Resolutions and Soup

New Year’s Day?

I’m certainly not climbing Mt. Fuji. No snow, but it will be insanely cold up there. I do want to catch the first sunrise, though, so I will get up for that (not until 6:51! I can sleep in!).

While I’m shuffling towards the sunrise, I’ll think about which of my New Year’s Resolutions I will be able to keep:

  • Be healthier.
  • Be happier.
  • Seriously study Japanese.
  • Read all of the Harry Potter books before the next movie comes out.
  • Declutter.
  • Be a better dancer.
  • Listen more, talk less.
  • Thank my family and friends.
  • Join a volunteer group.
  • Learn how to do a handstand.

As soon as I see that first bit of sun, I’ll send up good wishes for everyone and then go back inside (hey, I think I can see the sun if I just lean out far enough over my balcony….).

N-chan’s family just gave me some ingredients to make my own osechi ryori, and I am terrifically excited. I will start with white miso soup and pounded rice cakes, 白みそおぞうに.

White Miso Ozoni/白みそおぞうに

This recipe comes from The Heart of Zen Cuisine, which, I am learning, focuses on Kyoto-style recipes. Tokyo-style おぞうに is a different recipe. I’m going to pretend for tomorrow that I live in Kyoto.

For 4 servings:

  • 120 mL/½ cup sweet white miso
  • 800 mL/3 1/3 cups stock
  • 4 generous tablespoons parboiled spinach cut in 4-cm (1½-inch) lengths
  • 4 cakes grilled mochi (pounded rice cake)
  • 4 slivers of lemon peel as garnish
  1. Prepare the miso soup: Dissolve the paste into a small amount of hot stock, then pour this into the stock needed for the recipe. The stock should be simmering, then remove the stock plus miso from the heat as soon as it starts simmering again. Boiling causes the miso soup to lose its aroma and flavor.
  2. Place a cake of mochi and a tablespoon of spinach into each soup bowl, then ladle 200 mL/1 cup into each bowl.
  3. Garnish each with a lemon sliver.

After all that….nap time.

What will you do?

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