Miso is a delicate, living food, so take care to add it at the end of cooking. It’s good practice to remove your dish from heat and then stir in miso. If reheating, use low heat and bring to a light simmer. Avoid boiling.
- For a quick and easy miso broth, mix 2 cups of water with 2 tablespoons of miso. Adjust the amount according to the type of miso used and your taste preference. Add any desired ingredients.
- For miso mayonnaise, combine 1/3 cup of mayonnaise with 2 tablespoons of white miso. Use in salads or on sandwiches — anywhere you would use mayonnaise.
- Miso marinade or basting sauce is delicious with tofu, chicken, beef or salmon. Mix 2 tablespoons of red miso, 1 teaspoon of canola oil, 1/2 teaspoon of agave nectar, 1/2 teaspoon of grated ginger, 1/4 teaspoon of minced garlic and 2 tablespoons of water.
- If smaller containers are available at your grocery store, try buying a variety of miso flavors to test in different recipes.
- Miso paste will keep several months in the refrigerator. For miso in plastic bags, take care to remove excess air from the bag after opening, or move the miso to an airtight container. If purchasing in bulk, buy from vendors who practice safe food handling and be sure the miso is fresh.
Chef Cary Neff is the president of the consulting firm Culinary Innovations and the author of the New York Times bestseller Conscious Cuisine (Sourcebooks, 2002).