Well Dined

2Feb/170

Japanese Shakshuka with Kabocha Squash

Well Dined | Japanese Shakshuka with Kabocha Squash

I get a lot of emails with recipes from blog subscriptions, magazines, etc...  Some I delete, knowing they aren't my style.  Most I archive to make later.  Very few inspire me to make them ASAP; this recipe was one of those few.  Shakshuka is a dish of Egyptian, Tunisian, Algerian, and Moroccan origin that consists of eggs poached in spiced tomato sauce.

Well Dined | Japanese Shakshuka with Kabocha Squash

This recipe, from Bessou restaurant in NYC (via Tasting Table), puts a Japanese spin on the dish.  It was that fusion element that caught my eye.  The tomato sauce is spiced with Japanese curry powder and cumin.  Roasted kabocha squash is added, along with poached eggs.  The original is topped with miso marinated tofu - I went for miso flavored labneh, instead.  Lastly, it is sprinkled with pomegranate seeds, and served with toasted Japanese milk bread.

Well Dined | Japanese Shakshuka with Kabocha Squash

The tomato sauce is so fragrant and spicy (the original recipe uses harissa, too, but the curry powder was enough heat for me).  It is counterbalanced by the sweet squash, tart pomegranate seeds, cool labneh, and creamy egg yolk.  The squash and the pomegranate add varying texture, too, along with the crispy toast.  And the miso adds this funky umami note that adds to the complexity.  Dipping that perfectly crispy toast into the runny yolk and velvety tomato sauce is just so insanely satisfying.

14Apr/140

Miso Butter Four Ways

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This innocent looking container holds a magic ingredient that will take your food to the next level.  What is it?  Miso butter.  Two ingredients - miso and butter - combine to make a perfect substance.  So simple, but so good.  You could just slap this on some toast and call it a day.  But if you want to get a little more creative, I have a bunch of ideas for you.

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First up - scallops seared in miso butter.  That's it, it's that easy.  I served these with my other miso obsession - miso creamed kale.

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Next - broiled salmon topped with miso butter, served with miso butter glazed baby carrots and coconut-miso barley.

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Moving away from seafood for a bit, I made this coconut chicken recipe and replaced the regular butter with miso butter.  It made it so much better than the original, which I was already a fan of.  I also used cherry preserves in the sauce because that's what I had, but apricot or peach would work better.  I made a side salad with romaine, sliced radishes, blanched green beans, and a carrot-ginger dressing to go with it.

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Lastly, we have a stir-fry made with miso butter.  Fast, easy, and delicious.  The salmon was broiled with a store-bought red miso and yuzu glaze.  I'd say it wasn't any better than the salmon topped with the miso butter.

Best of all?  All these meals are healthy and low-carb.  Most of them are grain-free!  What would you do with your miso butter?

20Feb/141

Miso Creamed Kale

Well Dined | Miso Creamed Kale

Oh my gosh, you guys, I am in kale heaven.  Now I already like kale - raw in salads, in a Tuscan white bean soup, baked into crispy chips.  But this, THIS, is the single most delicious way to eat kale ever.

Well Dined | Miso Creamed Kale

Cooked down with garlic and shallots in butter, then finished with sherry, cream, and miso - swoon.

Well Dined | Miso Creamed Kale

But we don't even stop there, oh no, we add buttery mushrooms with soy on top - oh my gaaaaaaaaaaawd.

Well Dined | Miso Creamed Kale

I served it as a side with teriyaki salmon, which I'm not even going to talk about because the kale totally stole the show.  If you like kale, go make this right now and rejoice.  If you don't like kale, go make this right now and become a believer.  And then invite me over, so that I can eat some too.

20Jan/140

Miso Tahini Soup

Well Dined | Miso Tahini Soup

After a bit of a hiatus, Melissa (Smells Like Brownies) and I are getting back to our weekly vegetarian lunches.  Last week we tried this amazing soup recipe packed with veggies.  It is warm and comforting, with lots of flavor and texture - plus it's really easy to make.  It's also both vegan and vegetarian friendly.  And gosh, isn't it pretty?

Well Dined | Miso Tahini Soup

The soup starts out with sliced squash (we used acorn) and tiny cubes of turnip simmered in water until tender.  At first I thought that one small squash and one turnip wouldn't be enough, but they turned out to be plenty!  So don't go overboard and think that you need to get more/bigger.  The cooking water then becomes the base for the broth and miso, tahini, and lemon zest are added to round it out.

Well Dined | Miso Tahini Soup

You can garnish the soup however you like, but we stuck with the original recipe and used avocado, chives, toasted nori, and toasted sesame seeds.

Well Dined | Miso Tahini Soup

The soup can be served over a grain, and we choose to try out buckwheat.  We are both avoiding white rice for health reasons and thought this grain-like seed would be fun to try.  Unfortunately it cooks to a porridge like consistency instead of individual grains.  So I would recommend barley or brown rice instead.

21Mar/121

Japanese Braised Salmon

More salmon!  I am always questing for tasty salmon recipes so that we will eat more of this super healthy fish (note that it is only super healthy when it is wild caught Pacific/Alaskan; farm raised Atlantic salmon is full of toxins).  This recipe makes super tender, super moist salmon that is packed with sweet and salty flavors.