This kongguksu (cold soybean soup) is a great light way to beat the summer heat!
I’ve been craving this cold soybean soup ever since I had it for the first time in 2011, but never found a place that served it at the right time. I actually always seemed to end up craving this great summer soup in the winter! I first had it in Korea, when I was visiting a folk village with my roommate’s family. I don’t like spicy things and was pickier back then, so I was generally apprehensive of soups. I was relieved when this soup was plopped down in front of me on this super hot day in July. Something that isn’t red is generally a good sign, and I soon scarfed these down when they were deemed safe.
It turns out, this soup is basically a soy milk broth (with a couple of additions to make it more savory) and a salty, springy Korean noodle. It’s got a great mouthfeel, and you can’t really beat fresh soy milk. It involves a little prep work to make the milk, but once you do, you can eat it all week long! Once the soybeans have been cooked, you can also put them in the freezer whole for easy access next time.
If you don’t like the texture, you can strain the milk, but I think it gives it a nice difference from something you would drink. Blender note: I just used a regular blender and did it in two batches. If you have a Vitamix or similar, the texture and space may not even be a concern for you. Also, the milk will get thicker after it sits for awhile. So you can just add some more water to make your soup more “brothy” again.
Local Spotlight: I saved this recipe for the summer because it’s perfect for tomato and cucumber season! I bought the cucumber and dill from the farmers market, but I forgot to photo the dill (typical).
Do you like cold soup?
Kongguksu (Cold Soybean Soup) [DF, Vegan]
- 1 1/2 cup of dried soybeans soaked in cold water overnight
- 2 T. mixed nuts without peanuts or pine nuts
- 2 t. of toasted sesame seeds
- 200 g of somyeon thin noodles
- 1 1/2 t. salt
- water and ice cubes
- Cucumber strips dill sprig and tomato for garnish
- Soak soybeans overnight in filtered water. (About 5 or 6 C. of water)
- Drain and add soybeans to a medium saucepan. Fill this saucepan with about 3 C. of filtered water and bring to a boil. Cook for 15 minutes.
- Drain soybeans in a colander.
- Remove skins from soybeans by rubbing beans against each other in your hands. To do this, I placed them back in the bowl I soaked them in and filled it with water (just tap). You can start to skim off the skins then.
- Add one heaping cup of prepared soybeans, 1 T. of nuts and 1 t. sesame seeds to a blender with 2.5 cups of filtered water. Blend on Liquefy setting for 2 minutes, until well combined and milk begins to look thick.
- Pour into a large bowl and repeat steps with second half. Unless it will all fit in your very large blender to do it all at once!
- Combine and season with salt to taste.
- Chill for as long as possible. Can be made ahead of time.
- Boil noodles according to package. (About 3-5 minutes)
- Drain and rinse with cold water.
- Portion noodles into each bowl and pour soybean broth over the noodles.
- Serve with ice cubes, cucumber slices and tomatoes.
Naturally Dairy Free and Vegan