chicken broth miso soup




This was an excuse to use up more of the smoked salmon. While at it, I poached an egg inside a ramekin floated in the pasta water. Tossed in a couple of frozen shrimp. The rest is the usual suspects plus feta cheese sprinkled on top, because I'm a bit long on feta right now, and a tablespoon of that stupendous mayonnaise which has a limited refrigerator life because this time it isn't cooked. A very small handful of spaghetti noodles were broken in half for manageability. This is the chicken broth made earlier pictured above in its gelatinous aspic form. The miso is a specialized brand not readily available in supermarkets. It's a notch above ordinary miso, actually it's the pinnacle of miso,  made the traditional way by guys donning special cotton socks and smashing the cooked beans underfoot. HaHaHa. I'm totally serious.

What? Don't believe me? NYT article on Owner, Christian Elwell, unfortunately behind their subscriber firewall. Apparently, I'm allowed due to my crossword subscription. A snippet:

Over two days the koji is stacked and restacked in trays, in special formations to cultivate slow, healthy growth. Mr. Elwell adds sea salt, which he imports from Baja California, and mixes in soaked and cooked beans.

Workers pull on cotton socks and plastic booties and pound the mixture with their feet, like winemakers of long ago. It takes about an hour to tread 600 pounds of miso.

“It’s the difference between receiving a loving massage from a human being and one from a roll-back chair,” he said in his office, which smelled pleasantly malty and sweet from the beans and grain fermenting — for as long as three years — in cypress vats downstairs. “That energetic quality that goes into the food creates a different quality in the food itself.”

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