soup

Yes! We are back after the longest time! Hope everyone is still doing well!

Today, we are looking at a manga with a very interesting name – It is Me to Fill the Stomach of the Sister. The manga follows two step-siblings who are living alone together after their parents pass away, and help each other out by taking turns to prepare their daily meals. There doesn’t seem to be an English scanlation of this manga yet, but I’m currently borrowing from a Chinese scanlation group. 

It is Me to Fill the Stomach of the Sister - Pork Macaroni soup It is Me to Fill the Stomach of the Sister - Pork Macaroni soup

In general, the recipes are presented in a stream-of-consciousness style, narrated by the chef of the moment. For today’s recipe, I am using a very simple recipe that Shinobu calls “The Delicious Soup that We Didn’t Fuss Over”. The weird name is because he touts it as a soup that takes very little preparation and pot-watching, which I kind of get… But well, *I* am calling it the Pork Macaroni Soup.

Today’s recipe only has a few ingredients, which you can refer to in the recipe card below. Today, I was cooking for four, so I “doubled” the recipe – the manga however was pretty vague about certain quantities (such as the amount of meat), so for the most part, I’m also fudging my own proportions. 

We start off by chopping lots of vegetables. With regards to the cabbage that was used, my preference for cabbage would be the wongbok, also known as the White Chinese Cabbage. However, when I got to the supermarket this morning, the only wongboks available were larger than my head, so I decided to get the smaller Round Chinese Cabbage instead. 

vegetables

Lots of chopped vegetables goodness!

After the slicing and dicing, it was time to scald the pork ribs before cooking. Scalding pork ribs is a way to help keep the soup clear and scum-free. To scald, first rinse your ribs. Prepare a pot of boiling water. Put the ribs into pot for a minute or two until colour changes. Retrieve ribs, rinse again to clean off the blood and other scummy matter. Discard water, and done! 

scalded

Scalded ribs – it’s ok if the meat is still a little pink.

After you’re done with scalding, all your meat and vegetables go into a pot with enough water for your soup and an appropriate amount of bouillon cube to your taste. As usual, the Japanese penchant for bouillon amazes me; the recipe calls for 5 cubes for 8 cups of water. I made a very large pot and used 6 cubes, with a little bit of soy sauce to taste. Your results may vary, please adjust accordingly. Bring the pot to a rolling boil, and when it’s boiling, bring it down to a simmer and leave it be for 15-20 minutes. 

The next step, according to the manga, is to cook the pasta directly in the soup. This will be ideal if you did not intend to have leftovers, as it means you have fewer pots to wash. However, because I did prepare for leftovers, I cooked my pasta separately so that the soup could be reheated later without having to worry about horrible, mushy pasta. Rather than macaroni, I also prepared fusili, as I prefer its texture. 

Because I had cooked the pasta in advance, all I did was to place the pasta in a deep bowl before spooning out my soup with the vegetables and meat over. 

soup2

Prepared bowls of soup and pasta!

As you can see, lots of delicious veggies, although I think the colour could have been a little bit more appetising. Please note also that I had added to the meat in the pot by making some minced pork meatballs.

Verdict:

This was lunch for my two very picky-eating parents, who, in typical Asian parent fashion, have fairly barbed criticisms about any of my attempts to cook. Well, I am proud to say that they finished up every bit of whatever was in their bowl today. My mother was especially surprised by my father who ate up every bit of the cabbage, because according to her, he hates cabbage (well, I didn’t know that).

The cabbage, carrots and onions did give the soup a vegetable sweetness, which I thoroughly enjoyed. My soup could have boiled longer, as the ribs were not tender enough (I think I didn’t give it enough time, but you can let it go longer!). The cabbage was the right texture, very tender and sweet. 

An easy recipe for anybody at all, and it’s something nice and light on the stomach, which as it turns out, was perfect as my father needed something a little less heavy and oily this afternoon.

It is Me to Fill the Stomach of The Sister's Pork Macaroni Soup
Serves 2
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Ingredients
  1. 1 carrot
  2. 1 onion
  3. 1/2 cabbage
  4. Pork Ribs
  5. 5 bouillon cubes
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
Preparation of ingredients
  1. Chop the carrot into pieces that are about 3cm in length, then quarter each piece.
  2. Halve an onion, and slice along the layers.
  3. Remove core of cabbage and chop into four pieces.
  4. After seasoning the ribs with salt and pepper, scald the ribs in boiling water. Discard water.
Cooking the soup
  1. Place 8 cups of water in a pot. Add 5 bouillon cubes to the water.
  2. Place all ingredients into the pot, cover and bring to boil.
  3. After it comes to a rolling boil, let simmer for 15 mins.
  4. After 15 mins, add macaroni to the pot and cook until al dente.
  5. Salt and pepper to taste.
Adapted from It is Me to Fill the Stomach of The Sister
Adapted from It is Me to Fill the Stomach of The Sister
The Manga Menu http://mangamenu.mintroses.com/

 

 

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