Dengaku Miso Dressing (味噌田楽)

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Dengaku miso (also known as sweetened miso) is a popular dressing used in Japan for vegetable and tofu, made with a stronger flavoured red miso.

  • 1 Tablespoon red miso
  • 1 Tablespoon sake
  • 1 Tablespoon raw sugar

To prepare the dengaku miso dressing, mix all the ingredients well and set aside.

 

Okra in Ginger Broth

  • 61/3 ounces small okra *
  • 1/3 ounce grated ginger
  • 8 fluid ounces Shiitake Mushroom Dashi
  • 2 Tablespoons  Japanese soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon  sake
  • 1 Tablespoon  mirin
  • 1 teaspoon  sesame oil
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt

Wash and trim stem ends of okra.

Add Shiitake Mushroom Dashi, soy sauce, sake, mirin, sesame
oil and sea salt in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Lower
heat and add okra and grated ginger. Simmer for
about 10 minutes.

Remove and arrange on 4 individual serving plates.
Serve with some broth spooned over.

* Cut into halves if you are using okra of longer lengths.

 

 

Shichimi Tōgarashi – 七味唐辛子 (seven-flavor chili pepper)

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2 tablespoons sanshō or finely ground Szechuan pepper
2 tablespoons dried yuzu peel or orange or lemon peel
4 tablespoons chili powder (the Korean variety if possible)
2 tablespoons aonoriko (nori seaweed flakes)
2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
2 tsp teaspoons hemp seeds
2 teaspoons garlic powder

Mix everything together and store in an airtight container.  These amounts are just a guideline and adjust seasonings to your taste.

 

Chicken Dashi

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Meat dashi’s are pretty rare in Japanese Cuisine.  Here in the United States chef David Chang has made his bacon dashi infamous in culinary circles.

This Dashi can be made more luxurious by replacing the chicken bones with duck bones.

3 pounds 5 ounces chicken bones
1 tablespoon fine sea salt
2 scallions, white part only
3 1/2 ounces carrots
1 3/4 ounces of ginger
1 cup sake

14 3/4 cups cold water

Remove any bits of fat from the chicken bones. Rub the salt into the bones and set aside for 1 hour to allow salt to penetrate.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the bones in a roasting pan and roast in the oven for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut the scallion stalks in half and carefully char them over a gas flame on the stove or under the broiler. Wash and roughly slice the unpeeled carrots and ginger.

Transfer the hot roasted bones to a large stockpot and add the rest of the ingredients. Quickly bring to a boil, then simmer until the stock is reduced by half, skim off any scum that rises to the surface.

Remove the bones from the pot, and pass the stock through a fine sieve.

The dashi will keep in the fridge for a few days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Vegetarian Dashi

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8 cups cold water
14 ounces of vegetable offcuts and peelings from 4 different kinds of vegetables such as carrots, daikon, Chinese cabbage, pumpkin, turnip, etc.
2 slices of root ginger
3/4 ounces of konbu

Place all the ingredients in a pan. Bring to the boil over a medium heat, then simmer until reduced by half.

Strain through a fine sieve and use as needed.

The dashi will keep in the fridge for a few days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Shiitake Mushroom Dashi

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5 cups Vegetarian Konbu Dashi Stock
11/4 ounces dried shiitake mushrooms
1 teaspoon caster sugar
pinch of sea salt

Add Vegetarian Konbu Dashi Stock to a pan until hot but not boiling, then remove from the heat.

Add the shiitake mushrooms, sugar and salt to the hot konbu dashi and let them soak for 2–4 hours. Remove the mushrooms, reserving them for another recipe.

Strain the dashi into a bowl avoiding any sediment or grit from the bottom of the pan.

The dashi will keep in the fridge for a few days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Vegetarian Konbu Dashi Stock

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11/4 ounces konbu
5 cups cold water
pinch of sea salt

Gently wipe the konbu with a damp cloth. Add the konbu and water to a pan, cover with a lid and let it stand for 8 hours or preferably overnight. The longer the soaking time, the more flavoursome your stock will be. At the end of the soaking time, remove the konbu from the water, add a pinch of salt and mix well. The konbu dashi is ready to be used.

The dashi will keep in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Niboshi Dashi

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This Dashi is a much stronger flavored version than the bonito and konbu dashi.  Excellent for Miso Soup and Ramen.

Pluck off and discard the fish heads, open up the fish stomachs and remove and discard the insides. Place the prepared fish in a pan with the measured water and konbu, or with the Traditional Fish Based Dashi, and leave to soak for one hour.

Bring the water quickly to a boil, skim off any scum that rises to the surface and simmer very gently for 6–10 minutes.

Remove from the heat and pass through a very fine muslin-lined sieve.

The dashi will keep in the fridge for a few days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Traditional Fish Based Dashi

11/4 ounces konbu
5 cups cold water
2 cups dried bonito fish flakes

Gently wipe the konbu with a damp cloth. Fill a pan with the  water, add the konbu and leave it to stand, covered, for 6–8 hours. Remove the lid and, on a low heat, bring the water to a near boil.

Remove the konbu just before the water boils as it will give off a strong smell and bitter flavour if boiled at this point.

Bring the stock to a full boil then immediately add the dried bonito flakes, remove the pan from the heat. Do not stir and allow the flakes to settle to the bottom of the pan for a few minutes, skim any foam from the surface. Pass the dashi through a muslin-lined sieve without pressing it.

The dashi will keep in the fridge for a few days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Yosedofu (Easy Japanese Soft Tofu)

2 teaspoons liquid nigari *
3 cups Tezukuri Tonyu (Homemade Soy Milk)

Thin the nigari with 1 teaspoon water. Heat the soy milk in a double boiler over high heat until the soy milk reaches 167 degrees. Remove the pot holding the soy milk, insert a flat wooden spoon in the milk, and immediately pour the nigari against the spoon. Slowly stir the soy milk, making 3 wide revolutions and only 3 revolutions, and pull the wooden spoon straight up out of the coagulating soy milk. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 10 minutes.

Scoop the tofu into small bowls and serve drizzled with a little soy sauce or sprinkled with sea salt. If you are looking for a bit more enhanced flavor and presentation, garnish soy sauce–flavored tofu with finely chopped chives and a dab of grated ginger or salt-flavored with a smidge of freshly grated wasabi.

* Nigari —> Concentrated solution of salts (esp. magnesium chloride) left over after the crystallization of seawater or brine.  Can be bought at any Asian Grocer or online,