Product Review #1: South River Miso

There are a lot of great products that we use on a daily basis here, so we thought we would share them with you. One of our favorite go-to condiments is miso. A few years ago we found South River Miso and haven't strayed away from them since. It is the most authentic miso we have found and the taste, texture, and quality cannot be matched. Miso is loaded with active enzymes, a host of probiotics, and adds earthy, rich flavors to your culinary creations. I find nothing as soothing and warming to the soul as a cup of warm miso soup. So, what is miso exactly?

Traditional miso is created with 3 basic ingredients, beans (soy, barley, chickpeas, or adzuki bean etc.), brown rice, and koji (Aspergillus oryzae). There are 3 different types of miso white, red, and black. To make miso, it must undergo 2 fermentations. First, the rice is innoculated with the koji spores in a warm cellar. After the beans of choice are cooked, they are then mashed and the rice mixture is added in and incorporated. This mixture will then go into barrels where it is fermented again for 3 months to 3 years. The final product is rich and robust in flavor, slightly sweet and salty.

How's it Taste?

Miso is very salty and savory. It has that umami quality that is often associated with MSG. Because of the foot treading process, every batch of miso will taste slightly different. The beans used as the base of the recipe will also effect the flavor. White miso, the lighter of the 3 types, will be the sweetest tasting miso and the most delicate in flavor.

Unique Wild Food Ingredients

South River Miso has several seasonal recipes that are incredible. Their roasted red pepper and garlic flavor with nettle leaf is amazingly delicious. How about a dandelion and wild leek flavor? Yes please!

How to use Miso

Miso is most often used in soups, especially at Japanese or sushi restaurants. A flavorful broth is created using dashi (bonito flakes) then garnished with various ingredients like chopped vegetables, scallions, and sometimes tofu. If done properly, the miso is stirred in at the end. If continually cooked, the active enzymes naturally found in the miso will be destroyed leaving it less nutritious.

In the past, I have aged sliced vegetables like beets, carrots, and onions in miso paste for several months. Other ways to incorporate miso is to make dressings, vinaigrettes, and spreads.

Is miso healthy?

Miso has been around for centuries, and this time tested condiment is still widely used today for good reasons. It is a good source of protein, minerals, and vitamins, especially vitamin K2, which is hard to come by in the plant kingdom. Because of the fermentation process, miso is loaded with beneficial bacteria, making it a optimal source of probiotics.

Have you experimented with miso? Got a favorite flavor? How do you love to incorporate miso into your kitchen?

South River Miso is available in many health food stores across America, but if you can't find it, click this link and have it delivered to your doorstep!

To see exactly how South River Miso Company produces it's amazing products, click the link below.