The foundation of many Japanese dishes, Dashi is a Japanese soup stock that is usually prepared with only one or two ingredients. It's far from a back-breaking process as it only takes 20-30minutes to prepare this umami-rich broth!
I won't delve into the history, variations, etc as I'm clearly no expert in this. But I have done enough research and trials to share this Awase Dashi recipe with you. Awase means to combine, and this recipe calls for the combination of two common dashi ingredients: Katsuoboshi (bonito flakes) and Kombu (kelp). It's a marriage made in heaven!
Cook & Prep Time: 20 minutes
1 litre of water
15g Kombu (dried kelp)
15g Katsuoboshi (bonito flakes)
Cooking Directions : 1. Wipe the kelp with a dry cloth to remove any visible dirt. Don't remove the white powdery substance on the surface or you'll lose all the flavours!
2. Make some slits on the kelp with a pair of scissors to aid the release of flavours.
3. Add water and kelp into a small pot. Set to medium heat.
4. Skim off any scum that starts to form on the surface.
5. When you can see tiny bubbles starting to form (5-10minutes depending on the intensity of your medium heat), remove the kelp.
6. Turn the heat up slightly and when small bubbles rise to the surface, add bonito flakes and turn the heat off.
7. Wait for a few minutes or for the bonito flakes to sink to the bottom of the pot.
8. Strain the dashi through a fine sieve.
And your Awase dashi is ready to use!
You can store the remaining dashi in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to a month. It really is a great base for soups, stews and many other dishes (fancy ramen, anyone?).
Plus, the leftover bonito flakes and kombu can be used to make tasty side dishes as well. Perhaps I'll feature those next time.
Till the next cook, stay safe & makan well!