Cornucopia recently celebrated 30 years of amazing food! The party was this past Sunday but we are sure it will continue for the rest of October! Here’s a delicious recipe from James DeBurca, Vegan Chef at Cornucopia.
Miso is one of my all time favourite fermented foods. It is made from a combination of cooked beans, grains, salt and koji that have been aged in wooden casks for six to twenty-four months until they have turned to a smooth paste. It can vary from a dark brown to a lighter whiter paste depending on the beans and grains that have been used. The dark brown misos are the saltiest and heaviest while the whiter coloured ones are a little sweeter and lighter. Miso can be added to many savoury foods such as soups, sauces and stews due to its salty and flavour enhancing properties.
With a little more practice you can even use it in desserts as sweet and salty is an amazing flavour combination. This recipe calls for barley miso. I associate this type of miso with the darker days and colder weather that comes with autumn when I crave more warming foods. Use the stock recipe as a base and try it with different types of miso over the seasons. Adjust the vegetables and grains as the seasons dictate and add a little protein for a more filling broth. This broth recipe can be used as a base while experimenting with the filling ingredients to accommodate what you have at hand and what may be lost at the back of your fridge or cupboard.
Ingredients for the stock:
15mls (1 tablespoon) rapeseed oil
150g onion (1 medium onion)
120g carrot (1 medium carrot)
80g celery (1 medium celery stick)
20g ginger (small thumb-sized piece)
50g garlic (4 to 5 cloves)
1 teaspoon sea salt
5g dried shitake mushrooms (about 3 mushrooms)
10g dried kombu seaweed
2 litres of water
4 tablespoons barley miso
Ingredients for the soup:
250g red peppers (2 medium peppers)
15ml lemon juice
300g sprouting broccoli
100g whole spelt grain
30ml rapeseed oil
Method for the broth:
1 – Boil one litre of water and soak the shitake mushrooms and dried kombu while you prepare the rest of the broth.
2 – Peel the onion and roughly chop it, along with the carrot, celery, ginger, garlic and salt. Heat the 15ml of rapeseed oil in a medium saucepan then add the chopped vegetables to sauté gently over a medium heat. Cover the saucepan with a lid, reduce the heat and cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
3 – After ten minutes, add the soaked mushrooms and kombu along with the water in which they soaked. Bring the stock to a boil then simmer for another fifteen minutes. Now the stock is ready and you will need to remove it from the heat. Strain it through a sieve, preserving the stock water and discarding the cooked vegetables and seaweed. Finish the stock by dissolving the four tablespoons of miso into the stock water. Now you have a basic miso broth.
4 – Place the broth over a very low heat to keep it warmed while you finish preparing the rest of the ingredients. Start by rinsing the spelt under cold water then placing it into a small saucepan and covering with about 600ml of water. Place the saucepan onto a high heat and bring it to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover with a lid and simmer the spelt for about 30 to 35 minutes until it has
softened and cooked thoroughly. Once cooked, strain the water from the spelt and set the cooked spelt aside until needed.
5 – While the spelt is cooking the vegetables can be roasted. Heat your oven to 180c. Prepare the red peppers by halving the peppers and removing the seeds and stalk. Slice the peppers into long thin strips and mix them with 15ml of the rapeseed oil. Place the oiled pepper strips onto a roasting tray and into the pre-heated oven to roast for 15 to 20 minutes. Top, tail and peel the carrots then roughly chop them into bite sized pieces. Coat them with the 15ml of lemon juice and remaining 15mls of rapeseed oil and place them onto a roasting tray. Cover the roasting tray with tinfoil to help the carrots to cook. The carrots will need to be roasted for 25 to 30 minutes but the tinfoil will need to be removed after 15 minutes
cooking to allow the carrots to caramelise lightly for the final 15 or so minutes of roasting. Once the pepper and carrots are cooked they can be removed from the oven and set aside until needed.
6 – Prepare the broccoli by removing some of the tough parts of the stalk then chopping the remaining broccoli florets into medium pieces. It is best to cook the broccoli just before serving. It can be cooked by steaming or blanching the broccoli briefly for two minutes.
Method for assembling the soup
Once all the ingredients are ready, assemble the soup by
ensuring the miso broth is warmed. Divide the cooked red
peppers, carrots, spelt and broccoli into four bowls and pour the
miso broth over each one and serve.