Miso on toast

Miso and peanut butter on toast, mmmm

I had always thought of miso as a salty, savory ingredient for making soup or flavoring beans and rice. Then a friend gave me a tub of creamy white miso that had a sweet taste with just a hint of salt and I discovered I could spread it on toast with peanut butter. It’s the best thing to happen to breakfast since Vegemite.

While miso is usually produced using soy beans, you can make many different kinds with varying tastes using other ingredients, from buckwheat to garbazno beans. On top of that, its flavor changes depending on how many weeks, months, or years(!) you ferment it. White miso only takes a few weeks, which I suspect is why it’s still sweet; the microorganisms don’t have enough time to eat all the sugars. You can order some from South River Miso in Conway, Massachusetts.

White MIso from www.marumikouji.jp

My Japanese is only as good as a Google translation, but I understand pictures and I think this is what I have been spreading on my bread. Here it is in English translation.

My friend offered to send me some more, but I think I should try to make my own. A few weeks is not too long to wait.

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  1. Eli Brown’s avatar

    New to the website and loving it. My first attempt at miso (not sweet) should be ready for sampling next month (july) sometime. I’ve got one soy and one garbonzo bean batch. I live in Oakland and if you’d like to try the miso I’ll be happy to share but can’t promise it’ll turn out…

  2. lowrah’s avatar

    Please tell us if you succeeded, and where you got your culture from!!

  3. Eli Brown’s avatar

    Hey Lowrah– For my garbanzo bean miso I made my own koji (inoculated rice) from aspergillus spores I bought from Gem Cultures:

    http://www.gemcultures.com/soy_cultures.htm

    But unfortunately my inept rice steaming led to a very wet base and resulted in something between sake and miso. I use it for cooking stir-fried veggies etc.

    For the soybean miso I used pre-made koji bought dry from Berkeley Bowl in Berkley CA. (Can be found in many stores with large Asian sections and in Japantowns.) This batch is much more successful. The miso is now a year old and has a very rich nuanced and delicious flavor. Better than store bought miso. I’ve been using it in small batches as I need it and letting the rest age. Thanks for your interest!

  4. The Peak Oil Poet’s avatar

    i was searching for bulk vegemite because the stuff is so incredibly expensive

    then i found a site that talked about Nattō and it mentioned that there was a taste similarity to vegemite

    from there i went to my fridge and pulled out the miso and banged some on some toast

    eureka – i no longer need to buy vegemite

    now i am looking around and discover that others have discovered miso on toast

    and miso is soo much cheaper than vegemite

    next step – make my own miso

    ee-haa up yours Kraft you thieving #$@%ers

    pop

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