1 big ol' carrot
1 big parsnip
1 medium or large beet
1 small sweet potato
1 big handful of frozen edamame (green soybeans)
6 cups water
2 medium cloves garlic, julienned into slivers
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ginger, julienned into slivers
1 vegan bouillon cube suitable for 2 cups strong broth (I like Massel's veggie flavor)
1/2-1 teaspoon each sweetener of choice and sesame oil (both optional)
1 package shiritaki noodles, rinsed well, OR 1 package ramen noodles. (cut or break
either into short lengths)
3 tablespoons tamari
3 scallions, sliced thinly in fine diagonal confetti, and half a cucumber, cut into half
one hot chili, cut into finest possible rounds (I used Serrano)
Use a Japanese vegetable cutting widget (looks like a steel cookie cutter) to cut flower-shaped-in-cross-section plugs of your root veggies-- as many as you can get. Or you could cut long v-shaped grooves at regular intervals, lengthwise, to get the same effect. (Put the unfloral looking trimmings in a baggie for impromptu borscht tomorrow--just simmer and liquidize.) Then slice the plugs in cross section on a mandolin slicer or by hand, paper thin. (If they're thicker, just increase their cooking time.) Keep the beets separate from the rest. Lots of multicolored, thin veggie flowers should be your reward!
Actual soup making process (much quicker!):
Bring 6 cups of water to the boil and add garlic, ginger, and bouillon cube (or I guess an equivalent of powder--you want this to be weak as bouillon goes.) Add your sweetener and sesame oil, and throw in edamame. Allow to simmer about 5 minutes, until edamame are firm-tender, and add noodles.
When noodles seem to be done, add all the root veggies except the beets. Simmer about a minute.
Add the beets, cucumber and scallions, and chili and simmer about one more minute. Adjust seasoning with a splash of tamari, grind of black pepper, or a pinch of sweetener if needed-- but keep it on the lightly-salted, delicately spicy side.
This makes incredibly appetizing soup. Pretty, flower-and-half-moon-shaped, multi-colored vegetables crisp and aromatic in rosy colored broth, among short white noodles and punches of green from the edamame, chili, and scallion. This can bring back the (almost) dead.
I won't lie-- what I'm describing took a bunch of prep work, but the result was so lovely and good. You could make it easier by just slicing half moons from the root veggies on a mandolin or by hand, as paper fine as you want them--but halve the quantities, since about half of mine went into the "borscht bag!"