Talk to just about anyone in New York at this time of year, and they'll tell you that they're sick of everything. Three months of cold and snow will get a person down. In fact, this is probably about the only time of year when 9 out of 10 New Yorkers will tell you that they would happily move to L.A.
I am not immune to the great funk, I admit. As much as I rhapsodize about the seasons, the end of winter is not my favorite time of year. I drag myself around, living my life, going through the motions, but by the end of the day I have very little interest in much of anything but the TV and the couch. And when Paul is out of town, as he is now, that tendency is only amplified.
Sadly, this means that food becomes a bit of an afterthought. For all of the talk one hears of wonderful winter braises, I have no interest in initiating such an undertaking these days. But at the same time, takeout somehow only makes things more pathetic, so some sort of a compromise is called for, and that compromise is miso soup.
It requires so little effort I'm not even sure it could be called cooking, but I enjoy it immensely just the same. Just boil a couple of cups of water, add a tablespoon or two of miso paste (the amount varies wildly depending on the miso you use, taste as you go), perhaps some soy sauce if, like me, you ended up with some organic miso that has almost no salt (rookie mistake, obviously) and you have your base. Throw in whatever you've got in your refrigerator next. Chicken, tofu, mushrooms, I absolutely must have some sort of leafy green...and then, most importantly, the noodles. I find it critical to have those crinkly, guilty pleasure ramen type noodles, but this is a highly personal decision, so I leave it to your own good judgment to choose your carb.
And then, after no more than five minutes of effort, I once again sink into the couch, in front of the TV, with a steaming bowl of goodness, contently waiting out the cold.