How to Cook: Miso Soup

Recipe from How to Cook Everything: The Basics. Photos by Romulo Yanes.

Recipe from How to Cook Everything: The Basics. Photos by Romulo Yanes.

Miso Soup

The best “instant” soup you’ll ever have.

TIME: About 15 minutes
MAKES: 4 servings

1/3 cup any miso
½ pound any tofu, cut into small cubes, optional
4 scallions, chopped

MAKING A SLURRY: When you mix miso (or any pasty or powdery ingredient) into hot or cold water, it becomes a slurry that will disperse evenly in liquids without clumping.

MAKING A SLURRY: When you mix miso (or any pasty or powdery ingredient) into hot or cold water, it becomes a slurry that will disperse evenly in liquids without clumping.

1. Put 6 cups water in a large pot over medium heat. When steam rises from the surface of the liquid and small bubbles appear along the edges of the pot, ladle ½ cup of the water into a small bowl with the miso and whisk until smooth.

ADDING THE MISO SLURRY: Just stir the mixture to combine and heat the miso and water—but don’t bring the soup to a boil.

ADDING THE MISO SLURRY: Just stir the mixture to combine and heat the miso and water—but don’t bring the soup to a boil.

2. Lower the heat under the pot to medium-low and add the miso slurry; stir once or twice, then add the tofu if you’re using it. Do not let the mixture boil; let it sit for a minute or two to heat the tofu through. Stir in the scallions and serve.

ADDING MORE INGREDIENTS: After the miso dissolves in the water, you can add tofu or quick-cooking vegetables to warm and soften in the soup. For some chew, use fi rm tofu; for a more custardy texture, use silken tofu. Or you can skip the tofu altogether.

ADDING MORE INGREDIENTS: After the miso dissolves in the water, you can add tofu or quick-cooking vegetables to warm and soften in the soup. For some chew, use fi rm tofu; for a more custardy texture, use silken tofu. Or you can skip the tofu altogether.

Tips

  • Miso is a paste made from soybeans (or other beans) and grain (usually rice or barley) fermented with salt. Look for naturally made, unpasteurized miso, found refrigerated in plastic tubs or in jars. Second choice is the shelf-stable miso sealed in plastic pouches; avoid the powdered stuff altogether. The names and types can be confusing, so just remember: The darker the miso, the deeper the flavor—and the packages are usually identified by color, ranging from white to yellow, red, and brown. Since you use them all the same way, try different kinds—perhaps starting with white or yellow—and see which you like best.
  • Once opened, store all miso in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed container, where it will keep for months. To avoid spoiling, always use a clean spoon when you scoop it out of the container.
  • Dissolve miso in water that’s just below a boil. Overheating it destroys a lot of the flavor and some nutritional benefit.
  • To make miso soup more substantial, right before serving stir in cooked or soaked Asian noodles, chopped leftover cooked meat or seafood, or a couple cooked scrambled eggs.

Photos by Romulo Yanes

Posted in Uncategorized

10 Comments

  1. Dan said...

    Will have to make this in the New Year … thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Chef Bob said...

    Wait!?! WHAT???
    No Dashi = Weak Umami = Not Miso Soup

    Get yourself some katsuobushi and kombu and go to town!

  3. omlet said...

    hmmm….an interesting recipe – i’ve got to try this one!

  4. grosir bros said...

    yummy… my family will love it… thanx

  5. Diana said...

    I was just wondering how to make miso soup! I think I will try it next time my husband makes sushi!

  6. David Burns said...

    Well Mark, I have to say, This soup is really my style. My stomach feels great after taking this.
    Thanks for sharing.

  7. Great step by step instructions with pictures. We will give this a try soon!

  8. Emily said...

    I just tried it and its more delicious than expected. Keep up the good work!

  9. You have served a healthy & fantastic recipe… Its really mouth-watering, delicious, & enjoyable… thanks for sharing & for your kind attention to detail!!!

  10. V. Sam said...

    Hello Mark, Miso soup is the best soup to cook whenever I lack time to cook. Soybeans and grains which are used to prepare miso are very healthy and also taste good. The detailed recipe has helped me a lot to prepare the soup in less time and with more ease. Thank you and I am looking forward to more recipes on your blog.

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