What is vegetable broth? Vegetable cooking water. Homemade vegetable broth usually involves boiling carrots, leeks, celery, herbs (and whatever else you have in the fridge) and then throwing them away. It’s a shame, because boiled carrots taste great. I think we—and by that I basically mean us chefs and cookbook authors—have moved this outdated habit from meat broth and bone sauces to vegetable broth. Needless to say, boiled bones are better to drip a little for a small beef or chicken salad, but then, the bones are not food. But carrots do. In Vietnam, and certainly in other countries as well (but I know a little about Vietnamese cuisine), there is a whole class of broths made from the cooking water of individual types of vegetables: “can”, i.e. carrot can, broccoli can, green onion -kanh – and so on. Canh are used as the basis for simple soups or simply placed on a table with many different dishes.
For the no-waste broth principle to work well, you must salt the vegetable cooking water carefully so that it later withstands a dash of soy sauce or miso paste with the salt it contains. And especially important: cook the vegetables only until you get the desired bite. In the hour that followed, the carrot was giving off perhaps five percent of its total aroma to the broth, but then all that was left was the odorless carrot pulp for the compost. My udon noodle soup is based on this no-waste broth principle, being only slightly refined.
Udon noodle soup without food
- 4 garlic cloves garlic
- 5 cm fresh ginger root Ginger
- 1 hot pepper Chili pepper
- 1 Teaspoon salt pepper salt
- 1 an onion
- 1 deer oil
- 100 J white cabbage cabbage
- 100 J Carrots carrots and carrots
- 1 the Union Coriander (preferably rooted, eg from the Asian store) coriander
- 2 el miso paste miso
- 400 J Udon noodles (cooked and vacuum-packed, from the Asian store, or homemade) Noodles, Udon Noodles
- 500 J Kale, spinach, Swiss chard, Vietnamese water spinach (rao muong), or other leafy greens Cabbage, spinach and chard
- 4 green onion green onion, green onion
- 2 el oil
- 1 a bunch Herbs, such as Asian basil (Rau que) or long-leaf coriander (Rau ngo gai) coriander
- 1 lime (or 2 depending on size) gear
- Vietnamese fish sauce – or soy sauce Fish sauce and soy sauce
- (rice) vinegar with hot pepper rings Vinegar and chili
1. Wash the cilantro and pluck the leaves and use them later with other herbs for garnishing. Peel the garlic cloves and ginger and remove the stalk of the hot pepper. Chop almost everything together with coriander roots and stems, then grind in a mortar and pestle with a teaspoon of salt. Peel the onions and cut into slices.
2. Fry onions and spice paste briefly in 1 tablespoon of oil, pour in 1.2 liters of water and bring to a boil. Cut the white cabbage into strips and remove the very thick leaf veins. Peel and chop the carrots.
3. Add the vegetables to the broth and cook for about 6 minutes, then season with the miso paste to taste.
4. While the broth is simmering, wash and chop the leafy greens and green onions. Remove thick, tough stems – for example from kale – and cut the edible stems diagonally into 3-cm pieces. Cut the green onions into rings. Fry leafy greens in a large skillet or skillet with green onions and 2 tablespoons of oil for 2-4 minutes (cabbage a little longer, spinach water a little longer), stirring constantly.
5. Briefly cook the udon noodles in the soup until the noodles are hot. Pour soup into large bowls – preferably preheated. Spread leafy greens over the pasta. Served with herbs, lemon wedges, fish sauce and spicy rice vinegar.
You can diversify the vegetables in almost any way you like. If you are using vegetables with different cooking times, add them to the broth one at a time. Cannes soup is usually served with rice, but rice noodles work well here too.
You might also like to try these recipes for Udon Noodles with Truffles and Miso Butter or Udon Noodles with Kale and Walnuts?