Homemade miso

Yesterday at the Farmer’s Market I was happy to see that the Japanese farmer had remembered my request for miso. They make it for their family, but if you inquire, they will sell it by the pound. I’m starting out with one pound. It is truly a blessing to be able to have this miso. I’m pretty sure that I only ever bought it from the grocery store when I lived in Japan. It has a much heartier taste than any other miso I’ve ever cooked with; it is a dark red miso.

They also make takuan, a kind of yellow pickle made from daikon. But it is too early for that. You see it sold in Korean markets so they must eat it as well. There’s a nexus of foods between these two nations that I don’t entirely understand. When my daughter was in kindergarten we were living in Fort Lee, New Jersey in a neighborhood full of Asians. Her best friend was a little Korean girl across the street. One day she came home very excited. “Mommy, guess what? The Korean word for orange juice is the same as in Japanese!”

My daughter was still mostly in a Japanese speaking world at that point and for her orange juice was a Japanese word as in orenji juusu. So when her Korean friend used that same word she assumed that it came from Japanese. My son once asked me (in Japanese) how you said “tree” in English. Only he pronounced it “toree.” Lots of language stories in my house!

Today’s miso soup: Keeping it simple since my stomach is a bit upset. Tofu and scallions and the delicious miso from the farmer’s market. It practically glistens!



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