Saturday, April 09, 2011

Miso paste

Excellent Ingredient of the Week
Miso paste is a very under-used ingredient, in my opinion. I use it in all kinds of things from stocks to rice to bread and it is now readily available in all the supermarkets here in tow,n so it is no longer a "special destination ingredient."

Miso is fermented soybean paste. A staple of Japanese cuisine, miso may also be made with rice or barley to which mold and salt are added before aging anywhere from 6 to 36 months. Miso paste varies in color from golden to reddish-brown to dark brown to black. It is high in salt, B vitamins and protein.

Think about using miso in place of chicken or veggie stock when cooking grains like Israeli couscous or barley. It makes a great vegetarian base for French onion soup instead of beef stock. Miso is great in salad dressing and pasta sauces. So buy some — it will last in your fridge almost forever — and start experimenting!

Here is a great all purpose marinade using miso.

Asian Miso Marinade

2 tablespoons Miso paste
1 1/2 teaspoons light sesame oil
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped garlic
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Stir to combine and store in the fridge. This can be used on almost everything.