Recipe: Homemade Miso Soup

Miso soup can be enjoyed on its own or as a side.  These days they sell instant miso soup packets if you’re in a rush and you can just add hot water.  Today I’m going to show you how to make miso soup by creating your own dashi stock from scratch.  Dashi is the fundamental stock or soup to many Japanese dishes.  This miso soup is easy and is basically a 2 step process but will change the flavor of your homemade miso soup tremendously.  I hope you’ll give it a try!

Prep Time: 1 hour |  Cook Time: 20 min | Difficulty: Easy | Serves: 4

(All ingredients available at GL Japan Plaza)

4 cups water
10 g dried kombu (japanese kelp),
10 g katsuobushi (bonito flakes),
1/2 tsp. hondashi (instant dashi granules),
3 T miso paste,
300 g soft tofu, cubed
seaweed knots, trimmed to bite size (optional ingredient),
chopped scallions

Note:  Typically I’d use 20g of katsuobushi and no hondashi, but since this time I only had half the amount of katsuobushi on hand, I thought the addition of hondashi would give it a little more somethin’ somethin’.  Substitute as you like.

Step 1:  Make the dashi stock.  Fill a pot with 4 cups of water and then soak your dried kombu in the water for 30 minutes to soften.  After softened, cut a few slits around the kombu and turn on heat to medium.  Watch closely and just before the water boils, remove the kombu.  Stir in the bonito flakes into the water and allow to boil.  Once boiled, turn off heat and let stand until room temperature.  Strain the liquid to remove the bonito flakes.  Return liquid to the pot.

Step 2:  Bring dashi stock to a simmer.  Add the tofu, seaweed knots and hondashi granules.  Spoon your miso paste into a bowl and add some warm broth to the bowl to dissolve the miso paste. Pour miso paste into the pot.  (Do not allow miso paste to boil)  Stir and sprinkle with green onion.  Ready to serve.

Miso soup is enjoyed by sipping from the bowl and using chopsticks for the pieces in the soup.

Homemade miso soup really brings it to the next level….mmmMmMmm umami!  This is a delicious, smoky, deep flavored miso soup.  You can add your own ingredients to make it a heartier soup.  It would be great with the addition of vegetables such as daikon radish, mushrooms, baby napa cabbage or pieces of salmon or clams.  To make it a meal, serve with a little side salad.

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