Back to Basics: Episode 2 - Must-haves: Shoyu and Miso

Let's review the basics of Japanese cooking with chef Rika and master chef Saito. In this second episode, we focus on 2 of the most popular seasonings used in Japanese cuisine: shoyu and miso.

(1) Agedashi Tofu

Ingredients (Serves 2 to 4)
1 block silken soft tofu
30 g ginger
2 green onions
Potato starch
Oil for deep-frying
Katsuobushi (skipjack shavings)

Dashi sauce:
300 ml dashi
4 tbsp mirin
50 ml soy sauce
1 1/2 tbsp potato starch
1 1/2 tbsp water

1. Coat the entire surface of the tofu with the starch. Deep-fry them until crisp. For the dashi sauce, mix the ingredients well in a pot on low heat. Pour the sauce on the fried tofu.

(2) Chinese Chives & Nori Salad

Ingredients (Serves 2)
1 bunch Chinese chives
1 1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 1/2 tsp soy sauce
1 sheet of nori
1/2 egg yolk

1. Add soy sauce, sesame oil and salt to the boiled Chinese chives and sprinkle with nori. You can add a pasteurized egg yolk if you like.

(3) Rika's Shoyu Ramen

Ingredients (Serves 4)
Shoyu soup:
400 g pork back ribs
1.2 l water
1 knob ginger, thinly sliced
1 sheet dried kombu kelp
2 tbsp sake
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp nam pla (Thai fish sauce)

Stewed Pork:
200 g stewed pork back ribs
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp sesame oil

Bean sprout salad:
200 g bean sprouts
1 tbsp sushi vinegar
2 tsp Chinese chili oil
2 tbsp ground sesame seeds
1/2 tsp salt

2 pasteurized eggs
Green onions
4 servings of ramen noodles

1. In a pot, cook the pork ribs in water to make the broth. Set the pork aside, add kombu kelp and ginger to the broth and season with sake, salt, soy sauce and fish sauce; heat. Season the stewed pork and bean sprout salad with each ingredient. Boil the noodles, and put it into a bowl. Pour the soup and top with the stewed pork and salad, eggs, green onions as you like.

(4) Saba Miso

Ingredients (Serves 2)
1 mackerel fillet
8 thin slices of fresh ginger
1 tbsp miso
1 tbsp gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste)
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp sake
2/3 cup water

1. Combine all the seasonings and water in a pan. Bring it to a boil. Place the mackerel fillet in the pan and add the ginger slices. Cover with a paper towel and cook over low heat for 20 minutes.

(5) Yaki Onigiri

Ingredients (Serves 2 to 3)
400 g cooked rice
2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
40 g miso
1 tbsp mirin
4 sheets of nori

1. Mix the cooked rice and the sesame seeds. Shape the rice to make rice balls. Combine the mirin and miso. Coat rice balls with the miso paste and grill them. Be careful not to burn them! Serve with nori.