This doenjang soup is so healthy and delicious. It’s vegan too so it will please everyone! If you choose to use shop-bought vegetable stock instead of making the one in the recipe below, the soup will take no time at all and could easily be thrown together in the evening when you get home from work. It does have a coupe of ingredients which are pretty specialist though. The dried kelp for the broth I was able to find in a small local Asian shop but if you can’t find any nearby, you’ll find it online. The doenjang is probably even harder to find but, again, you’ll find it online. It is fermented soy bean paste, like a stronger miso paste. There is a handful of Korean store cupboard ingredients that you should get online and you can throw your hand at any number of Korean dishes then. This doenjang, gochujang (Korean chilli paste) and gochugaru (Korean chilli flakes). Those three are the most commonly used but if you’re buying them online, from an asian website, you might think of adding a tub of chunjang (Korean black bean paste) to the shopping cart too. Sometimes these are sold without the Roman alphabet so remember that the doenjang always comes in brown tubs, and gochujang and chunjang comes in red and black tubs respectively.
- 2 13cm sheets of dried kelp
- 5 dried shiitake mushrooms
- 6cloves of garlic, halved
- 1 onion, halved
- 1 stick of celery, roughly chopped
- 2 spring onions, roughly chopped
- 1.5 litres of water
- 6 chestnut mushrooms, destalked and quartered
- 200g courgette chopped into chunks
- 1 bak choi, chopped and leaves separated from the stalks
- 350g silken tofu, diced
- 6 tbsp doenjang
- 2 spring onions, finely chopped
- 1 fresh, deseeded red chilli, finely sliced
- 2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
- Add all the broth ingredients to a large pot and bring to the boil. Clamp the lid on, turn the heat down to low and cook for about an hour.
- Remove the vegetables from the broth and discard them.
- Turn the heat up to high and add the doenjang and whisk it in.
- Once it's almost boiling, add the mushrooms, courgette and bak choi stalks. Stir, clam the lid on and allow to cook for 5 minutes over a high heat.
- Then add the tofu and bak choi leaves and stir gently for 1 minute.
- Ladle into bowls, scatter the garnishes over and serve.