SPICED TOFU CABBAGE SOUP
Lots of solids. Perfect restaurant soup. Holds well and keeps longer than most. There’s something reminiscent of a gelled consume about this cabbage soup. Soothing. Wanting more!
Inexpensive. Yes, lots of seasonings, but most restaurants should have these on hand.
Makes 25 cups
Make Spiced Tofu first:
2, 19 oz. containers firm water-packed tofu, rinsed and cut into cubes – I used House Foods brand
6 c. water
1 c. white vinegar
2 T. OLD BAY RUB seasoning
1 T. mild Hungarian paprika
1 T. turmeric
1 T. cumin
1 T. onion powder
2 T. garlic powder
1 t. dried thyme
2 t. ground allspice
1/2 t. red cayenne pepper
1/2 t. black pepper
1/4 c. light brown sugar
1 T. liquid smoke
1/3 c. white miso – I used Westbrae brand
1/2 c. tomato paste
5 T. vegan yeast (aka nutritional yeast)
1/3 c. Liquid Aminos by BRAGG – soy sauce substitute – why? – because that’s what I had on hand – use soy sauce if that’s what you have
1 t. salt plus to taste
2 t. guar gum
2 t. xanthan gum
Combine all ingredients, except guar and xanthan gum powders, in large pot. Bring to soft boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for about 1 hour.
Sift gum powders onto surface of broth, then whisk rapidly with short strokes till dissolved. Then using whisk as a masher, mash tofu, breaking it into pieces. You don’t have to break every piece, since that will happen when you stir it all into the soup.
Set aside till ready to use.
10 c. water
2 T. salt
3 lbs. green cabbage – remove soiled leaves, core and cut into approx. 1 inch pieces
1 jumbo sweet onion, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch squares
3 c. sliced celery including some leaves if you have them, 1/2 inch wide pieces
zest and juice of 2 oranges
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 T. margarine
1 T. sesame oil
Combine all cabbage soup ingredients, except olive oil, margarine, sesame oil (which we’ll add at the end), in extra-large pot. Turn heat to medium-high, bring to slow boil, cover and cook 10 minutes.
Stir, check celery for doneness. I cooked it another 10 minutes, covered, at medium-low heat. The celery segments are larger than usual, so they take longer to cook through. We don’t want mush, but this isn’t a stir-fry either.
Ladle all of Spiced Tofu into cabbage pot. Stir well.
Adjust for salt, pepper, celery seed and dried thyme. That’s how soups are, especially large ones, that usually require seasoning adjustments near the end.
Now comes the fat.
Add: olive oil, margarine and sesame oil.
Stir the oils in. Cook on medium-low heat, uncovered, for another 20 minutes or so.
Serve immediately, or wait till the soup cools to room temperature, then pack in covered containers and refrigerate for service later.
Notes: Great soup with great flavors. And no, we didn’t need every color of vegetable. Perfect the way it is. Yet, the next day it was even more perfect.
It makes a lot of soup, so assess the size of your cooking pots before you start, making sure one is big enough. If not, cut the recipe in half.
By simmering the tofu in the marinade for 1 hour, the flavors of the marinade really do permeate the tofu. But it needs that length of time cooking in the marinade to achieve that. Later, when added to the soup, the tofu cubes stay flavorful.