This noodle soup offers a chance to pair up foods kids already love with new ones they might be hesitant to try. Individualize according to your family's tastes!
- 1/4 cup high-temperature cooking oil, such as safflower or canola oil
- About 1/2 pound shitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
- About 1/4 pound maitake (hen of the woods) mushrooms, thinly sliced
- 2 carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
- 1 large parsnip, peeled and cut into matchsticks
- 2 medium leeks, trimmed and cut into matchsticks, washed and well-drained
- 1 2-inch piece of fresh ginger root, peeled and grated
- 3-4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 Fresno chili pepper, halved, seeded and thinly sliced
- Salt and black pepper
- 8 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock (64 ounces)
- 4-6 tablespoons Tamari (dark soy sauce), to taste
- 1/4 pound enoki mushrooms, separated
- 1 package soba or 1/2 pound whole wheat spaghetti or thin spaghetti
- Chopped shiso leaf or cilantro, for garnish
- Chopped scallion greens, for garnish
- Heat the oil in a soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high to high heat. Add the shitake and maitake mushrooms. Brown the mushrooms until nutty and fragrant, then add the vegetable matchsticks, ginger, garlic and chili pepper; season lightly with salt and liberally with black pepper. Stir fry for a minute or two, then add the stock and bring the soup to a boil. Season with 4-6 tablespoons of Tamari. Add the soba or spaghetti and cook to just tender. Stir in the enoki mushrooms.
- Using tongs, fill the bowls with noodles, mushrooms and vegetables. Ladle broth over the top and garnish.
- Serve with chopsticks and a large spoon for slurping.