Logo   (Since 1999)

Food Articles, News & Features Section

Home      Food Articles      Food Trivia      Today in Food History      Recipes      Cooking Tips      Videos      Food Quotes      Who's Who      Food Trivia Quizzes      Crosswords      Food Poems      Cookbooks      Food Posters      Recipe Contests      Culinary Schools      Gourmet Tours      Food Festivals & Shows

 You are here > Home > Food Articles



From Amateur & Basic Cooking Classes to Professional Chef Training
Over 1,000 schools & classes listed for U.S., Online & Worldwide

Culinary Posters and Food Art



See also: Miso Trivia - Soybean Trivia

Recipe below
Japanese have been making and using miso for over 1 thousand years; they believe firmly in its therapeutic and gastronomic values.

Sometimes called “wine of the Orient”, miso is a fermented liquid that takes as much care and patience to do as the finest beers and wines in the world. It is an art and science, which few can master.

     Miso is a slow fermented soybean paste that is indispensable to Japanese cuisine. The exotic savoury, salty, malty, rich flavour, characteristic of traditional Japanese dishes owe their gusto to miso.

     In Japan, people start their day with miso. The rich brown taste contains alkaloids which attract heavy metals and expels them from the body. Miso neutralizes the effects of smoking and other environmental pollutants. Scientists credit it with characteristics of lowering cholesterol, preventing heart disease, and aiding digestion when un-pasteurised.

     In Japan’s Nara era, miso was reserved for aristocrats and the court. In those days as is the case today, wealth bought health. During the 1500’s miso broke free from imperial circles and gained recognition as an ideal military ration and an important survival food. Aside from being high protein fare that’s easy to carry and prepare, miso contains salt, important for survival in hot climes.

     Miso production requires expertise and equipment. First, cooked soy beans are placed in a brewing vat, and occasionally blended with rice, barley, or wheat, to achieve different taste variations, then sea salt and kogi (a fermentation starter) are added to initiate fermentation. The miso is then left to age anywhere from several months to three – four years. The longer it matures, the more refined and expensive it becomes.

     Like wine, miso is classified by colour, flavour, aroma, and texture. Darker miso is more distinct in flavour and somewhat saltier than lighter varieties. White miso is noticeably sweeter while yellow miso is pleasantly “dry”.

     Traditionally produced imported miso is un-pasteurised and considered to be finer than those pasteurised. The best Japanese producer is Hatcho Miso Co. in business since 1300’s in Okazaki.

     Many brands of miso can be found in health food stores, and supermarkets across the continent. It is usually marketed in plastic tubs, squeeze containers, or vacuum-packed bags. Miso must be refrigerated.

Basic miso soup

    • 6 cups water
    • 4 tbsp soy sauce
    • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
    • black pepper to taste
    • 1 tsp grated ginger
    • 1 cup Chinese or regular cabbage, finely shredded
    • 2 carrots, thinly sliced
    • 4 – 5 fresh mushrooms, sliced or shiitake mushrooms
    • Half a cup snow pea pods
    • 1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
    • 4 green onions, sliced
    • 3 tbsp miso dissolved in ½ cup hot water

Place all ingredients except the last two in a soup pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes. Add miso and stir well. Garnish with green onions.

N.B. Leeks, okra, green beans, bean sprouts, potatoes, and peppers can also be used.

Article contributed by Hrayr Berberoglu, a Professor Emeritus of Hospitality and Tourism Management specializing in Food and Beverage. Books by H. Berberoglu



OTHER INGREDIENTS       Agar, agar-agar       Alligator       The Joy of Almonds       Angel's Share       Avocado Oil       Balsamic Vinegar Facts       Basmati Rice       Brown Rice Basics       Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire       Chocolate: To Be Or Not To Be       Chocolate       Chocolate, White Chocolate       Cocoa Trees & Beans       Flavored Oils       Flour Power I       Flour Power II       GRAS Food Additives       Honey       Honey Color and Flavor       Macadamia: A Nut From Hawaii       Maple Syrup: How Sweet It Is       Maple Syrup Facts       Meat & Poultry Additives       Mesquite       Mesquite Meal       Miso       Nitrates and Nitrites       Nut Season       Olive Oil       Pasta, A Noodle by any Other Name       Peanuts: International Taste Test       Pecans: A Nut from America       Pistachio Nuts       Rice Types & Varieties       Rice, You Want Rice With That?       Sherry Vinegar       Sorghum, Grain of the Future?       Tofu Tips and Hints       Vinegar       Walnuts       Water: Soaking Wet      Wild Rice       What is Yeast? (1905)


   Home        About Us & Contact Us        Cooking Contests        Free Magazines        Food Links  
Copyright notice




Popular Pages

FREE Food & Beverage Publications
An extensive selection of free magazines and other publications for qualified Food, Beverage & Hospitality professionals