Monday, August 03, 2009

Miso Soup-- FINALLY!

Posting has been light (or non-existent) this weekend since my computer is in the shop. I have tons of book reviews to post, but haven't had the computer! Borrowing Terri's today to share my miso soup recipe, which I FINALLY figured out this weeked after like 10 years of trying. It is surprisingly difficult to find a decent recipe online. So. If you like miso soup, here's how you can make your own. I was sooooooooooo happy to finally figure this out.

Homemade Quick and Yummy Miso Soup

You'll need:
  • Miso: If you go to a store with a wide selection of miso, it is VERY confusing. Berkeley Bowl had, seriously, like 25 kinds. I stood in front of the miso case for a loooong time. I chose shiro miso (white) and it turned out very well. Many recipes say that you can use red miso in the colder months. I think it probably doesn't matter, just pick one. Shiro seems like it's a good place to start.
  • Instant dashi: this is the secret ingredient!! I don't know why more recipes for quick miso don't include this -- it makes all the difference. It is not vegan/vegetarian, but you only use a small amount. You can get this at any Asian market. The brand "Hon-Dashi" seems to be most popular
  • Wakame: Dried 'sea vegetable'. Also very important to miso soup, but if you can't find it, you can still make yummy soup. This should also be at the Asian market (or Whole Foods).
  • Other add-ins: dried shiitake, green onion, yellow onion, soft tofu, whatever you like in your miso.

Here is how to make a single serving (which is super-yummy for a savory breakfast):

Boil one cup of water.

Add in 1/4 teaspoon dashi (more if you like a stronger flavor)

Add 1/4 teaspoon dried wakame (you might need to snip it into tiny pieces first -- it expands like crazy!!)

Add shiitakes and yellow onions, if using.

Let boil another few seconds (maybe a minute). Then TURN OFF THE STOVE.

Once the boiling has stopped, stir in 1 tbsp. miso. You can also pre-mix this with a little water to make a smooth paste. It's important not to boil the miso once it's been added.

Whisk until everything is combined. Taste. Add more miso or dashi until it tastes right to you (I had to add a tiny pinch more dashi and a little more miso because I like a strong flavor).

Garnish with green onion, tofu, etc.


I'm going to experiment using this as a base for udon soup, with I also adore.

I was SO PLEASED to finally figure out how to make miso at home. I don't know why there aren't more simple recipes like this -- most seem to leave out the dashi, which is essential to make it taste right!

Good luck, happy cooking, and book reviews coming soon!


Tammie said...

i hate having computer issues. my computer is my lifeline.

mama needs her some miso soup.

Tammie said...

also....cant wait to read your book reviews. i love them so. :)

Stefanie said...

Love miso soup. I've even actually made it it's so quick and easy. Hope your computer returns home soon!

Daphne said...

Tammie: yay for miso soup, and yay for my computer back! Book reviews galore coming up!

Stefanie: it's so yummy, especially when you are a bit under the weather. SO GLAD to have found a recipe that works!