Miso takes a l o n g time to ferment. The stuff in my cupboard is nearly 8 months old… and it is finally technically done! I decided to celebrate with some miso-based recipes! However, if you’re not that patient there are some brands of fresh and living miso available commercially (so I haven’t had to go without while I was waiting for my miso to finish up).
Meanwhile, here’s a recipe for a traditional Japanese-style miso soup that is good along side of sushi or as a warming after-school snack. It is so quick and easy to make that I even make it when we buy takeout sushi!
- 4 cups water
- ½ cup bonito flakes
- 1 large piece of dashi kombu
- ½ cup of tofu cut into cubes
- 1 tsp dried wakame
- 3 tbsp miso paste
- ¼ cup chopped spring onions
- Bring the water and kombu to a simmer, stir in the bonito flakes and remove from heat and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
- Strain the water then return to the heat with the tofu and dried wakame and warm until it's just starting to simmer (you don't want to boil your soup).
- Remove from heat.
- Mix the miso paste into a cup of liquid until it's well dissolved. Stir back into the cooling soup (you don't want to over heat the miso paste and kill all the probiotics).
- Garnish with spring onions and serve!
-Here’s a quick rundown on the unusual ingredients. Bonito = dried fermented fish… clearly another ferment for me to try. Dashi Kombu = a big piece of dried kelp. Wakame = seaweed flakes, often used in seaweed salad.
-I realize that specialty Japanese ingredients aren’t sitting around in everyone’s pantry. You don’t have to use them all… or if you don’t have anything on hand besides miso, then just use broth as your starting liquid and skip the bunito, kombu and wakame. You could also throw in a bit of kelp or dulse, if you have it, to give it that seaweed flavour. It may not be traditional… but it will be quick, probiotic and delicious!