Miso Soup is something that most of us enjoy in Japanese restaurants, especially before a fresh sushi dinner. However, Miso Soup is easy to prepare at home with just a few ingredients, that are readily available either online or in Asian markets. Miso Soup starts with Dashi Broth created from Bonito Flakes and Kombu or seaweed, simmered in water. White Miso is then added to the broth to create an elegant soup. One tip — be careful not boil the soup, so the delicate flavors are preserved.
Miso Soup makes a perfect meal or snack and is delightful served with a green salad. A great reference in preparing Japanese food at home is — Mastering the Art of Japanese Home Cooking by Morimoto. Morimoto, former Iron Chef, writes a wonderful book highlighting recipes on easy Japanese cuisine. I think it is a fun cookbook to explore the beauty of making your own Japanese food right in your own kitchen, without feeling intimidated by the ingredients. So, start with this recipe for Miso Soup — you will definitely be surprised how clean and delicious homemade really tastes.
5 x 6 inch piece of Kombu
3 cups Bonito Flakes
1/3 cup White Miso, refrigerated section of grocery store
silken tofu, optional
1. In a stockpot, add 8 cups of filtered water. Place Kombu in water and cook on medium heat for 10-12 minutes — do not boil, just allow to simmer. Remove Kombu from the water with tongs and discard. Remove stockpot from heat.
2. Stir in the bonito flakes and let steep for 3 minutes. Pour liquid through a fine mesh strainer and press the flakes to release any juice. You now have Dashi Broth!
3. Pour the Dashi Broth back into the stockpot and place over simmering heat. In a small bowl, add the White Miso, ladle in 1/2 cup of dashi broth and stir until smooth.
4. Pour the White Miso into the Dashi broth and stir until combined. Dice silken tofu and add it to the Miso soup, if desired. Serve immediately or cool to room temperature and store in the refrigerator. Enjoy!