[Anime Culture Monday] Anime Recipes: Miso Tofu From Fune wo Amu (The Great Passage)

Welcome back everyone to another installation of Anime Recipes. Today, we are tackling how to cook food just like they do that NoitaminA dictionary anime Fune wo Amu. This actually appeared in episode three and miso tofu is a bit of a unique and versatile dish. It can be served as a snack as well as it can be served as a side dish to meals.

When it accompanies meals, it often can serve as a major part of the meal or as a dish to be shared with everyone. That is one of the joys of Japanese cooking is that there is always variety. Rarely will the meal only be one thing such as pizza, pasta, etc. Miso Tofu, or as it is better known as Miso fermented tofu is light, refreshing, and yet, packs a good flavor.

Miso Tofu from Fune wo Amu (The Great Passage)

Tofu has a bit of an odd role in the West compared to the East. Tofu can literally be introduced into any dish whatsoever here in Japan or even Asia because tofu is a flavor sponge. It accompanies almost any dish you can think of, and even recently, due to its nutritional value, has been used in sweets in order to reduce the amount of sugar and flour normally taken in when these are consumed. Tofu can even be made into ice cream to eliminate the unhealthy factors. The west just has an issue when it comes to tofu where we associate things with the dish we most likely see the ingredient in most of the time. So, since tofu only appears in Japanese and Asian cuisine that is what we relegate it to. Odd how that works, isn’t it?

Miso is a traditional Japanese seasoning that is made by combining fermented soybeans with salt, koji, and sometimes other small ingredients. Miso generally has a salty, umami (savory) flavor that allows it to be paired with meats, such as katsu and ramen, or with other major things such as vegetables and soups. It is also known to sometimes have sweet or earthy flavors. Miso comes in three general varieties, white, red, and awase or mixed. White tends to have the weakest flavor of the three and is what most westerners know as Miso soup. Red, on the other hand, is rich in flavor and is where the earthy and sweet variations come from. Eastern Japan, like Tokyo, tends to favor white miso, while red miso hails from the center of the country around Nagoya. Mixed miso, which generally has s light brown color, is an even balance between the two and is sold more in stores for those who prefer it.

Miso fermented tofu is simple, easy, delicious, goes great in bento, and is all-around fantastic. It is also incredibly diet friendly for those who like to snack, or are trying to make sure that they do not load themselves up on calories. This is a cold dish, so either enjoy it with a hot meal to get the flavor, temperature, and texture compliment or as a snack.

The other main thing one should know about miso is that it has a litany of health benefits. While it is salty, which is what people with high cholesterol should be mindful of, miso is rich in Vitamin B12 and is a probiotic. If you can eat it raw, say with veggie slices, that is the best, but hot or warm miso in something still gives you some benefit so you really have nothing to miss out on.

What you will need:

tofu
block

White, Red, or Awase will work. The darker your miso, the deeper the flavor.
tablespoons of miso.

ziploc bag

Optional Notes:

Daikon/radishes into the leftover miso for another take on the whole thing.


How to Cook It:

  1. 1

    This is the part that is important. You need to drain and slightly dry out the tofu. So, after removing it from the packaging, place it in a strainer, and let it drain out. If you can, let it sit on some paper towels for a few hours beforehand but if not, it is not the end of the world.
  2. 2

    Place some plastic wrap on your countertop and spread half of the miso paste on it.
  3. 3

    Once that is ready, slice your tofu block in half and place the halves on top of the miso.
  4. 4

    Use the rest of the miso paste to coat the top of the tofu and then close the plastic wrap.
  5. 5

    Place it on a plate and chill it for one hour.
  6. 6

    Take it out, slice it into cubes, and dig in!
  7. (Note: Be careful when cutting the tofu block. Do not cut your hand! )

Yum!

Final Thought

Simple, healthy, and all you really have to do is prep it and then slice it up, this is so simple. A compliment to any dish, you just gotta expand your horizons and then you will discover a whole new dish you may come to love. Plus, with a myriad of health benefits packed into miso, tofu already being good for your health, and the fact that it tastes good, you have nothing to lose! But enough about this great dish, is there anything that you want us to show you how to cook? Let us know as we are more than happy to help. Well, until next time!
Nagareboshi

Editor/Translator

Author: Nagareboshi

American by birth; international by choice. I am trying to bring attention to one of my favorite causes; me. I translate by day and write by night. Aspiring polyglot. My dream would be to be the personal translator for Amuro Namie. Other than that, my hobbies include languages, weightlifting, sleeping, karaoke, GOOD coffee and music. When I’m not doing any of the above, I am most likely laughing hysterically at Willam Belli videos or EV farming. I ain’t gunna Rupologize for it neither. Waifu are Shirai Kuroko & Euaerin.

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