Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Daikon Miso



I made this simple miso from the enormous daikon we got with the first installment of our Belmont Farm winter CSA. After two weeks in the fridge it was getting a little floppy, so I diced it and soaked it in water, at which point it hardened like the heart of a racist on November 5th.

One of the (few) criticisms I have with Bittman is that a truly minimalist recipe can't have oodles of ingredients. This miso, which was exotic, nourishing, and flavorful, had two.

Many miso recipes cram the soup with ingredients that unnecessarily complicate this elegant and simple dish. While you can make a meal out of it with noodles, egg, fishcakes or tofu, in the case of miso I think less is more.

For this version I simmered daikon hunks in water until they were whatever the Japanese word for al dente is. (Anyone?) Then I turned off the gas, made a miso slurry with a little of the water, reintroduced it, and slurped away.

The broth created by cooking the daikon created a particularly sweet and mineral base. Too much paste and you loose it, but that tastes good, too. If nothing else this dish is a celebration of texture.

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Recipe: Daikon Miso

Note: This could easily be ________ (edible noun) miso, too.

daikon radish (about 3/4 cup per bowl)
miso paste (to taste, about 1 tbsp)

Simmer the cubed daikon until mostly tender. Turn off the heat, create a smooth slurry with some of the daikon water and the miso paste. Add slurry to the pot, stir, and enjoy.

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Etymology for Karen:

daikon: from dai "large" + "kon" root (Japanese)

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5 comments:

Christy said...

Ah! Finally a question I can answer! Al dente in Japanese - 'katame' or 'katame ni yuderu'


If you have any left over daikon and need another recipe, maybe try kohaku namasu - its a salad with sweet-sour vinegar dressing made with daikon and carrots (the first part of the name means red and white because of the vegetables colors.)

Enjoy your blog, found it through your comments on the Bitten website!

Kristin said...

That salad sounds intriguing. I found a recipe for it at here:http://www3.ocn.ne.jp/~romisdg/recipes/10.html

I have both lots of carrots and lots of daikon from Belmont CSA. I'll give both recipes a try.

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