Miso soup happens to be my dog Lola’s favorite food on earth. Not only does she love Bonito flakes but she has loved seaweed (wakame) for as long as I’ve had her
If you take out the scallions she’ll happily lap up Miso until she dies. I think I probably would too.
The first and most common way to use dashi is in Miso Soup.
I personally love this soup. It tastes delicious for breakfast with salmon & tea or for dinner with warm seasoned rice & sake. It’s pretty much a staple in Japanese households.
Miso paste is basically soy beans, rice, or barley fermented with salt, water and fungus. It sounds pretty gross but we all known fermented foods are actually really good for your tummy.
There are three different types of miso: white, yellow, and red. Red Miso has been fermented longer giving it a stronger and more salty flavor. It’s great in sauces and marinades. I’m going to be using it to make the sauce for Tofu Dengaku in the next few weeks.
White and yellow have a more mild taste so they work well in dressings and more subtle tasting dishes.
I use a mix of red and white Miso (Alton Brown says) but it’s honestly best to taste and mix of few different types and brands of Miso pastes to pick a combination that works for you.
Here’s what you’ll need for a classic Miso Soup you’d get at a restaurant alongside a steaming bowl of rice.
Classic Miso Soup
2.5 Tbsp Wakeme
4 cups Awase Dashi
14 oz firm silken tofu, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 Tbsp Red Miso
2 Tbsp White or Yellow Miso
2 scallions; thinly sliced
1. Remove moisture from tofu: wrap in paper towels or cheesecloth and press under a heavy object (a plate or pan) for 20 minutes.
2. Rehydrate Wakame: Combine wakame and 2 Tbsp water and let sit until softened, 25–30 minutes.
3. Bring dashi to a simmer. Add tofu, wakame, and scallions. Simmer gently.
4. Add Miso to Soup: Remove Dashi from heat. I use two ways to add Miso to the soup. I either put miso in a ladle and slowly add Dashi until a loose paste forms then add to soup, or I submerge a fine mesh sieve full of Miso paste into the soup.
Never boil your Miso! It has a very delicate and easily ruined flavor.
I hope you enjoy it as much as Lola (and I) do.
Come back next time when I make a Miso Soup with Cockles. How do you like your Miso Soup?