Roasting is my favorite way to cook vegetables. I rarely cook vegetables any other way. I usually just drizzle them with olive oil, sprinkle them with salt and pepper, and then roast at 400 until they are done to my liking. Super simple. But sometimes I want something a little different.
Enter miso paste.
While I was on my hunt for gochujang for Mande’s Korean Inspired Pork Tacos, I got lost in my local Asian market for about an hour. I love this place. One day I will have to post a photo, but it has ingredients in there that inspire me to seek out new recipes and try new things. I made mental note of about $50 worth of random ingredients that I wanted to come back to buy including spices, tea, noodles, sauces, and pastes.
The next week, I went back to buy some miso paste. Miso is a Japanese paste made of fermented soy beans and rice. It’s most famous for flavoring the pre-meal soup that comes standard with pretty much every dish at a Japanese restaurant. Some lesser-known uses for miso include salad dressings, ramen base, and my personal favorite, misoyaki, which is basically fish grilled with a miso glaze. While there are many types of miso, the most common are white (shiro) and red (aka). My favorite is the red, but a little goes a long way! If you don’t have an Asian market, you can get it here.
I had recently tried these roasted radishes, which are waaaay better than they sound. They are mellow and almost like a roasted potato, but more interesting. The lemon in this recipe made them slightly bitter, but when roasted without it, they are almost sweet. I wanted some variety in flavor, so I decided to add in carrots because I knew they would also be a perfect match for salty, nutty aka miso.
Miso is also a perfect match for ginger, so I knew I would be adding this flavor to the mix. You can easily use prepared grated ginger, but fresh ginger is so worth the effort. It is very pungent compared to the kind you store in your fridge, and it complements umami flavors so well. I try to buy ginger with smooth, taut skin and very chubby and long sections. Easier to work with.To prepare, break off a section and peel off the skin with a standard veggie peeler (or some say the back of a spoon works, but not well enough for me to bother with that). Then, use a special ginger grater with a piece of plastic wrap over it to catch all the juices. I just recently broke mine, but I have my eye on this one. If you do a lot of Asian cooking and have access to fresh ginger, this is tool is worth the minimal space it takes up in your drawer.
So, thanks to my new favorite market, miso-ginger roasted veggies happened. Miso, ginger, soy, mirin, butter, brown sugar. They are the perfect side for roasted salmon, and they’re pretty good for you, too. Yum!
|MISO-GINGER ROASTED ROOT VEGGIES
2 cups halved baby carrots
2 cups quartered radishes
1 tbs miso paste
1 tbs mirin
½ tbs soy sauce
½ tbs grated ginger
2 tbs melted butter
2 tsp brown sugar