You've heard the phrase, 'an apple a day keeps the doctor away.' But in Japan, you may hear another claim: 'miso soup every day keeps the doctor away.'
Miso is a staple in Japanese cuisine, and has a long list of health benefits. The magic is in the bean paste, which is fermented for up to three years.
If you're a frequent visitor to the Lansdowne Park farmers market, you might already know Etsuko Inoue. The owner of Kamosu-Miso sells her miso pastes there, and at Herb & Spice on Bank Street.
Those pastes, she said, take three years to ferment. Here's a soup recipe she she shared on CBC Ottawa's All In A Day:
- 4 cups water.
- 2 inches kombu (dried kelp).
- Your choice of vegetables including a carrot, half an onion, a potato or 3 inches of white daikon radish, all uniformly sliced in quarter-inch pieces.
- 4 shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced.
- 3 leaves napa cabbage, thinly sliced.
- ½ cup silken tofu, cubed.
- 4 tbsp. miso paste
Pour water into a sauce pan and add kombu (optional). Add the root vegetables and mushrooms first; cook on medium until fork-soft. Add cabbage and tofu and cook for three minutes. Turn off heat. Put half cup of the liquid from the saucepan into a bowl and stir in the miso until dissolved. Then put it back into the saucepan. Serves four.