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"Tsumire-Jiru" Fish Ball Soup

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Ingredients (Serves 4)
*300g/ 11oz horse mackerel
*4cm "daikon" Japanese radish
*1/2 "gobo" burdock root
*1/2 carrot
*100g/ 4oz shimeji mushroom
*1 tbsp flour
*1 tbsp sake

Ingredients for soup
*6 cups/ 1200ml dashi stock
*3-4 tbsp miso paste
*1 tbsp sake
*1 tbsp mirin
*1 tsp grated ginger
*Finely chopped leek -- to taste

How to fillet horse mackerel
*See more details on "How to fillet mackerel"
1 Put the parchment on the cutting board so that the cutting board won't absorb the fish smell. Cut off the head. Slice the stomach open with the tip of the knife. Open the stomach with your fingertips. Remove the innards and wash.

2 Wipe the fish dry with paper towel. Wrap the leftovers from the fish in the parchment and throw them away.

3 Slice the horse mackerel from the tail. Turn over and slice the other side.

4 Shave off the bone. (Remove the obvious bones.)

How to cook Fish Ball Soup
1 Peel the skin of the horse mackerel. Chop the fillet with small bones. Put the horse mackerel in a bowl. Add the salt, sake, flour and mix them well.

2 Peel the daikon and cut it into tanzaku pieces (thin oblong card shapes). Peel the carrot and cut into tanzaku pieces. Remove the stem of shimeji mushrooms. Loosen them and cut the longer pieces in half. Peel the burdock. Sharpen the burdock into thin strips. Soak in water and then drain well.

3 Heat the dashi stock in the sauce pan. When it comes to a boil, add the daikon, burdock and carrot. When they become soft enough, make the bite-size mackerel balls and add to the soup.

4 When the mackerel balls are cooked, add the shimeji mushroom. Cook for a while and add sake, mirin, and miso paste and stir. Skim the surface.

5 Sprinkle the leek, shichimi (seven-spice chili pepper) and grated ginger on top to your taste.

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