Healthy eaters are having a love affair with fermented foods right now.
And while you can pack more probiotics into your diet by making homemade kimchi or sneaking sauerkraut into your meals, there’s another option that’s easy, delicious, and great for your gut health: miso.
Chef Saehee Cho, who runs SOO N Foods in Los Angeles, has been experimenting with the salty fermented soybean paste—both Japanese miso and Korean doenjang—in new ways. AKA, no soup bowl required.
“I’ve been using doenjang in non-Asian applications lately because it gives a more interesting salty aspect to my dishes,” explains Cho, whose stunning Instagram page shows off her talents, and who shares her chanterelle mushroom risotto dish with us.
Read on for Cho’s recipe, as well as five other inventive ways to cook with miso or doenjang. —Diana Ryu
(Photo: Nutrition Stripped)
With this recipe (hand-drawn by Cho, below), she says, “Both doenjang and the mushrooms have an earthy note so they round out the salty part of the dish well. Depending on what’s available I’ll also add some bright vegetables to add sweetness—maybe peas or carrots or buttery onions and top with a runny egg because the fattiness of the egg yolk pulls everything together.”
(Photo and illustration: Soo N Food)
“I have a serious addiction to miso,” says nutritionist and blogger McKel Hill on her awesome site Nutrition Stripped. She calls this recipe her quick fix, saying it takes 10 minutes, tops. The secret to her speed? She batch-cooks each of the super nutritious ingredients for mix-and-match use over several days—a great idea.
(Photo: Nutrition Stripped)
Raw veggies get a brand new partner with this dip, which owes its distinctive, addictive flavor to miso and gochujang, a hot-and-sweet Korean fermented chili paste that’s now popping up on menus like New York City’s Dirt Candy. (It’s the secret weapon in their Korean fried broccoli.)
2 Tbsp. soybean paste (either Korean doenjang or Japanese miso)
1/2 cup gochujang
4 cloves garlic
2 sprigs of scallion
Sesame oil to taste
Many of us aren’t used to the words “butter” and “healthy” being used together—but the grass-fed, unsalted variety has lots of fans on the wellness scene these days.
I Am a Food Blog‘s recipe combines the creaminess of butter, the nuttiness of miso, and the tart green goodness of asparagus. Here’s another word for you: Yum!
(Photo: I am a Food Blog.)
If you’re as excited about spiralizing your veggies as half the population is, this dish lets you to pasta-fy some zucchini for your miso. The recipe is from Ali Maffucci’s site Inspiralized (the spiralizer addict’s blog of choice) and is an amazing cold “noodle” salad that you can make ahead and bring to work for a veggie-filled, gut healthy lunch.
The dressing for this slaw, from brainiac Sara Forte at Sprouted Kitchen, is what makes it special. It’s a mixture of miso and Greek yogurt (yes, you heard right), so it takes the the fermented factor up a notch.
(Photo: Sprouted Kitchen)