So it’s happening soon. The dreaded lockdown. Although it’s not called a lockdown here, it’s a circuit breaker. A (hopefully) limited shutdown or reset of the system. So schools and non-essential businesses will be closed till the end of April. Of course working in healthcare means that I don’t get to work from home, but on the other hand I don’t have to deal with cabin fever and staring at the 4 walls.
The first inkling I had of something brewing was in the morning. I had gone out on a supermarketing run and discovered that the supermarket, barely half an hour into opening, was full. And the queues to the cashier were snaking back impressively. Needless to say I picked up on the vibe and decided to throw in some additional groceries. In the end I was grateful I did so because the rest of the day, pictures were floating around WhatsApp of lines of people queuing up to get into supermarkets.
I was a little sad that I didn’t find cauliflower which is such a low carb staple. We make cauliflower rice several times a week and I swear cauliflower mash tastes better than potato mash any day. But anyway I made up by picking up some extra zucchini which is the other low carb hack because it makes great “noodles” or rather, zoodles. Actually zoodles are often used as a pasta substitute, but actually I think they are really amazing in Asian soups. The vegetable textures seem to segue beautifully with flavourful broths.
Fish soup is one of my favourite things. In fact, fish soup and yong tau fu are my 2 go to dishes when I’m out in hawker centers. Making a fish soup is not difficult as well and can be made on a stove top or in an instant pot. This particular recipe is kept as simple as possible with a very plain fish broth. This allows the freshness of the fish to really shine through. Anyway by the time we were done, the day had turned rainy and both kid#2 and I really savoured a lovely hot and comforting soup for a cool day.
Fish Zoodle Soup
A simple but comforting Asian zoodle soup
- 300-400g fish bones
- 1-2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
- 1 tbsp oil
- 4-5 L water
- 1.5 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp fine white pepper
- 2 zucchinis, spiralized
- 300g sliced garoupa fish
- 1 bunch of chinese spinach, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 bunch of enoki mushrooms
- 200g silken tofu, cut into cubes
- 1 tbsp fried shallots (optional)
- Turn on the Instant Pot saute mode. Heat up the oil in the pot, then saute the bones and ginger for 5-8 minutes till browned.
- Add water, salt and pepper, then turn off saute mode, close the pot and put the valve in the sealed position. Put on manual high pressure for 15 minutes. When done, do a quick pressure release. Drain the stock through a sieve and discard the bones and ginger.
- Return the fish broth into the pot and turn the saute mode back on. When the broth is simmering, sequentially blanch the zucchini, spinach, enoki mushrooms, tofu, and fish, each about 1/2 a minute till just cooked.
- Directly place these ingredients into bowls, and ladle the soup over. Sprinkle with fried shallos and serve hot.