Broccoli and seaweed soup
(Serves four to six)
1 large bunch of broccoli, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
4 cups dashi or chicken broth
1 tsp salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp vegetable oil
2 tbs dried wakame seaweed, soaked to rehydrate
Toasted sesame seeds for garnishing, optional
Cut broccoli stalks from the tops, peel the fibrous outer layer from
the stalks and chop coarsely. Cut the tops into small florets and set
aside. Heat the vegetable oil in a pot. Saute the chopped stalks,
garlic and onion till they are softened, but not browned.
Add the dashi stock (see instructions on the right) and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat.
Reduce the heat, cover and boil gently for 10 minutes. Add the
florets and cook for about 10 minutes or just until the broccoli is
cooked. Switch off the heat.
Puree the mixture in the pot with an immersion blender until smooth.
Heat the blended soup over medium-low heat, stirring often, just until
it is steaming. Turn off the heat and season to taste with salt and
Add softened wakame seaweed into the soup just before serving.
Garnish with toasted sesame seeds, if you prefer.
1 cup loosely packed bonito flakes, from Japanese stores
1 10cm square piece of dried kombu (kelp)
4 cups water
Place the water and kombu in a pot and let the kombu soak for about
15 minutes. Place the pot over medium heat. Just before the water
starts to boil, remove the pot from the heat and scatter the bonito
flakes into it.
After a few minutes, strain the stock through a fine strainer. The
stock can be refrigerated in a tightly covered container for up to four
The stock ingredients can be reused to make niban dashi (second
dashi stock). Add another four cups of water to the used ingredients in
a pot. Place the pot over low heat and boil for 10 minutes. Remove the
pot from the heat and then strain the stock through a fine strainer.
This stock can also be kept, covered, for four days in the refrigerator.