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.

 

Quick Aioli Cheat

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2 Cloves Garlic
2 Tablespoons Flat Leaf Parsley
2 Tablespoons Chives
2 Tablespoon Tarragon
Zest of one lemon
Juice of ½ lemon
1 Cup Mayonnaise
Salt and Pepper

Add all ingredients except mayonnaise to food processor and whirl together. Add mayonnaise and blend together so it is a consistent sauce with flecks of herbs throughout. Serve with chilled asparagus, salmon, etc.

Salsa Tinta (Basque Squid Ink Sauce)

 

Considered by many to be the Basque national sauce whether it’s used in risotto, a vinaigrette or squid in their own ink.

5 Spanish onions, halved and thinly sliced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and cut into small dice
1½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
2 cups water
½ cup canned whole plum tomatoes, crushed by hand
1½ tablespoons squid ink
Pinch of sugar

In a heavy saucepan, combine the onions, bell pepper, oil, and a little salt, cover, place over medium-low heat, and sweat the onions, stirring occasionally until the onions are soft and melty but not caramelized beyond a light blond. Raise the heat to medium, add the tomatoes, then bring to a boil and cook for about 5 minutes, until the tomato has lost some of its acidity.

Turn down the heat to a simmer and add the squid ink, cooking for a couple of minutes. Add the water and continue to cook for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions and pepper have almost entirely melted out and the sauce is sweet and complex.

Taste the sauce and adjust the salt. The sauce should have a very light hint of sweetness, so add sugar only if necessary. Blend in a blender until completely smooth. Use immediately or freeze for up to 3 months.

 

Sanbaisuis (Three Way Vinegar)

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Sanbaisuis is the basis for making a pickle called sanbaizuke, though it also becomes the dipping sauce for tempura.

⅔ cup Katsuobushi Dashi
⅔ cup good soy sauce
⅔ cup brown rice vinegar

Mix the dashi, soy sauce, and brown rice vinegar together and pour into a jar. Keeps for a couple of months, refrigerated. Good for making an instant pickle or on a vegetable salad with equal parts oil.

 

About Emulsified Sauces

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  • Made by combining two normally incompatible liquids through the incorporation of a binding or emulsifying agent.
  • Egg Yolks: Classically most common emulsifying agent.
  • Sabayon: Egg yolks and flavoring components whisked into a foamy mixture over a hot water bath until they are thick and airy.  Clarified butter is then added in a steady stream and whisked until smooth.
  • Clarified Butter: Butter that has been slowly melted, allowing most of the water to evaporate and the milk solids to separate and settle in the bottom of the pan.
  • Warm emulsified sauces will break or curdle if not prepared or held properly. Ideal temperature 120 degrees (49 degrees Celsius)
  • Possible reasons for failure:
    • The sabayon was I sufficiently cooked.
    • The sabayon was overcooked.
    • Clarified butter was incorporated too quickly.
    • Excessive heat made the butter separate from the yolks.
  • If sauce broke, ways to restabalize:
    • Beat a few drops of water into the sauce, working it in from the bottom inner edge of the bowl and using a small wire whisk gradually bring the whole sauce into the process.
    • If the sauce broke because it was too hot, add a few drops of cold water.
    • If the sauce broke because it was too cold, add a few drops of warm water.
    • If the sauce appears about to break, dip the bottom of the bowl into ice water bath and whisk constantly until the sauce smooths.
  • Warm Emulsified Sauces
    1. Clarify Butter.
    2. Cook sabayon over hot water bath, whisking constantly.
    3. Slowly add warm clarified butter, whisking constantly.
    4. If too thick, add drops of warm water, whisking constantly.
    5. Season with salt, cayenne and lemon juice.
    6. Hold at 120 degrees (49 degrees Celsius).