Miso Soup with steamed rice on a brown tray with chopsticks and side dishes

Miso Soup

Miso Soup Homemade Style

From home-cooked meal to the restaurant, Miso soup is there as an accompaniment to a bowl of steamed rice. That is to say, the traditional soup has been consumed almost daily by the Japanese. Miso soup is a great example of simplicity in Japanese cuisine. Therefore, consisted of only 3 components.

The first and most important component is Dashi (Japanese stock). Dashi within itself has many varieties. As a result, we will be exploring deeper into Dashi recipe in the future post. However, in this recipe, we will make a basic Dashi called Awase Dashi. Which made from of dried kelp seaweed (kombu) and dried bonito flakes (katsuobushi).

The second ingredient is Miso (fermented soybean paste). The paste is made from the combination of koji (a kind of beneficial mold culture), soybeans, either steamed rice or barley and salt. Then left to ferment up to five years in cedar-wood barrels. Certainly, we will dive further into this topic soon.

The third part is garnished ingredients or toppings for Miso soup. This part introduces varieties into the soup itself. Most common garnish using in restaurants in the USA would be mushroom, tofu, scallion, and kombu. However, in Japan, there are many more ingredients as part of the toppings ranging from pork, clam, squash, potato, eggplant, and okra. Hence, there is almost no limitation. But there is an art in making this which we will explore more in the future.

Lastly, the easiest way to make Miso soup is using Dashi powder or Dashi packet (Kayanoya brand is one of the top quality). These help you whipping up a Miso soup when you are short on time. However, getting your hands on the highest quality Dashi on the market will elevate your soup to the next level. Hoping that you are looking forward to trying this recipe for yourself. Bon Appetit!!!

INGREDIENTS

For Awase Dashi Stock:

For Miso Soup:

  • 4 cups Awase Dashi
  • 6 tablespoons miso
  • 0.5 cup green onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup tofu, small diced

Directions

Prepare Homemade Awase Dashi Stock by:

  1. Soak the kombu in 8 cups of water overnight.
  2. Pour both kombu and water into a stockpot and gently bring to boil over medium-low heat. This low heat boiling is to ensure umami has been extracted from the kombu. Then remove the kombu just before the stock boiling. Failure to do so will result in a bitter flavor and leave a slimy mouthfeel to your dashi.
  3. In the meantime, add katsuobushi to simmer for 1 minute. Then immediately turn off the heat and let steep for 10 minutes.
  4. After that, strain the dashi and it is ready to be used or keep in a refrigerator up to a week.

Making Miso Soup by:

  1. Bring the dashi to a boil then add the tofu.
  2. Turn off the heat and slowly dissolve the miso into the soup.
  3. Garnish with green onion and serve immediately.


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