How to Make Dashi from Scratch...

Dashi is a Japanese stock, and it is the essential ingredient in many Japanese dishes. It is a base of many soups, dips, and sauces.

There are three ways to make dashi: you can use dashi packets (similar to a tea bag), instant dashi powder or make dashi from scratch. Making dashi from scratch and very easy and quick. 

 

Dashi packets and instant dashi.

 

Japanese people make different types of dashi depending on types of food they plan to prepare. 

Awase Dashi ("combination stock"), a stock made with dried kelp (kombu) and bonito flakes (katsuobushi), and it is all-purpose stock. There are two types of Awase Dashi: Ichiban Dashi, the "number one" stock, which is the first stock you cook using bonito flakes and kelp, and the Niban Dashi, the stock "number two", cooked by reusing bonito flakes and kelp from Ichiban Dashi.  Niban dashi is lighter in taste, but still full of umami. I like it to serve it as simple soup with soba noodles and micro herbs.  You can reuse bonito flakes and kelp for the third time by making homemade Furikake, delicious rice seasoning.  

Iriko Dashi, a stock made of dried anchovies which are more affordable in price than bonito flakes. Iriko Dashi is commonly used in making miso soup. 

There are also vegetarian versions of dashi, Kombu Dashi, made with dry kelp (kombu) and Shiitake Dashi, made with dried shiitake mushrooms. 

 

Shiitake Dashi (left) and Awase Dashi (right)

 

Furikake

 

There are two recipes of dashi I'm sharing with you today, Awase Dashi and Shiitake Dashi. 

 

NOTES:

- I shop for my ingredients during my travels to Asia, but nowadays you can easily find everything you need at your local Asian grocery store or on Amazon. 

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