Saturday, January 19, 2013

First Snow of 2013!

Being a native Virginia Beach, I did not get to enjoy much snow as a kid. I've seen pictures of a blizzard from when I was two years old, but that's about it when it comes to significant snow storms! Naturally, since we moved back to the mountains of southwest virginia, I've been eagerly awaiting that first significant snow fall. Luckily, the weather did not disappoint! Only 4 days after our warm weather hiking adventure, our backyard looked like this:

Kenya certainly had a ball with it!
I had already planned on taking a half day of work to avoid a messy commute home, and lucky for me my husband too got to come home early. It came down hard and accumulated quickly, within a few hours. We took some pictures, played with the dog in the park and then went for an epic night snow run through the Virginia Tech campus and some back wooded trails. In the midst of a hard cycle of training, these "fun" runs are really critical in keeping my motivation alive. It was a slower run, but very invigorating (and good ultra training too).

After all of our fun in the snow, I wanted some hearty soup to warm up. One of my favorite go-to soups in the past has been this:

I've been meaning for a while to make Udon soup from scratch, so finally I had all the ingredients on hand and the snow provided the perfect motivation. Here's what you'll need:

Check out any ethnic grocery story to find Udon noodles, miso paste and wakame. 
To me, this ended up being the asian-vegan version of chicken noodle soup on a cold winter's day... it really hit the spot. As my husband later told me, "I'm learning we don't need to eat out to enjoy gourmet food."


The veggies: 
4-6 white mushrooms, diced
1 onion, diced small
2 carrots, peeled & diced small
2-3 green onions, diced (garnish)

1 - 16oz package Udon noodles
4 tbsp miso Paste
2 tbsp wakame flakes
16oz tofu, diced into squares
8 cups water
Salt & pepper to taste


In a large saucepan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion & sauté about 1 minute. Add remaining vegetables and sauté 1-2 minutes. Add water, followed by the wakame flakes. Allow to simmer for 3-4 minutes. Reduce the heat so the soup is no longer boiling and add the miso, 1 tbsp at a time while stirring thoroughly. Once well mixed, add the udon noodles and stir throughout (they are very long, so you would probably benefit in cutting the in half or thirds before adding the the soup).

If desired, sauté the tofu separately until lightly brown (no need to overcook). Add to the entire batch or each individual bowl.

Garnish with diced green onions, salt & pepper to taste and enjoy!


  1. The snow storm left me stranded in Charlotte for the night haha. The Roanoke airport had pretty bad conditions but all the pictures I saw on campus were stunning...not that Tech's campus isn't always beautiful

  2. So sorry you were stranded!! Hope you made it back ok. Running across the drillfield in the snow at night was a highlight of my life. Indescribable.

  3. That looks like a terrific recipe. I'll have to go shopping for ingredients as the only ones I have on hand are Water, carrots & onion. (Ok,and salt/pepper) I used to have "sea vegetable" sheets on hand, but left them in Baltimore for (some un-named people) to make me some sushi... which sadly never happened!
    Deb C.

  4. I need to make sushi... that's next on my list!


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