By Kyle Suzuki
We worked with our farm chef, Chef Chris Fujimoto, to create a quick, simple, and delicious spin on the classic pork watercress soup for the Foodland 5: Five Ingredient Meals recipe.
For those of you still interested in our classic pork watercress soup recipe make sure to check out our blog post. For those of you who don't have as much time in your day, make sure to check out Chef Chris's recipe below.
This soup is a new take on the classic Pork Watercress Soup many of us grew up eating here in Hawai'i. Instead of the classic soup made with fresh ginger, stock, fresh watercress, and braised pork/salt meat, this soup offers a miso broth, pork watercress meatballs, shiitake mushrooms, and fresh Sumida Farm watercress. The miso broth is comforting and gives a light, but savory depth to the soup. To make this soup quicker to prepare while still offering classic ingredients, ground pork is seasoned with miso and minced watercress to create small meatballs that are tender, far easier to prepare, and still keep pork in this classic soup. Shiitake mushrooms are added in as well for a pleasant umami note and offers a slight chewy texture to contrast the meatballs and crisp, fresh watercress. This is a nice homemade soup perfect for those cold rainy days or whenever you want a quick comforting soup while being unique to the classic recipe.
- Sumida Farm Chef Christopher Fujimoto
- 1 bunch Sumida Farm watercress
- 1/3C minced stems used for meatballs
- 10 pieces medium to large dried whole shiitake mushrooms
- 1 lb. ground pork
- 8C water
- 2T hondashi
- 2t hondashi (for the meatballs)
- 1/4C shiro or aka miso paste
- 1T shiro or aka miso past (for the meatballs)
- 1/4t black pepper
salt/black pepper/shoyu to taste
- Rehydrate shiitake mushrooms by placing them in a microwave safe bowl filled with water to cover the mushrooms. Microwave with a wet paper towel to weigh down the mushroom for 5 minutes or until slightly soft. Once relatively soft, trim the stems off (if desired) and cut mushrooms into thin slices. Set mushrooms aside.
- In a medium bowl, flavor the ground pork with 1T miso, 1T hondashi, and 1/4t black pepper. Mince 1/3C of the Sumida Farm watercress, using the bottom 1/3 of the stems so you can save the tender leafy parts of the watercress for the main soup. Place minced, watercress into the pork mix and combine well. These will be the meatballs inside the soup. Set aside to chill in the fridge.
- In a medium to large pot bring the water to a boil. Add in 2T hondashi until dissolved and then add in 1/4C miso. Allow to dissolve fully then reduce to medium heat so it is no longer at a high boil. Add the sliced mushrooms and allow to cook for 7-10 minutes or until the shiitake are just tender.
- Form the meatballs by making them tablespoon size and forming them into rough balls (mini meatball size). Simply drop the formed meatballs into the soup and allow to cook fully, about 3-4 minutes.
- Cut the remaining 2/3rds of the watercress bunch into 1"-2" length pieces and add in at the very end (1-2 minutes) before serving. Adding the watercress too early in the process dulls the color and takes away the iconic peppery bite for the soup. Serve warm with rice or as a standalone soup. Enjoy!