It may not feel like January while the sun is shining, but when dinnertime rolls around it’s still soup weather.  You can add tofu or other protein sources to this recipe to make it even heartier.

Clean and finely mince 1 Leek.  Cut 1 carrot into small dice.  Saute in a large pot in 2 T. olive oil until tender.

Slice 6 fresh shitake mushrooms (or dried Shitakes soaked in hot water) and mince 1 T. fresh ginger.  Add to the pot and saute another 3-5 minutes.  Sprinkle with salt.

Add 1 quart of vegetable, mushroom or other broth.  Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes.  Add 2 t. sesame oil and 2 T. soy sauce.

While the soup is cooking, remove the stems from 1 bunch of red russian kale and chop roughly.  Add to the soup.  Separate 2-3 baby bok choy and wash each stem.  Chop the larger ones roughly and leave the smaller ones whole.

Cook 12 oz. of udon or soba noodles according to the directions.  When the kale is tender, add the noodles and the bok choy to the soup and simmer for a few minutes.  Season with additional soy sauce.