Japanese Clear Onion Soup

The recipe trials continue!  I’m not a whiz enough to come up with recipes on my own from scratch so I scour books, blogs and Pinterest for recipes that I like the looks of and that are healthy, easy and made with fresh ingredients to try out in my kitchen.  If it’s too hard for me to make or doesn’t taste great, you bet I won’t make it again and I’ll let you know here.  But if it’s easy and delicious, I also love to share that too! I found this delicious dish one night as I was rolling and scrolling through Pinterest.  It comes from www.livingchirpy.com, a blog run by a South African couple (I had no idea about any of this until writing this blog post, but how cool!).

Here’s the picture that caught my attention on Pinterest:

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My inspiration (www.livingchirpy.com)

I can just taste the beloved appetizer of Hibachi restaurants.  I screenshotted the recipe and this weekend when planning for my meals, remembered it was stored in my phone.  The ingredient list is simple and so was preparing it.  But of course, I managed to “mess up” one of the simplest recipes I’ve reviewed so far.

Scores: 

  • Taste: 10 out of 10!
  • Ease: 9 out of 10! (only because I couldn’t follow directions completely)
  • Total time: 43 minutes

Utensils you’ll need

  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Bag for onion and celery remains
  • Soup pot
  • Strainer

Ingredients you’ll need

  • Olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 6 cups of broth of choice
  • Button mushrooms, sliced (to taste)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (let’s be honest, I can only ever manage to get garlic to a chopped stage)
  • Sriracha, coconut aminos to taste

So, I had no wine on hand for this prep.  I did have the Dance Workout station on Spotify which made the kitchen a delightfully upbeat place.  Y’all, if you don’t like cooking, do whatever you can to help you enjoy it a little more. It’s one of the first steps to a healthier lifestyle (and thinner wallet!).

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My favorite kitchen helper

To begin, you’ll first chop the onion, celery and carrots.  Don’t worry too much about how small each gets chopped, we’re not actually going to eat any of these, they’re just for the broth.

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Trifecta for a good broth!

The onions will join the olive oil in the soup pan over medium heat first.  Stir occasionally for about 4 minutes.  Or until you’re tired of waiting and ready to put the other veggies in.  Just be careful not to leave those onions unattended, they will burn!  Add the carrots, celery and garlic to the pot and mix together.  The six cups of broth are added next.

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THIS IS WHERE I SCREWED UP! PAY ATTENTION!

You’re supposed to bring the broth to a boil and then reduce it to simmering for 30 minutes.  DO NOT KEEP IT BOILING AND LAY DOWN TO TAKE A NAP!  A nap is a great idea since there is minimal clean up in this one BUT reduce that heat first.

Just in case you don’t listen to me, here’s what will happen: about half of your broth will evaporate into your kitchen air, leaving maybe a serving and a half of soup left.  DON’T PANIC though, just add the remaining 2 cups of broth from one of the containers :D.  You can let it simmer some more if you want, I just let it warm up a bit.

No harm done.  Next, put a strainer over another pot and pour the broth and veggies into the strainer.  Discard the veggies and examine your first pot of homemade broth!

IMG_0159.jpg I found some pre-sliced mushrooms at the grocery store so I just threw in an appropriate amount for my taste.

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(Sprenkel tip: If you don’t love mushrooms enough to put the whole box in, and likely won’t eat more later, just buy them from the bulk section of the front produce area.) I am not a huge fan of mushrooms so I put in just enough to cover the surface of the soup.  I did not let double layers of mushrooms form.  Keep the heat on low and let the mushrooms cook a bit while you chop some scallions.  Add those babies in and you’re done!

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I am so surprised at the simplicity of this recipe (not at all surprised that I managed to botch it a bit) and how closely the taste matches that of the restaurants’.  The mushrooms remind me a little bit of a pizza which is a weird thing to taste in a Japanese soup but I didn’t mind it.  I’ll make this one again for sure.

(Original recipe said to add Sriracha and/or soy sauce to taste but I forgot!)

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2 thoughts on “Japanese Clear Onion Soup

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