Do you know about the Miso Miracle Food?
I firmly believe that miso [“me-so”] really is a miracle food. Good thing it is inexpensive, easy to get and very delicious. You do not need to be at all adventurous as this easily appeals to western tastes. Miso miracle? Yes!
One time I was talking with a dairy farmer about radiation and its effect on cattle, and especially on milk. When asked if he liked miso I kinda cracked-up when he replied: “Y’know? I don’t even know what a miso is.” There is really great news about miso. Best known for the soup (the soup with the little tofu cube that’s traditionally served with a Japanese meal), miso has been proven to have radio-protective properties, it tastes good and has been known for centuries as a healing food. Some say the darker the better. It’s a miso miracle.
With sea vegetables (mostly kelp) iodine is provided. This sometimes overlooked element is simply amazing. A lack or deficiency of iodine can have disastrous effects on one’s health. Consuming enough iodine can have incredible results ranging from better health all the way up to mental clarity. It’s so important it’s been added to “table” salt. Please understand that there are MUCH better sources for iodine than “table” salt. In the future I’ll explain why “table” salt should not be found on anyone’s table. Ever!
(I’ll expand on both miso and salt in the days ahead)
(Spoiler: “Table” salt has 4 ingredients: sodium, chloride, an anti-caking agent and iodine. Salts such as Fine Gray Celtic Sea Salt have 70 or 80 macro- and micro-nutrients. In my opinion “table” salt is poison, and Celtic Sea Salt is a health food. Be sure to get the fine unless you have a ceramic grinder. I also recommend the 5 pound bag made by Selina Naturally for about $50. MUCH more economical that way. My Amazon link is on this page and can be useful for this. On the Amazon search bar, click for the drop-down menu and change it to “All Departments” and search for Celtic Sea Salt)
A little about Miso
During the aftermath of the disaster in Fukushima, one branch of my research on radiation prevention and remediation landed me on the fermented soy product: miso! First used 2 or 3 centuries BC, it has been called a “complete food” (protein, minerals, vitamins and more) which one could survive on; many have. It’s a miso miracle and absolutely delicious with added sea vegetables for iodine, minerals and other important nutrients.
After the A-bomb in Hiroshima
There were two hospitals downwind from the explosion. One was using Western methods including the “white” diet…white bread, white sugar, white flour. The doctors, patients and staff of this hospital suffered widespread radiation sickness including nausea, vomiting, nosebleeds and probably cancers in their future. The other hospital located even closer to the explosion had a Japanese director who immediately put everyone, the doctors, patients and staff on a diet including miso soup. They experienced zero radiation sickness. Miso miracle.
I like this miso miracle story because it paints a picture and might be more eloquent than the countless scientific studies that have been performed.
A few conditions
Here is an impressive and long list of conditions which extensive studies (long-term & large number of people) have demonstrated can be treated, cured and/or prevented by as little as one bowl of miso soup per day! (two for cancer and heart disease). I’ve always said: eat like a (diabetic, heart patient, etc.) to avoid becoming one.
- Coronary Heart Disease (#1 cause of death in the US)
- Breast & other cancers (lung, liver, leukemia, prostate)
- Radiation sickness (nausea, bloody nose, and more) & resulting cancers
- Cardio- & Cerebrovascular disease (dysfunction of blood supply to brain/heart)
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol)
- Diabetes (blood sugar disorder)
- Liver cirrhosis (scarring)
- Peptic ulcers
- Chronic pain
- Osteoporosis (weakened bones – especially in non-dairy consumers)
- Food tenderizer
- Salting agent
- Pickling medium
- Antacid / digestive aid
- Anti-oxidant source
- Immune system enhancer
- Miso miracle s
Side effects: a sense of well-being and calm…(compare that to the side-effects from drugs)
Shelf life: a decade or more (refrigerated)
The darker the better. Organic. NEVER Pasteurized.
(If packaged/prepared, be sure it says “freeze-dried” for better quality)
Current favorite: Was Miso Master Red and Miso Master Barley mixed half-and-half, now it is the Barley by itself. The white is good, too!
Avoid all unfermented soy products like soy milk and tofu
(due to hormonal disruptions and blocking beneficial minerals)
I have about 2.5 cups every morning. My sweetie has about 1.5 cups. (4 cup recipe) Yum!
Because of the very high possibility (or certainty) that radioactive isotopes are present, and are being added to Japanese sea water and sea products like fish and sea vegetables, I no longer feel it safe use my beloved bonito powder. Therefore, these recipes need a very substantial update and edit to reflect the replacements I have discovered.
Now I make the “umami” (savory) component of my dashi (stock) by using dried shiitake mushrooms and kombu heated for about an hour in 140-160 degree water (never over 176).
For the fish component of the dashi, instead of the bonito powder or flakes, I borrow some of the stock water and use it with “niboshi” which is a dried anchovy product. I find niboshi in a little tub the frozen section of our market. Before I get a chance to do the edit, you can look up how to make niboshi dashi (and other dashis) online. [For 4 cups liquid, thaw, then remove heads and clean guts from 3 anchovies. Soak for 15 minutes in water borrowed from main stock pot. After soaking, simmer for 15 minutes and skim off the bitter tasting foam that forms with a sieve. Strain the resulting anchovy-flavored water back into the main dashi pot.]
SIMPLIFIED SPEEDY INSTRUCTIONS
Stir 2-4 t. miso paste into a cup of 160°F water.
Stir and drink…a little plain? –make some dashi (stock)
NEVER BOIL MISO! (preserve aroma/enzymes)
Current favorite: Miso Master brand from NC, (never Japan, China, or anywhere downwind of Fukushima). Barley is the saltiest, traditionally for winter, thought of as “for peasants,” and may have the most healing benefits. White is sweet, favored for summer, preferred by city-slickers, and still has many health benefits. Red is in between.
I had about 2.5 cups every morning for almost 2 years. My sweetie had about 1.5 cups. (total of 4 cup recipe)
I am making some right now!
Miso Cheat Sheet:
Cups Water Bonito Powder Miso Paste
1 <.5t (.4t/C) 2t
3 1.2t (<.5T) 6t (1.5-2T)
4 1.6t (>.5T) 8t (2T+ <1t) (or twice this amount – lol)
6 2.4t (<1T) 12t (3-4T) (1/4 C)
8 3.2t (>1T) 16t (5T+1t or less) (1/3 C)
10 4t (1T+1t) 20t (6T+ 2t or less) (.41C)
12 4.8t (<2T) 24t (8T or less) (1/2 C)
16 6.4t (>2T) 32t (10.6T) (2/3 C)
CAMPING / POT LUCK LONG LIST
Pure water (bring my Berkey purifier or a carboy)
Miso Master Organic miso paste – one, two or three kinds
Kombu and wakame, nori and other sea vegetable options
Dried Shiitake mushrooms
Pot large enough for soup (otherwise soup gets all over the place)
Whisk & Measures: 1T, 1/2T, 1t, 1/4C, 1/3C & 1/2 C
Knife / kitchen scissors (for nori and scallions)
Options: dulce, hijiki, other kelps, furikake, noodles
ELABORATE INSTRUCTIONS (4 C. for the two of us – daily ritual)
Because the radioactive isotopes have been and ARE BEING added EVERY DAY to Japanese everything including sea water and sea products like fish and sea vegetables, I no longer use bonito powder. I suspect I’ll never see a brick of katsuobushi. 🙁
There are two main components for the “dashi” (stock): the seafood component, and the “umame” (savory/yummy) part. Create umame with dried shiitake mushrooms and kombu, heated for about 30 to 60 minutes in 4 cups of 140-160 °F water. I add a handful of other sea veggies, too.
(never heat the seaweed over 176°F)
For the seafood component I borrow some of the pre-measured stock water and use it to bring 6 shrimp (raw, tails-on, Costco) to a boil. Through a strainer, I pour the shrimp stock back into the water that is soaking the kombu and shiitakes. I also have used “niboshi,” a dried anchovy product, as well as a frozen “stock fish” from an Asian store, although I’d question the sources now. The fish are a bit smaller than the anchovies. I find them in a little tub the frozen section of our market.
Vegetable and chicken dashi (stock) are great, too! I would still be sure to use dried shiitakes, and always use at least some kombu.
Here’s how I make niboshi dashi. For 4 cups liquid, thaw, remove heads and clean guts from 3 anchovies (some use a lot more). Soak for 15 minutes in water borrowed from main stock pot. Then, bring to a simmer for 15 minutes and skim or strain off the bitter tasting foam that forms. Strain the resulting anchovy-flavored water back into the main dashi pot where the kombu soaks. Discard the fish remains, eat them, add to soup, or save them to use a dish like tsukudani. Kombu can be also used a second time in certain dishes.
After the umame step (which liberates the glutamic acid), I again borrow some stock water from the main pot and boil (to soften) the shiitakes for about 5 or 10 minutes. Cut them into little pieces and divide between the pre-heated soup bowls. Replace the shiitake water back into the dashi/stock pot.
Before the final step of adding miso, and because some of the water has evaporated, be sure to re-measure the dashi. I use a marked chopstick like a dipstick. Take the level back up to 4 cups. Dashi can be made in advance and refrigerated for 4 or 5 days.
Those are some basics. Here are some specifics:
Cut some nori into each bowl and preheat in a 220°F oven.
Into a pan with 4 of cups water, add a 6” strip of kombu.
Add a few (3?) dried shiitake caps and some other sea veggies.
Bring this water up to 140-160°F for 30-60 minutes.
But first, pour some of the still cool dashi water into a small pan.
Add 6 raw shrimps and bring to a boil for about a minute.
Skim off any foam; pour remaining liquid back into dashi.
Add cold water to the small pan to stop shrimps from cooking.
Remove tails from shrimp, cut them into smaller pieces and divide.
Into a small pan, borrow some dashi water and all of the shiitakes.
Boil/simmer for about 10-15 minutes.
Remove shiitake stems and cut caps into smaller pieces.
Return water to dashi and divide shiitake pieces between bowls.
Re-measure dashi and add water to bring it back up to 4 C..
Heat dashi to 160-165°F (150°F might better preserve enzymes).
Remove kombu. Save or discard.
I make thin slices from about 2” and add to bowls.
Divide all the sea veggies between bowls.
Place 1/3 C. of miso (any ratio/mixture) into a pitcher.
Pour small amount of dashi into pitcher with miso and whisk.
Add more water and whisk more until smooth.
Add miso back into dashi.
Harvest and cut up a scallion from the window where they grow.
Bring dashi/miso up to 160°F and serve topped with little scallion pieces floating like lotus blossoms.
美味し Oishi! Delicious! Enjoy!
BOOK – I am very much enjoying The Miso Book by John and Jan Belleme. Besides many good recipes made with healthful food, they write about the science behind miso, the studies, and about their 9 month experience in Japan where they learned the traditional methods. Use the Amazon link on my developing website for ALL your Amazon purchases (see footer). You should have a copy of this book.
NOTE – I prefer veggies from an East Coast/Atlantic source. I use kombu, nori and the soup mix from this man. http://theseaweedman.com/
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