On the menu: Edamame Soup with Mushrooms and Spinach
When I was an undergrad, I never worried about what I was going to do after college because I always knew that I was going to go right to graduate school. I have spent this entire academic year with a constant undercurrent of panic, trying to figure out what I was going to do with my life once I had my degree. Today, I am delighted to share with you that I have an answer to that question. It’s not the answer I was expecting, and given my personal struggles with my Master’s program these last three years, what I’m about to say is kind of shocking.
I have accepted a four year assistantship to study for my PhD.
Two weeks ago, I was continuing on a frantic, eight month long search for employment in my desired field. I was getting nowhere, and I was constantly frustrated. Then one day, almost as an afterthought, my advisor alerted me to an opportunity for further study with a professor who I have gotten to know pretty well through my time here. I immediately sought out a meeting with said professor to discuss the opportunity, and it was everything I could have asked for. Although I was determined to take time off of school to build a career and possibly go back to school once Kevin finished his doctorate degree, it quickly became obvious that time off of school could not happen. So I submitted a formal application. And I was offered the job. I will be studying landscape ecology; more specifically, I’ll be examining the landscape level conditions of wild blueberry patches and their effects on native pollinators (honeybees) in Maine.
Who would have imagined that my Master’s degree and all the tears that went along with it would lead to this? I never thought I would be this exhilarated to continue on in school. Getting my Master’s degree has taught me so much, and it goes way beyond what’s written in my thesis. Now I have a much better handle on how to deal with graduate education than the naïve undergrad I was three years ago. I know that this is the right decision for me. And I cannot wait to see where this research will take me.
Our eating habits have also taken a new direction as of late. Kevin expressed an interest in going meatless for a while, and I was all for it. How long a while will last has yet to be determined, but we’ve been enjoying it so far. This soup is a great contribution to any vegetarian repertoire.
Edamame Soup with Mushrooms and Spinach
from Food Network
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 scallions, white and green parts separated, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound frozen shelled edamame (about 3 cups)
1 russet potato, peeled and diced (about 9 ounces)
4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 cups baby spinach
1 to 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
Freshly ground pepper
Sriracha or other hot sauce, for serving
Heat a medium pot over medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon oil, the scallion whites, and garlic. Cook for 1 minute, until softened. Add 7 cups of water, the edamame, and potato; season with salt and cover. Once the soup boils, remove the lid and cook until the edamame and potato are tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool slightly and then carefully blend with an immersion until you reach your desired consistency. We kept it slightly chunky; the original recipe advises you to blend until it’s smooth. (You can also blend the soup in batches in a traditional blender.) Keep warm.
Meanwhile, heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat, add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, then add the mushrooms and scallion greens. Cook until the mushrooms brown, about 3 minutes, and then add the spinach, stirring until it wilts. Remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper.
When ready to serve, gently reheat the soup and add rice wine vinegar. Ladle soup into 4 bowls and spoon some of the mushrooms and spinach into each bowl. Drizzle in the hot sauce as desired. Serve.