Miso Soup & Sea Vegetables

The sea vegetable in this soup is detoxifying and cleaning for the body.  Seaweed is ‘cold’ in nature and its main action is that of clearing heat and transforming phlegm nodules.  This action of reducing phlegm-heat is connected to seaweed ability to promote urination, which is an avenue to guide the hot-phlegm out of the body.  Both of these functions are cleaning and clearing in nature.  Modern research for seaweed has shown it has the ability to lower cholesterol (phlegm plaques), which is related to the cleaning action seaweed has on the body.  Further, seaweed can bind with heavy metals (such as mercury and lead) and guide them out of the body.  This last bit of modern research has prompted the use of various species of sea vegetables for detoxifying radioactive contamination.  Try to buy seaweed that comes from healthy seas, since seaweed detoxifies the oceans too and can absorb toxins from the ocean.

Caution: Use seaweed carefully with cold, yang-deficient conditions because this sea vegetable is cold and can reduce the digestive fire if over eaten.  To reduce this tendency, eat seaweeds along with warming foods such as ginger which will counter-balance the cold quality.

Ingredients for Wade’s “No Nonsense” Miso Soup:

•                15 fresh Shiitake mushrooms

•                1 package of Enoki mushrooms

•                ½ cup of “Aka” (Red) Miso paste

•                8 cups water

•                3  six inch pieces dried kelp (kombu)

•                1 cup bonito flakes in tea bag

•                2 TBS of Mizhiu White Rice Wine

•                ¼ cup of wakame dried seaweed flakes

•                1 cup of thinly chopped green onions (scallions) to garnish

Directions:

In a large soup pot over medium heat add 8 cups of water and add the 3 strips of kombu kelp and bonito flakes (in tea bag).  Let it sit for about 30-45 min. Take out kombu and bonito flakes and add rice wine and stir.  Add the Shiitake mushrooms along with Enoki mushrooms and gently stir in the miso paste in the water until broken apart.  Alternatively, you can use a wire strainer to help thin the miso, by pushing the miso through the wire mesh of the strainer into the water of the soup.  Cook for about 15 min on medium high.  Congratulations!  Now, its ready to serve and don’t forget to garnish the soup with fresh green onion scallions as you serve your guests.

Alternative recipes involve the addition of small squares of tofu which absorbs the flavors of the soup and provides a good source of protein.

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2 Comments »

  1. Learning about seaweed is a whole world unto itself. It is pretty amazing food, but you have to try out many varieties to find what works best in your body and your recipes. The mineral content is phenomenal. Again, Utilizing just a few Japanese foods like seaweed and bancha would do us all alot of good! Jodi

    Comment by Jodi Host — July 12, 2013 @ 9:19 pm

  2. On one source I saw seaweed referred to as Laminaria. Is this what is used at times in Labor and Delivery to open the cervix? Is this because of the softening of nodules function?

    Comment by Cynthia Lester — July 22, 2013 @ 11:41 am

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