Miso soup (Misoshiru): Japanese comfort soup
|February 8, 2010||Posted by ameliaps under Japanese, miso, soup, soups, winter|
The Japanese know how to eat healthy and savory at the same time. I try to cook Japanese once a week.
For many prepartions, I especially love using miso paste. I spread it on salmon together with ginger and soy sauce for a delicious broiled treat. And I use it for Miso soup (Misoshiru). It’s a wonderfully comforting soup…even my young children love it. It has a “umame” flavor (savory) and is full of amino-acids and omega-3 fats, so it’s a healthy choice too. Just add some rice or some udon noodles and a piece of smoked mackerel or broiled fish (see my comment above above salmon) and you have dinner!
Miso is a thick Japanese paste made by fermenting rice, barley or soy beans. white miso (Shiromiso) and red miso (Akamiso) are the most common types. I like the rich flavor of the red.
Miso soup starts with a stock called dashi which is then mixed with miso paste. Many other ingredients can be added to personalize it. I like the traditional ones: small cubes of tofu, green onions, and dried wakame seaweed.
Dashi stock can be made with dried sardines, kombu (dried kelp), dried and smoked bonito (skipjack tuna), or dried shiitake. I make mine with bonito and kelp.
I was not feeling 100% yesterday and it was cold, so this warm soup was just what I needed at almost 30 degrees Farenheit!
6 cups of water
4 sheets of dried kelp (konbu), broken-up in strips
1 cup bonito flakes OR 2 tsp granulated bonito (instant dashi powder)
2 Tbsp Miso paste
About a cup of dried wakame seaweeds
4 oz. silken Tofu, pressed to release some water, cut up in small 1/2″ cubes
2 green onions, thinly slices, diagonally
(soy sauce, optional, to top)
Make the dash stock. Drop the strips of dried kelp in cold water, turn the heat on medium and bring to a VERY gentle simmer: do NOT let it come to a boil. Turn off. Add the bonito flakes (or the dashi base, if using). Strain through a colander lined with cheesecloth (discard the stuff in the strainer).
Mix in the miso. In a small bowl temper (gently stir together until combined) the miso paste with a few tablespoons of the strained dashi stock.
Mix back in with the rest of the stock. Keep it warm on the stove.
Add the extra ingredients. In each bowl, add some of the diced tofu, some green onions, and some dried wakame strings.
Pour the hot soup over it and enjoy!
Some people like it a little saltier so I bring some soy sauce to teh table for them to add.