Boring Bolognese? Meh Meatloaf? Miso will make youso happy.
Someone said to me recently, knowing that we sell small-batch miso, that they knew a great guy to get local soy from. Their face twisted into comical confusion when I told them “Thanks! But Jordan doesn't use soy.”
I’ve never questioned Jordan’s miso ingredient choices or why he never uses soy. Afterall, he’s the chef and I’m the lucky person who gets to eat his food. But the other day I decided to ask.
His answer? Because everyone else does. He already knows what it will taste like.
If you know Jordan, this is not a surprising response. His relationship with food is as much about experimentation as it is feeding and nurturing.
And if you know me, I am rarely satisfied with one answer.
If you can use all of these ingredients, making magical concoctions like some kind of mold wizard, then why do people use soy so much? His response was that it has high protein content, which the mold loves to eat and convert into amino acids, creating umami-rich flavors.
Our batches are small and he likes to keep things exciting by mixing up ingredients and waiting for months to taste the result.
However, he does have stand-bys that you’ll see pop up regularly, namely lentil, split-pea, and raw almond. He uses Jasmine rice as the substrate in almost all of these.
The first two can be used in the same way as any soy-based miso would be: seasoning paste, marinade, or an addition to gravies, sauces, and vinaigrettes. Brushing it onto meats or veggies while grilling is a simple way to punch more flavor into your meal.
The nut misos can’t be used as interchangeably as the other two but they come with their own set of superpowers. Jordan’s favorite thing to do with almond miso is mix it with soft butter into a smooth paste and encrust fish with it. Because the almonds are still raw, they’ll toast while cooking and create a salty-umami-toasted-nuts flavor. Like a tiny miracle on your plate.
Feeling creative? Put on your crazy pants and add some nut miso to your chocolate chip cookie dough, brownie batter, or banana bread cake mix. It replaces the salt and lifts the flavors around it.
For a simpler dish, reduce heavy cream and add the almond miso for an instant pasta sauce.
It doesn’t blend well into soup, so steer clear of broth.
Most miso Jordan makes is versatile and he encourages everyone to play with their food, adding miso to your hearty staples, like meatloaf, stews, meatballs, and roasted vegetables.
His favorite dish to incorporate umami into? Golabkis. A Polish dish his Nana always made.
Think of miso as your trusted recipes’ new best friend. They’ll hold hands. They’ll Netflix and chill. And they’ll be delicious.