. It's also a pain to remember your lunch every morning, and to take home a dirty container every afternoon.
But this system has been ruling. I have several huge jars (32 oz) from when I went bezerker on pickled turnips or tahini. If I fill two of them with a hearty soup, I've got myself set for four meals. So I bring these on Monday, leave them in the office fridge, heat up individual bowls of them, and bring them home on Friday. Even if I buy a few meals during the week to spice things up, this is so much cheaper/healthier/easier.
So I made several versions of this pan-Asian mess, which I decided to call 'soupy soup.' It really embodies the basics of what good soup should be: simple, flavorful, hearty, versatile. It's obviously a recipe that can be varied as much as you want. The way the recipe below stands, it's rather hot and sour (aka awesome). It also gives me an excuse to use up some of the kimchi that's been languishing in my fridge.
5-6 cloves garlic
1 serrano chili (or less if you don't want spicy)
1.5-in piece ginger
2 stalks celery
1 c sliced mushrooms
4-5 c stock (I used no-beef)
2/3 c kimchi (undrained is great)
1 sheet nori, ripped into little pieces
3 servings of a starch (noodles, rice), cooked and drained
3 servings of a protein (chickpeas, tofu, tempeh), cooked
1. Cook and/or prepare your proteins and starches.2. In a large saucepan, heat oil. Saute ingredients from scallions to mushrooms until soft--depending on what ingredients you choose, you may want to add some later than others.
3. Deglaze with mirin and stock (and/or tamari). Add water or stock.
4. Add in flavorings (kimchi, nori, etc).
5. Add in starches and proteins. Let sit/simmer a few minutes, then serve (or pack up).
Serves about 4.