Jul 282011

[photo-mustard greens gai choy tofu straw mushroom soup]

Sometimes life can get busy, just a little busy. I know because I recently hosted my in-laws from Singapore for two months. We traveled together locally. We had fun and ate good food, lots of it. Our time together was always filled with doing things that it was not easy to find time to make soup. Things may feel that way, and I’m sure you can relate one way or another. But in moments like these, I rely on my time-saving vacuum soup cooker, or I would go through my mental recipe rolodex for simple, quick, and tasty soup ideas. This time, I went the latter route and got the perfect idea.

In 35 minutes, I cooked a delicious healthy soup that is both appetizing and comforting to enjoy with any sit-down meal. This soup is naturally low in fat and low in calories. It contains nutritious proteins and offers a good amount of fiber for any diet. This great-tasting soup strikes a perfect cord in balancing little time in the kitchen and having a healthy homemade soup to detox a body of too much good (and also bad) restaurant food. A gluten-free version of this soup can also be made by using a gluten-free tofu and soup base. For vegetarians, use a vegetarian soup base.

[photo-mustard greens gai choy tofu straw mushroom soup ingredients]

Simple ingredients for a simple but tasty soup

Recipe: Mustard Greens with Straw Mushroom and Tofu Soup
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
  • 1 cup of water
  • 6 cups of low sodium organic chicken broth* (or vegetable broth for vegetarian version)
  • 1.5 lbs of mustard greens (also called Gai Choy)
  • 1 block of soft or medium-firm tofu**
  • 1 slice of ginger
  • 1 15-oz can of straw mushrooms
  • 1 tsp of sesame or olive oil
  1. Combine the water and broth in a soup pot and bring to a boil. In the meanwhile, soak the mustard greens in cool water before washing. Cut the block of tofu to 1.5 inch cubes.
  2. When the broth boils, add the ginger and tofu. Cover and bring the broth back to a boil. Then simmer on low heat for 25 minutes.
  3. While the soup cooks, wash the mustard greens and cut to 2 inch long pieces. If the stem is thick, cut it in half or thirds to reduce the cook time. Rinse the straw mushroom under cool water and set aside.
  4. When the broth is ready, add the mustard green and straw mushrooms. Push the new ingredients into the soup as much as possible so that they are covered by the broth. Cover the pot and turn up the heat to a medium. Continue boiling for another 10 minutes or until the mustard greens is cooked.
  5. When done, turn off the heat. Add the sesame or olive oil and stir. Sprinkle a small pinch of salt as needed and serve.
* Use a gluten-free chicken broth if you are gluten-intolerant. ** Do not use really soft tofu (labeled as "silky" or "extra-soft"), as they will break apart to tiny pieces in the soup.


Here are other recipes that are also gluten-free, low in fat, low in calories, budget-friendly, easy and quick to make at home. Or check the Recipes by Type on the top right for more ideas.

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  4 Responses to “Mustard Greens with Straw Mushroom and Tofu Soup”

  1. Although I varied from the ingridients, the overall proporations remained the same. Since I’m vegetarian, I went with some veggie stock, but I think low-sodium veggie stock might have been a better option. Generally speaking the end result was good, with the tofu and veggies having a nice taste to it. The instructions for the recipe were very clear and well writ. I can find myself making this soup about once a week! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you Hiko for your compliments on the recipe instructions! I am so happy to hear about your positive story with this recipe. Thank you for sharing! This soup is indeed versatile and can be made into a vegetarian version easily as described in the post. And like you, I generally prefer using low-sodium broth as well.

    Thanks again for sharing your story! I invite you to try another recipe, and feel free to post your feedback again.

  3. I’ve made this several times before. One of my favorite Chinese vegetables and I love tofu. Mine didn’t have mushrooms but I do add sesame oil at the end but also a bit of white pepper in the beginning, probably because I tend to like “hot” foods.

  4. In Heidelberg (where I live), there is a very good Asian store I frequently visit (about twice a week – they already know me :)), and they offer a lot of fresh Asian vegetables that are very hard (or impossible) to get otherwise. I like the mustard greens a lot! And I’ll try to find some of the (for me) more outlandish ingredients as well there!

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