I have a few soba noodle recipes in my repertoire that I cook a lot of and this is the newest, and lately, the most popular addition to that. The original idea was to make it semi-dry—like a pad thai consistency—but the flavours turned out too bold and not in a good way. The miso overpowered the entire dish and I couldn’t taste the nuttiness of the noodles that it coated. I added coconut milk to try and salvage it, and liked the addition of it so much that it’s now become a part of our regular meal rotation.

Miso and coconut are an odd pairing in the conventional sense. Japanese dishes almost never have coconut in them in any form, which makes this more of a South-East Asian influence on an otherwise Japanese flavour combination. (Not a fan of the word ‘fusion’, so let’s not go there).

Japanese food relies greatly on miso paste for its umami savoriness. Although Thai food doesn’t have one explicit ingredient in that sense, it aggregates fish sauce, dried shrimp paste, spices and jaggery/sugar to create its own umami flavouring. Both—although entirely different in terms of ingredients used—have a profile that work with coconut milk. And as is proof of this recipe being posted on here, I’m very happy to report that it didn’t lead me astray.

  

 

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MISO & COCONUT SOUP WITH SOBA NOODLES AND SILKEN TOFU
Servings
2
Ingredients
  • 150 grams soba noodles
  • 150 grams silken tofu
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • A small handful of spring onion tops
  • Sesame seeds, for garnish
SOUP:
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken stock (or 1 stock cube dissolved in 1 1/2 cups of water)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, minced
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • Salt, if required
Servings
2
Ingredients
  • 150 grams soba noodles
  • 150 grams silken tofu
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • A small handful of spring onion tops
  • Sesame seeds, for garnish
SOUP:
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken stock (or 1 stock cube dissolved in 1 1/2 cups of water)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, minced
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • Salt, if required
Instructions
  1. Cook noodles according to packet instructions, drain, and set aside. While the noodles are still hot, add sesame oil and toss to combine.
  2. Add miso paste and half the amount of stock to a bowl. Stir together until it’s a smooth paste.
  3. In a pot, add the remaining stock, minced ginger, garlic, dried chilli flakes and the miso and stock mixture. Cook over a medium flame for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Add the coconut milk at this stage and gently heat through, without letting it boil. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Adjust seasoning.
  5. To serve, divide the noodles between bowls. Pour over the broth and add tofu to each bowl. Garnish with a few spring onions and sesame seeds. Can be served hot or at room temperature.

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