Does this dish look dull to you? Let me tell you why i still find it exciting. One: it’s sat in a bowl that was given to me by two very dear friends that same night. Two: it’s a perfect starting point for one of the best dishes ever: soto.

Soto is a simple Indonesian stock which you combine in a plate with all kinds of condiments: leafy vegetables, curried vegetables, sambal (chili paste), egg, sprouts, fried onions and peanuts… It’s salad buffet meets soup bowl: super colorful and fragrant and tasty!

Fulfilling, beautiful & easy
So we had a great and fulfilling dinner. We sat on the floor (practicing for Thailand?) and put a spoonful of everything on our plates: noodles, broccoli, fried tofu, spicy cumin carrot julienne, potato, plus the above mentioned: egg, fried onions, etc… and then poured the stock over it.

The result is warm, spicy, crunchy and either very light or nice and filling; everyone can just take what their tummy feels like. Ideal for a family dinner or party.

I loved it so much, that i wondered why i don’t make this more often. It’s even also a great way to do something beautiful with leftovers (an ongoing quest in my household).

Recipe for steamed broccoli with noodles, as a basis for soto

For real soto, of course you make your own fresh stock. In a very quick version of soto that i love to make, i use one of those little packs of vegetable noodle soup. I know! Shameless.

Add the seasoning to (almost) twice the amount of water that it says on the label and bring it to a boil. Steam broccoli florets in the same pan, using a steam basket or a colander or sieve. The soup shall be light (although tasty) and the broccoli cooked but still firm and bright green. Remember to catch the soup while you drain the noodles.

Sprinkle the broccoli florets with sesame seeds, some (garlic) oil and any other seasoning that you love and serve with the noodles.

Very nice with an egg, fried onions and a teaspoon (or more..) of sambal.