If there was ever a season where soup sounded good
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The dead of winter in Iowa certainly would one
Not a complaint really, but lately we’ve had all of winter’s words: snow, ice, and sub-zero temps. People walk by all bundled up, the weatherman’s warm-up includes temps above 10 degrees by the end of the week
So when I noticed the beautiful picture of soup on the cover of Bon Appetit, standing in the grocery check-out, I couldn’t help myself. A closer look quickly turning into a full-on thumb-through
“Need to go ahead of me? Yes, of course. “
Fifteen minutes later, I tossed the magazine into my cart, made a quick pass through produce for mustard greens, and headed home.
The allure of the picture proved worthwhile. The soup was lovely, hearty, and flavorful. Unexpected for such a simple recipe
Not to mention easy
The spices, I was worried about, but they were just fine with none overpowering the others. Adding a beautiful depth of flavor to this Asian inspired broth. Sichuan peppercorns proved elusive. I tried our Asian grocery with little success, substituting red peppers in their place.
Mustard greens were new to me. For no reason, in particular, our paths hadn’t crossed. It turns out this bitter, dark green is one of the most nourishing foods one can consume, finding a home under the superfood umbrella
According to the Dr. Oz Show, they’re not only an excellent source of fiber and calcium but are also high in Vitamin K, which is believed to contribute to improved bone health and a decreased risk for developing blood clots.
That night, as we sat down for dinner
“What do you think? Help me put meaningful words to this wonderful creation.”
My husband thought a minute smiled, “Sometimes the best you can say is, it’s awesome.”
To that, I will agree
ps: I upped the original amount of ground pork from 1/2 lb to 1 lb, bringing the nutrient ratios more in line with a balanced meal. Often, I’ll halve a recipe when it’s for just the two of us. But this soup made just the right amount, with a couple of lunch-size portions leftover.
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~ Adapted from Bon Appetit
Spicy Pork and Mustard Green Soup
- 1 lb ground pork
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 tsp finely grated peeled ginger
- 1 tsp spicy red peppers crushed (the original called for Sichuan peppercorns)
- ¾ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- ½ tsp cumin seeds, coarsely chopped
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 bunch mustard greens, torn (about 4 cups)
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced
- 2 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 8 oz wide rice noodles
- Mix pork, garlic, ginger, Sichuan peppercorns, red pepper flakes, and cumin in a medium bowl.
- Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add pork mixture; season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring and breaking up with a spoon, until browned and cooked through, 8–10 minutes.
- Add broth and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until flavors meld, 8–10 minutes.
- Add mustard greens, scallions, soy sauce, and fish sauce and cook, stirring occasionally, until greens are tender, 5–8 minutes; season with salt and black pepper.
- Meanwhile, cook noodles according to package directions; drain.
- Divide noodles among bowls and ladle soup over.