After cooking Indian food for two days, I was inspired to stay within the region and make some Japanese dishes. After having watched Salt Fat Acid Heat based on the book by chef and authot, Samin Nosrat, I was ready to further indulge my love of Japan.
One of those dishes is Miso soup, which may seem like a longer process, but is really super simple. Kombu is a seaweed that helps to make a great base stock for Miso. After removing from the stock, check out recipes online of how to use the kombhu. Plus, do not wash the kombu. Those white dots are umami (category of taste).
When looking for miso in the store, look for a longer-aged miso which will bring so much more flavor to your soup.
And yes, when serving, please feel free to proudly say, "ME-SO hungry!"
4 cups water
1 strip kombu
4 oz dried or fresh shiitake mushrooms
1/4 bunch scallions, sliced into diagonal strips approximately 1/2 inch long
half a block of firm tofu, cubed
1/2 head of napa cabbage or any greens you have on hand
2 1/2 tbsp miso
In a container, soak kombu in the water overnight.
The next day, bring to a simmer or low boil (we don't want a large roiling boil).
After 15 minutes, remove kombu, and add mushrooms.
Bring to a boil for 10-15 minutes and remove the mushrooms (or you might choose to keep them).
Bring back to a simmer.
Add cabbage and scallions and let cook for 10 minutes.
Take some broth out and mix with miso in a bowl. Pour back in and mix.
Add tofu and cook for an additional 8 minutes.
Note: If you have leftovers, make sure to bring to room temperature before refrigerating. When reheating, do not let miso come to a rolling boil otherwise it will break down the soup.