On the list of comfort foods, chicken noodle soup always ranks. Pork Noodle Soup, not so much. So how did it come to be the Practical Cook’s family favorite? As our friends at Chunky would say, it’s a soup that eats like a meal. Any food that requires chopsticks and a spoon is at least interesting enough to keep eyes on the table.
But truly, Pork Noodle Soup was driven by my CSA. When you have the opportunity to buy several pounds of pork bones for three bucks, who wouldn’t? But then you’ve got several pounds of pork bones. The Practical Cook will get into the base recipe for stocks of all flavors soon. For today, just use the stock you’ve got.
Pork Noodle Soup
olive or peanut oil
2 inch piece of ginger, minced (or ~1/2 teaspoon dried ginger)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
8 to 10 ozs mushrooms, sliced, diced, or chopped (up to you on this one)
1/2 to 1 cup cooked meat or meat substitute (you could use shredded pork, ground pork, chicken, fauxsage crumbles, or just omit)
6-8 cups stock (pork, chicken, or vegetable)
6 ozs or so of Asian noodles (TPC uses Japanese Somen Noodles, but soba or other noodles would work, too)
1/2 bag baby spinach, or other leafy green (I’ve successfully used kale, young collards, mustard greens, etc.)
3 scallions, sliced
soy sauce, lime juice, Siracha to taste
1. Take a medium to large soup pot (at least 4 quarts) and heat a splash of oil over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Briefly saute ginger and garlic (~30 seconds).
2. Add mushrooms and saute until they release their liquid, stirring constantly, around 5 to 7 minutes.
3. Add meat or meat substitute and saute briefly. Then turn heat up to medium high and add stock. Bring to a boil.
4. Add noodles (I use 2 of the 3 groups of noodles in the Somen package per batch of soup), following the package instructions for time to cook them.
5. A minute before the noodles are to be done, add the spinach. (If subbing a less quick-cooking, tougher green, add earlier in the process.)
6. When the noodles are cooked, and the leafy greens are tender, pull off the heat. Add the scallions. Season with soy, lime juice, and Siracha, or pass them at the table.
If you like more stock, add more stock. If you like more noodles, add more noodles. Serve with chopsticks and a spoon. This is comfort food with a twist, great for when you have a cold or just want something different. My kids aren’t big soup eaters, but this one they love. Goes well with a big bowl of edamame.
Here’s the final product:
Coming up next, Can this supper (or dessert) be saved? There is chocolate on the line, so tune in to find out what happens.
Thank you for all of your feedback. If you try a recipe, please feel free to take a picture and send it in: practicalcook at gmail dot com.