Miso Noodle Bowl (for one)


  Ok 2017, I'm slowly getting to grips with you but we've a ways to go yet.   Amidst computer woes (the bugger has officially given up the ghost) and working on a project that is taking up all my creative energies(more on that soon) this blog has been pushed waaaaay down the bottom of my priority list - and not for the first time either. It seems I'm not exactly great at juggling (literally and metaphorically) so something always suffers in one way or another when I have anything more pressing on my agenda. Granted, I've also been distracted because of a few exciting life developments ... the main one being that we are in the process of buying of first ever home. So. Freakin. Excited. Nomads no more!   I honestly thought the day would never come when I would (make that 'could') own my own house (my own ruddy kitchen!!) - i just felt like too much of a pipedream given our dual self-employed status. And yes, I've been pinning away like a madwoman since our offer was accepted just before Christmas - mood boards a go-go ... white everything with pops of colour. Obviously this was best Christmas gift we could've asked for and we're still pinching ourselves. As for the house itself, it's moderately sized, with a plenty of space for me and Husband to live our simple Cornish existence. It's definitely what I would call a 'fixer-upper' - the thought of moving into a house that's already been decorated to someone else's taste doesn't really appeal to be honest and this place has so much potential. So much!   As soon as we get those keys we'll immediately 'do a Kirsty' and take down the wall that divides the living-room and dining area, creating one huge living space - the kitchen is separate, which I previously thought I would hate but weirdly I am more than fine with it. Perhaps it's because I work from home and spend basically all-day everyday cooking and whatnot, so the thought of having that mental separation between life and work has become increasingly more important to me. Of course, I cook in the evenings too and I'm sure we'll still have a couple of stools out there so my Husband can keep me company.   Our budget is pretty tight so we'll have to be quite clever with our funds if we're to create the awesome space we both envisage ... we'll be on the hunt for good quality bathrooms and kitchens that don't cost the earth but we think we have a few ways to get around it - for example, my Husband reckons he can do a bit of carpentry in the kitchen and my in-laws have already donated their range cooker, which really helps. The bathroom currently boasts a rather exquisite avocado suite (which my Mum loathes, haha) and whilst I know I could make it work we're probably going to sell it on ebay (they're surprisingly desirable) and use that money to give the room a total make-over.   Anyway, you came here for a recipe (not to hear about avocado bathrooms) so let's get this 'Miso Noodle Bowl' underway. One-pot meals are a bit of an obsession of mine. Anything to save on the washing up. The particular bowl is so soothing, it makes for the perfect late January lunch or supper. You could easily make it stretch between two by adding another nest of noodles but in all honesty I inhaled this entire thing by myself in one sitting, so, y'know ...

what you'll need

1 stick of celery

1 carrot

5 chestnut mushrooms

50g sweetcorn kernels

handful cavolo nero or kale

1 heaped tbsp. white miso

2 tbsp. tamari

splash of rice mirin

10g chopped coriander, plus stalks

juice 1/2 lime

1 heaped tsp. coconut oil

1 x nest rice noodles

for the tofu

150g firm tofu

1 heaped tsp. wasabi

1 tbsp. tamari

1 tbsp. olive oil

1/2 tbsp. sesame oil

1/2 tbsp. maple syrup

juice 1/2 lime

to serve

radish - cucumber - coriander - sesame seeds - chilli flakes

Method pre-heat the oven to 200c.

cut the tofu into cubes and transfer to a baking dish. in a separate bowl, whisk the wasabi, olive oil, sesame oil, tamari, maple syrup and lime juice together until totally combined. pour over the tofu. gently toss to combine. set aside for 5 minutes to marinade.

meanwhile, slice the celery and carrot diagonally. heat the coconut oil in a heavy-based saucepan. add the sliced celery and carrot and saute for a minute or two until they begin to soften.

place the tofu in the oven and bake for 25 minutes or until golden and crisp at the edges. shake the dish from time to time to ensure an even bake.

roughly chop or tear the mushrooms and add to pan. stir-fry over a high heat for a few minutes until they release their juices and shrink.

roughly chop the cavolo nero and add to pan. liberally douse the vegetables in tamari and splash over the rice mirin. once the cavolo nero wilts, add the miso paste and 1 litre of freshly boiled water. simmer for 5-7 minutes before adding the sweetcorn, lime juice and chopped coriander. check for seasoning - it may need another splash of tamari.

turn the heat off, add the noodles and cover with a lid. once the noodles have sufficiently softened, transfer to a warmed bowl and top with the baked tofu pieces. garnish with chopped radish, cucumber, coriander leaves and some sesame seeds.