Light Asian Vegetable Soup

Light Asian Vegetable Soup

A majority of Americans at best have no idea what to do with beef bones, and at worst are totally grossed out by them. I happen to LOVE them. I use bone broth in something almost every day. Simply slow cooking the bones with their marrow and connective tissue in water for about ~10 hours will pull magnesium, zinc, manganese, calcium, phosphorus, selenium, iron, vitamin A, and fatty acids from them. The connective tissue will pull collagen, which contains myriad amino acids, the building blocks of soft tissue. All the odd bits together create an ultra nutritious soup and sauce base (or to just drink alone because it’s delicious). Rainshadow “soup bones” happen to be pretty special, because they are also packed with meat. They really lend themselves to ‘fall of the bone’ recipes. I made a few recipes in the last couple of weeks that highlight this gorgeous and underutilized part of the animal.

Light Asian Vegetable Soup
(serves 2-3)

There are a million ways to make this soup, and the hearty nature of asian vegetables that thrive at Rainshadow has me making some rendition of this about once a week. Considering the early season CSA choy varieties, radishes, and daikon recently, I knew I needed to make this.

*As I said above, start with a package of bones and about 6-8 cups of water depending on how condensed you would like the broth. I tend to use less water because it is more storage efficient. I store the broth as a solid and I can add more water as I use it in recipes. Unless I know exactly what I will be using it for, I don’t season it either, minus a generous pinch of salt to help break down the tissue. This recipe does not call for the meat on the bones, but don’t waste it! Pull the bones out and any large cartilage or fat and toss those bits. Break down the meat and save it in the fridge for another recipe (You can even add the meat to the soup to make it heartier, if that suits you!) Strain the broth into a large mason jar through a fine sieve and it will keep for weeks in the fridge. I just pull out a quart at a time for any recipes throughout the week.

For the Light Asian Vegetable Soup

1 quart condensed bone broth
1 bunch radishes (about 5 oz), quartered and sliced
4 oz shiitake mushrooms, sliced
One bunch vivid choy stems, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ (or more if you can handle spice) serrano pepper, minced
3 large green onions, sliced
A handful of bonito flakes (about a half gram)
3 Tbsp. fish sauce
Squeeze of lime and purple basil leaves for optional garnish

  1. Add the condensed bone broth to the pan, along with the radishes, mushrooms, garlic, serrano, fish sauce and bonito flakes. Cook on medium high heat for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add chopped choy stems (reserve the leaves for another recipe) and white parts of the green onions and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  3. Serve with chopped purple basil, the green parts of the green onions, and a squeeze of lime to complete the spicy, salty, sour, herbaceous profile.