With Spring already here, the winter root vegetables and squashes are at a tail end of their seasonality. And one of my favorite winter vegetables, daikon, will soon disappear in the supermarkets until the next winter season. So while I can still find them, I decided to purchase some and make my last daikon soup until the winter season comes again.
If you are unfamiliar with what daikon is, it is a white Asian radish that is also commonly called “turnip” in Asia. There are many varieties of daikon although the flavor is generally mild compared to the small radishes. Daikon is rich in vitamin C and minerals. Daikon is also high in fiber, but low in calories and sodium. In fact, a 3 ounce serving of daikon contains only 18 Calories, while providing 38% of the RDA (Recommended Diet Allowance) for vitamin C. Check out our daikon page in the Common Ingredients section to learn more nutritional, preparation, and buying tips on daikon.
Once you’ve bought your daikon, try this delicious daikon tofu soup recipe passed down from my father. It is really simple to make and very light and healthy. A perfect soup to have in early Spring. From a Chinese medicine perspective, this soup is also beneficial for those with too much body heat from a lack of sleep.
This soup can also be easily prepared with a convenient thermal soup pot. On the night before, prepare all soup ingredients. Before you leave for work the next morning, boil 10 cups of water in a thermal pot. Add in all ingredients and bring it back to a boil again on the stove. Transfer the pot into its thermal container. When you return from work, you’ll have hot delicious soup ready. Sprinkle a small pinch of salt to season before serving.
- 1 daikon (about 1 lb)
- 1 carrot
- 1 block of medium-firm tofu, sliced
- 1.5 lb of lean pork
- 4 dried oysters
- 2 - 3 slices of ginger
- 10 cups of water
- few pinches of salt
- Rinse and soak the dried oysters in cold water.
- Cut the pork to 3 inch chunks. Sprinkle on 2 pinches of salt and let marinate while getting a small pot of water boiling to blanch the meat.
- After blanching, put the pork into a large pot, and add 10 cups of water to it (see note # 3 below). Bring it to a boil. In the meanwhile, peel and cut the daikon and carrot to ½ inch thick slices.
- When the large pot boils, put all ingredients in except for the tofu. Cover and cook under high heat for a few minutes until the pot boils again. Turn down the heat and simmer on low heat for 1 hour 15 minutes. Set the timer.
- When the timer signals, add the tofu to the pot. Set the timer and cook for another 45 minutes.