Tell me about miso soup

I have heard miso soup being touted as a healthy meal and a good source of soy. Wikipedia has a short article about the soup, but I still can’t really define was it is. What does it taste like, look like, etc? What are some good recipes for a beginner for try? And is it really that good?

It tastes like making soup from a well-used dishrag. But, in a good way. I like it.

Miso soup is made using a soybean-derived paste (miso). This paste is stirred into the water/broth. The miso partly dissolves, largely does not. You end up with a cloudy soup. But it is quite, quite yummy. Meaty, but vegetal all at the same time. Generally, you also add other things to the soup, in very spare amounts—seaweed, mushrooms, etc.

I’d recommend going to a Sushi joint and trying it there first. If you make it wrong you might think you don’t like Miso soup and have it ruin you on it for life. Miso is great, and a great source of soy. The flavor comes from seaweed, the Miso itself and scallions usually.

It’s a little salty, and you need to mix it every now and then because the miso separates from the water.

It looks like this.

I love miso soup. I like mine with udon noodles, but restaurants don’t serve it that way.

Miso Soup is delicious, but it doesn’t stop there.

The Miso paste (from which the soup is made) is available in a variety of “strengths”. Generally the darker the paste, the stronger the flavour. Check out your local asian market for examples.

The paste is a great base to make other things from.

Salad Dressing:

1/4 cup Miso Paste
Tablespoon Sesame Oil
White pepper (to taste)
Small dribble (1/4 tsp) asian red vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup hot water OR Japanese Style Mayonaise

Stir well, let cool in frdge, and use on a salad of bean sprouts, chopped green onions, shredded carrot and daikon (Chinese White radish)
Marinate for chicken

!/4 cup miso paste
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1/4 cup sesame oil
crushed dried chilis (to taste/optional)
1/4 cup warm water

Stir ingrediants together, and then marinate thinl strips of chicken(in fridge) for a few hours. stir fry with chopped green onions
Dipping Sauce

1/4 cup miso sauce
tablespoon Soya sauce
1/4 cup corn syrup
chrushed dried chilis (to taste)
Mix ingrediants, microwave briefly (30-45 seconds) until hot, stir again, pour into dipping bowl, serve hot or cold. Nice with green onion cakes, shrimp chips or veggies/tempura
Play with the ingrediants in these as you see fit…


I’m not picking a fight, but I’m struck by the phrase “a good source of soy”. Sure it is. And mushroom soup is a good source of mushrooms and onion soup a good source of onions and, well, you get the picture. What’s so good about soy? I mean, I like miso soup and all, but I never eat it because I find myself deficient in soy products.

Bill Door Soy Protein for vegetarians.

Soy protein can also be of benefit to women because of the phytoestrogens, so “good source of soy” makes sense in that context, as well. I don’t like soy milk and would rather ingest things naturally than take pills.

Of course, according to World Net Daily, “Soy Makes Kids Gay.” :rolleyes:

The benefit of phytoestrogens remains pretty much hypothetical at this time.

Absolutely true, scientifically and medically speaking, and mea culpa for not being more specific. I should have known better.

However, several women in my circle swear that when they began including soy either via the OTC supplement, soy milk, or tofu, their PMS/menopausal symptoms diminished and they experienced an improvement in overall wellbeing. (I can also vouch personally for an improvement in mood on their part.)

My apologies for not qualifying my statement.

A well-made miso soup should be light. Never too salty, too sweet or too fishy.

Have you ever had home canned green beans about a week before the new crop of green beans is ripe- that is, a year old jar of green beans? There’s a weird salty taste when you boil it up. You can get the same flavor from any can of green beans, but it develops the longer you let it sit. (This memory is originally from a time- kindergarten- when every dinner and most lunches at Gramma’s house, even on pizza night, had to be accompanied by a homemade jar of Blue Lake variety green beans, by order of me. I doubted my memory, because small children are not reliable- then I got my own green beans. I was right.)

Miso is a lot that weird taste, amplified. In a very, very good way. It’s salty and goes well with a variety of other flavors. You can even use it mixed with orange juice to make a salad dressing, if you trust the lid of the miso in my fridge.

Of course, if you’re in a hurry, Kikkoman makes an instant Tofu Miso Soup pack. They come in packs of 3 for about a dollar or two. It’s about the equivalent of most instant meals, but I bring them to work often. It’s the “add boiling water and eat” type.

Brendon Small

Here in Japan miso soup is a standard dish for most families. You can add a lot of different types of veggies, and mothers usually have their own distictive taste. It can be a big deal when a son marries and the new wife doesn’t cook the same way. Although this can be seen with other foods, it’s generally talked about with miso soup.

I generally make it with either onions, satsumaimo (sweet potatos) or egg plant.

Oh, man, now I’m hungry. My favorite hibachi restaurant opens every meal with a bowl of miso soup (razor-thin sliced mushrooms and onions in broth) and a salad with miso dressing.

Ah, miso horny. :stuck_out_tongue:

Yes. Mix miso paste with maple syrup, spread it on salmon, and grill. Yum.

Hey, OneCentStamp, which restaurant?

It’s called Tepanyaki, and sadly, it’s not in Houston (it’s in Utah).

Don’t buy packaged miso soup for your first experience. Go to a sushi bar or a Japanese or Korean restaurant – most of them will sell you a hot bowl of miso soup for about a dollar.