Thursday, February 3, 2011

Miso Soup

The People's Food Co-op got new bulk miso! For the past two years that I have been buying miso from them, they have had white miso in bulk. White miso is much milder than other misos and is sometimes called sweet miso. This is really good for making dressings but I definitely prefer a darker full-flavored miso.

This past Saturday my world got flipped upside down. Red Adzuki Bean Miso:

Basic Kombu Dashi
Dashi is a basic Japanese soup stock that can be made with kombu, bonito flakes, sardines, and/or dried shiitaki mushrooms. Here's a recipe for the kombu one. Kombu is a type of sea vegetable (can be bought in bulk at the People's Food Co-op).

Soak kombu in cold water for 30 minutes in a pot.
Bring water to an ALMOST boil.
Remove kombu from water right before it boils.

Miso Soup (with Daikon, Carrot, Mushrooms, and Wakame)
There are a bajillion ways to make miso soup. You can put just about anything in it as long as you end with adding miso in. Here's my miso today!

dashi (recipe above)
3 daikons (1)
greens from 1 daikon (1)
1 carrot (2)
a handful of dried mushrooms (3)
a handful of wakame (4)
4 T red or brown miso (amount depends on how much dashi you start with) (4)

Soak dried mushrooms and wakame separately in water to rehydrate.
Heat dashi to a simmer.
Cut daikons in half length-wise, thinly slice into half moons and drop into simmering dashi.
Thinly slice carrot and drop into simmering soup.
Once daikon and carrots are cooked (soft to the touch) add in wakame and mushrooms.
Remove daikon greens from their stem and drop into simmering soup.
Allow to cook for a couple more minutes and then remove from heat.
Dilute miso with an equal amount of water.
Add miso to soup once it cools a bit.*

*Letting the soup cool before adding the miso is an important step. Miso is a fermented bean paste so if you add it to simmering water, you will kill all of the happy bacteria that is so good for you!

(1) From Whole Foods Market, labelled as "Local" because they bought it from a farm in MI
(2) Left over from making snowmen yesterday :)
(3) I dried these myself from the fall. I believe I bought them from Tantre Farm originally...
(4) Bulk section of the People's Food Co-op

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