The origin of miso
It is said that origin of miso dates back to ancient China and also it is said that miso was originally unique to Japan. So, actually its origins have not been cleared and there are two theories about origin, China and Japan.
In Japanese theory, it is said that the prototype of Japanese miso dates back to the Yayoi period, (an Iron Age era in the history of Japan traditionally dated 300 BCE to 300 CE).
Do you know what Miso is?
Since the Japanese food was registered to the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of 2013, miso soup has been getting popular in the world. Miso soup is usually served with rice in Japan and that is Japanese culture. And recently miso has become popular as “MISOSOUP” even outside of Japan too.
Miso soup is a Japanese traditional soup which is consisting of a stock called "DASHI" into which softened miso paste is mixed. Typically tofu and wakame (one kind of seaweeds) are put in miso soup as solid ingredients, but many other kinds of food can be good solid ingredients in miso soup, such as seasonal vegetables and mushrooms, meat, fish and shellfish, root vegetables and leaf objects. Also there are countless combinations of such foods that can be matched in miso soup.
Today I'd like to talk about miso which is essential for miso soup.
Miso paste, soy sauce, mirin, vinegar, and sake are fundamental ingredients in any Japanese pantry, lending rich flavours to most of the dishes that Japan is so well known for; sushi, teriyaki, miso soup, and more. Amazingly, the production of these important ingredients relies on one vital, microscopic organism; koji-kin, otherwise known as Aspergillus Oryzae.
One of the main ingredients of OKAZU is miso paste, so we were really fortunate to meet Yumi Miyamoto, a miso sommelier from Japan. Yumi shared her knowledge about miso, and Japanese fermentation processes in general, and we are glad to pass along these interesting tidbits with you. Over the next few weeks we will be releasing a series of articles to jump start your miso education. Read on for the first article in the series, Fermentation Basics.