Two weeks ago we had a mildly hectic week planning for Food Blogger Camp and prepping for the Multimedia Presentation that we were giving. Normally, there’s a checklist of things to finish up before we head out and at the top of the itinerary is to cease all grocery shopping and eat everything left in the fridge. Being more attentive to eat leftovers and not wasting food has saved us a nice sum of money that went towards building new raised vegetable beds!
Hooray for cutting back on excess and being rewarded with a new garden project. Yippee! More dirt.
The jam-packed freezer is always our first target. It’s our Alaskan-winter cache of overstocked edibles and our emergency vault of food that’s packed with frozen stocks, plenty of meats, and basil pesto from Summer garden explosions. So we turned to the freezer when the fridge was at a bare minimum and pulled out the ever present back up bag of edamame (soy beans). Having a back-up, emergency bag of Edamame soybeans is as essential as stocking the extra quart of chocolate ice cream. Hey, I’m a huge fan of fiber-rich foods and the chocolate ice cream is my reward for being such good girl. Fiber and chocolate are my ying/yang munchies.
Edamame or soybeans are hearty and full of firm, nutty bite when eaten whole. But what about its flavor as a soybean soup? I’ve always had a munching love affair with Japanese edamame (soybeans) ever since my days of vegetarianism (I’ll share this vegetarian turned carnivore story later). Blending it up with some fresh ginger and stock sounded so simple and satisfying. The smooth river of delicate green edamame liquid that flowed from the blender proved another reason why soybeans are so versatile and healthy.
sauteed edamame soy beans then simmered in stock
The fresh bite of ginger in the soybean soup made it fragrant and tingly with a bright nose of ginger root. The thick, clingly soup is filling and even more satisfying when dipped with some crusty slices of toasted bread. Even a small bowl of edamame soup felt gratifying and fulfilling enough to make a complete dinner.
And oh, bacon makes this soup soooo good! The slow browning of simple shallots, garlic and ginger are all it takes to make this soybean soup loaded with flavor. But if you have a open love for all things pork (that’s me!), especially bacon (double me!), then add in some thick slices for a huge explosion of extra fatty flavor. Fat is good. Flavor is better. And bacon is bad-ass. More bacon please!
Getting the photograph. This edamame (soybean) soup is even better the next day when all the flavors have given time to settle in. When we shot the photograph, we thought it would be of interest to those interested in honing their photography craft. We always get questions on how we achieve certain food shots, so when we have time, we’ll try to take more pictures of the setup during the cooking process.
Here’s the photography post (on our Photography site) showinghow we took this edamame soup photograph and below is the recipe for this great soybean recipe.
don’t be deceived – this delicate looking soybean soup is packed with flavor and fiber!
Soy Bean Soup Recipe
Yield: Serves 3-4
Total Time: 30 Minutes
For vegetarians, use vegetable stock. For everyone else, use bacon and stock.
- 1 T Butter
- 1 t Sesame Oil
- 2 T Shallots, finely minced
- 1/2 T Garlic (2 cloves), crushed
- 1 1/2 T Ginger (2" knob), finely grated or crushed
- optional- 2 pieces Bacon, diced
- 1 pkg Soy Beans (16oz)
- 3 c Chicken or Vegetable Broth (add more for a lighter, more liquidy soup)
- 1 1/2 T Soy Sauce
- fresh cracked pepper and thinly sliced green onion for finish & garnish
- On medium heat, melt butter with sesame oil in a sauce pan. (If using bacon, omit the butter and fry the bacon and sesame oil till the fat is rendered) Add shallots, garlic and ginger. Sauté until lightly golden and fragrant.
- Add soy beans, broth and soy sauce. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until soy beans are tender (how fast or slow you simmer will affect the thickness of the soup. It is always a good idea to have extra broth in case you boil off too much liquid.)
- Put everything into a blender and puree until smooth. Return to sauce pan to keep warm. Serve with fresh cracked pepper on top of each bowl and the thinly sliced green onion. Add a light stream of sesame oil or a touch of sour cream or creme fraiche for extra tastiness.
- If the soup is too thick for you, add more broth until it reaches your desired consistency.