Hokkaido pumpkin miso soup

This Hokkaido pumpkin miso soup is super tasty, healthy (because of the gut healing properties and many valuable nutrients it contains) and easy to make. We eat it a lot and the taste reminds me so much of one of my favorite countries: Japan! Who has been there??

We eat it a lot, this Hokkaido pumpkin miso soup. And the taste reminds me so much of one of my favorite countries: Japan! Who has been there?? I (Robien) have been a few times, and love it so much. There is something really calm about that country. I often wonder how that works, because nature there is wild, with the ocean and high volcanic mountains, and there is an overload of people in certain places. I think it’s something in the Japanese culture. There really is something zen about how people interact there. I mean, I’m used to people pushing each other forward on the station platforms to get in the train as fast as possible and preferably first. And then there’s Japan: neat lines in exactly in front of each train door. Love it! And I can’t wait to go back there.

 

For me, the best thing in Japan is visiting my friends in Hokkaido and to snowboard together. And the second best thing: trying things that are completely normal in Japan, but not for me. Therefore I’m always resistant to do them because it’s out of my comfort zone. I don’t really know how to behave in a ryokan – a traditional Japanese inn, but I want to do it right. I love sleeping in the beds on the tatami-matted floors. But I don’t really know how the communal bathing works (my friends in Hokkaido took me to several amazing onsens – Japanese hot springs, and I learned the rules there – sort of). I also don’t know how to order ramen, especially when there is a ticket machine. Even if I did know, I’m way too slow (I have had queues appear behind me). Japanese people can order and eat very quickly. And there we go again, I really don’t know how I always feel so calm there, since many things are so fast.

 

But let’s talk about Japanese food because that is something special, isn’t it? It is definitely something I sometimes love and sometimes despise. I love tamari (FYI, I never eat ‘normal’ soy sauce since it contains wheat, which I’m allergic to). I also love ume su, a vinegary flavoring made from fermented ume fruits, comparable to apricots or plums. But I really can’t come near nattō, made from fermented soybeans. My friends there love it and buy it as a snack after snowboarding. But I honestly get queasy from the smell alone. Another thing I find difficult is a traditional Japanese breakfast. It’s interesting, but not my thing. Please give me my smoothie bowls!

 

Anyway, back to the stuff I love. I love miso! Miso is, like nattō, made from fermented soybeans, but there are many ways to ferment, thank god. Because of the fermentation, it is really healthy for your gut (if you are interested in gut health, you should look into our program Reset Your Health). There are many ways to use miso in your diet. Below, I will share one of my favorite soups in which I use it: Hokkaido pumpkin miso soup. I prefer a lighter version of miso for this recipe. As you may know, miso comes in various colours. To me, they all look brown. But in the stores, you will see white, yellow, red, brown and dark brown miso. The lighter the color, the sweeter and milder it usually tastes. Darker miso is often saltier, richer, has a sharper taste. You should try different ones if you’re interested. But make sure to always choose a paste, organic (so non-GMO) and unpasteurized

 

 

Talking about Japan, I looked through my pictures and will show you some. The first one: my favorite ryokan in Tokyo; a calm idyllic place. If you are there, you would never guess you are in Tokyo. The middle one: me doing something I used to do all the time: visiting friends all over the world who live in snowboard meccas, in this case: Niseko. The one on the right: me trying to be grateful for the food 😉 – a typical Japanese breakfast in a ryokan in Tsumago.

HOKKAIDO PUMPKIN SOUP

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Quantity: 2 or 3 for dinner, 4 as a starter
Equipment: blender

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup quinoa (another lovely option: 75 g pp buckwheat noodles)
  • 1 medium Hokkaido pumpkin (or another one of your choice)
  • 3 cup broth OR water*
  • 1 – 2 tbsp white/light miso
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh ginger

TOPPINGS

  • sesame seeds
  • seaweed (dried flakes)
  • other options are for example mushrooms of our choice (tip: sautéed shiitakes, very good), spring onions or an egg (raw if you dare)

INSTRUCTIONS HOKKAIDO PUMPKIN MISO SOUP

  1. Wash or brush the pumpkin. Do it really well, since you will be eating the skin, and cut into chunks.
  2. Put the pumpkin in a large pot and add the broth or water. Bring to a boil, and reduce to simmer for about 15 minutes, until the pumpkin is ready.
  3. Cook the quinoa according to the instructions on the package (if you want to know how to prepare grains in a way your gut loves and maximizes the nutritional values, check out our program Reset Your Health).
  4. Lightly toast sesame seeds.
  5. Transfer the soup to a blender, and blend until smooth. Add more water if necessary (according to how thick you want the soup). Then, add the miso and ginger, and blend again until smooth. Taste and see if it needs any seasoning to your liking. Transfer back to the pot (never bring it to a boil after you’ve added the miso since that ruins the gut loving qualities of the miso) or serve straight away with the toppings.

 

*Choosing between water or broth: miso itself can be used as a broth, so choosing a broth and miso is double up. But if we’re able to visit our local organic butcher, we do use broth for extra gut loving ingredients. The one we buy isn’t salted (miso contains salt). Or sometimes we buy this Dutch brand (and add some water). It does contain a little salt, but since we’re not using that much miso, it’s not too much.

Have you checked out our new program, Reset Your Health? It’s all about your gut, about metabolism, about the basis of feeling good and healthy. Within 3 weeks you can completely heal and reset your gut, and with that, your immune system, your health!

 

More information here. 

Listen Today’s mind-blowingly easy hummus recipe

I remember the day when a friend introduced me to hummus, I remember thinking that it looked a bit weird and had a funny color. If she hadn’t convinced me, I probably wouldn’t even have tried it. But now I LOVE hummus. Whenever I make hummus, I pretty much add it to any meal I eat: salads, as a dip for veggies, sandwiches, or with some oven-baked sweet potatoes. The options are endless.
Since that friend introduced me to hummus, I’ve tried lots of different recipes and believe I’ve finally perfected my favorite easy hummus recipe. In a way that’s easy, quick and delicious. I seriously can eat it by the spoonful after making it.

 

HUMMUS AND GUT HEALTH

And the great thing is, it’s not only tasty to eat, but it’s also a very healthy thing to add to your diet, especially when you make it yourself. Chickpeas are high in fiber and therefore doing amazing things for our gut health. It promotes digestive health and feeds your good gut bacteria. And if your gut is in a healthy state, your immune system is a healthy state. If you’re worried about legumes causing gas or making you feel bloated, that’s because of the anti-nutrients they contain. If that’s the case with you, if you feel bloated after eating legumes, the state of your gut can be better! In that case, we recommend you to watch our free workshop ‘Reset Your Health’ about the most important thing you can do for your health: supporting your gut. We all do more harm than good nowadays, without even knowing it. So we all need to help our gut. 

Hummus also provides a good mix of micronutrients, the vitamins and minerals that help to keep all your body’s systems running smoothly. It contains a lot of B-vitamins and especially folate (B9). Folate reduces the risk of heart disease, promotes the health and function of the brain, encourages a positive mood, slows down the ageing process, and promotes a healthy pregnancy, just name a few things. But hummus is also rich in minerals like iron, phosphorus, magnesium, copper and manganese. Minerals are needed to help your body grow, develop and to stay healthy.

 

THE GOOD KIND OF FAT

And lastly, it contains extra virgin cold pressed olive oil. Extra virgin cold pressed olive oil is a monounsaturated fat and full of antioxidants. Monounsaturated fat helps to improve your cholesterol levels and lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. The oil used in most of the hummus you buy in the store (rapeseed, palm, sunflower) are full of omega-6. The ‘problem’ with hummus is, that it’s easy to eat a lot of it. And you don’t want to eat too much omega-6. You need it, but not in big quantities and we often eat too much of it. Omega-9 on the other hand, in olive oil, is something you can eat a lot of.

Enough reasons to give this recipe a go!

Preparation time: 15 mins
Quantity: 1.5 to 2 cups
Equipment: (hand) blender

Ingredients
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • 2 cloves of garlic (optional, some people can’t sleep after eating garlic)
  • 3 tbsp tahini
  • half a cup of lemon juice (I used one huge lemon)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • salt (I used about half a tsp, but go by taste and what you like)
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin cold pressed olive oil

 

Instructions
  1. Rinse the chickpeas thoroughly.
  2. Place all the ingredients in the blender.
  3. Blend till it’s a smooth paste, add a little more olive oil if you prefer a thinner consistency. Or you can just add water to the mixture until you reach the consistency you want.

 

Do you know people who would love to make this easy hummus recipe? Please share this blog with them!

 

And as we mentioned above, we have an amazing free online workshop ‘Reset Your Health’. Gut health is a big topic in the health industry right now, and rightly so. Because you are not what you eat, you are what you digest (well, there are many other components of course, but your digestion is such an important one). Our workshop is the best start you can get! And if you need more, you can totally reset your gut with our program ‘Reset Your Health’, now available in the webshop. Within 3 weeks, you gut is in the best state it can be in!