9.16.2009

Washoku Warriors - Miso Month

Fall Fruits With Flavored Miso Sauce


This month's Challenge for the Washoku Warriors consisted of an array of miso-based sauces to choose from, an optional fish dish and finally some desserts (again, as a choice) featuring summery or autumnal fruits.
I went for citrusy miso (replacing yuzu with lemon) and pungent red miso sauce. (The citrusy miso is the light part ying/yang sign blotch in the picture above, the red miso the dark part ying/yang sign blotch.)
Both miso sauces are very easy to prepare. They are arranged with thinly sliced apples and plums as a fall fruit dessert. I liked the lemon/apple combination, while the plum and red miso sauce turned out a bit too salty. Probably I didn't let it cool down enough before adjusting the taste.

I skipped the fish (miso-marinated broiled fish) for the time being but plan on making it some time in the coming weeks. Fresh fish is not easy to get here. There is a fishmonger in a town nearby but this requires a special trip on Saturday morning.

Another dessert (which I didn't make) of this month was poached peaches in lemon-ginger miso sauce. To prepare this you need an otoshi-buta (dropped lid), which is a lid slightly smaller than the diameter of your pot thus resting directly on the food. I hadn't heard about this before and thought it would be a fancy Japanese technique. So I was very surprised when I saw a food programme where a chef made a braised rabbit dish, covering it with a disk of heavy aluminium foil fitting just inside the pot. He went on to explain that this is a classic French cooking method called a cartouche. Great things get invented multiple times. :)

Finally, Rachel proposed a little extra challenge and asked us to get creative with our pictures.
A little while ago, Marc from no recipes posted an interview with chef Nishihara of Kajitsu restaurant in New York. When asked about advice for understanding Japanese cooking, chef Nishihara summed it up with: "If adding doesn’t work, take away.". To keep with that spirit, I produced a black/white version.
Update: Rachel posted a poll to determine the most creative entry. Please head over and choose your favourite. :)

4 comments:

Petra said...

I love your Fall Fruits presentation, so pretty!

Fuji Mama said...

I love the word "blotch"--hehehehe. I also loved your story about the inspiration behind the black and white photo!

nicole said...

this plating is absolutely beautiful.
does this plate have a design in the top-left or is it completely blank?

Andreas said...

@nicole: The top left is a design on the plate.
If I could do this level of presentation by hand, I'd get myself a job as a food stylist.
;)