Miso soup is a versatile soup, it can take on any vegetable and it will still come out delicious. When fall comes and the markets start selling kabocha, it is time to grab some home and make this lovely kabocha squash miso soup. Of course if your market don’t sell kabocha, you can use regular pumpkin, or butternut squash too.
Kabocha, dashi, …
Here is what I consider a must have for this soup: kabocha, onion, tofu (silken is best, but firm is okay too), wakame, dashi, and miso paste. Speaking of dashi, the easiest and most convenient is to use dashi stock granules. Remember that regular dashi stock granules has bonito fish, so for strict vegan/vegetarian, look for stock granules that are made out of shiitake and konbu. Or make your own by soaking together 6 cups water with 25 gram dried kombu seaweed and 25 gram dried shiitake mushroom for overnight.
A strainer is miso paste best friend
In my early years of making miso soup, I always had the trouble of diluting my miso paste into the soup. Later, I found out that most Japanese put the miso paste into a little strainer. Then, at the end of the cooking time, they lower the strainer into the hot soup, and stir with a spoon to dilute the paste into the soup. It’s one of my aha moment, and I thought it is a nice little trick to share 🙂
- 6 cups dashi stock (or 6 cups water + 1 tablespoon dashi stock granules) (*)
- 500 gram (~ 1 lb.) kabocha squash, cut into wedges (**)
- ½ onion, diced
- 1 packet (400 gram) silken tofu, diced
- 2 tablespoon dried wakame seaweed, soaked in plenty of cold water to soften
- 6 tablespoon white miso paste (***)
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- Boil together dashi stock, kabocha squash, and onion in a soup pot. Reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until kabocha is tender but still firm, about 10-15 minutes.
- Add silken tofu and wakame to the soup and turn the heat to medium high. Once it boils, turn off the heat.
- Place miso paste in a strainer, then lower the strainer into the hot soup and stir with a spoon until all miso paste in the strainer is incorporated to the soup.
- Serve miso soup hot garnished with thinly sliced scallions.
(**) I don't cut away the skin, but if you prefer, you can remove the skin.
(***) Feel free to use red miso paste or white-red combination miso paste if that's what you have at home.