Although I cannot follow a recipe , I do love to read them, because they provide me with endless inspiration. For example, my M is for Miso entry in Heather ‘s Meatless MondaysA-Zchallenge comes from first seeing a recipe for Creamy Miso-Garlic Grits on Made Just Right, and then loving Ashley ‘s Weird Food Movementcontribution of Grain-Free Parsnip Porridge. Combine those two ideas with my own rice-free Winter Squash Riso-faux, and the result is an (almost) grain-free Japanese influenced Mushroom Daikon Miso-tto. I actually intended to use parsnips. But there were no loose parsnips to be found–and I refused to spend $3.49 for a one-pound bag.
Yet, what was next to the blank shelf where parsnips should be? Daikon.
Unless you encounter mutant, claw-shaped daikon at the farmers’ market, these Japanese radishes do look a whole lot like parsnips. [My roommate even asked what I was using parsnips for while I was concocting...] Unlike a parsnip, however, the softer daikon has the peppery sharpness of a radish, which might be a bit abrasive upon raw nibble. [Especially when processed together with raw garlic, sweet onion, and jalapeno.]
But don’t let any ‘can’t wait to taste it’ first bites fool you.
It turns into the perfect texture for grain-free riso-faux and also has a high water content, making it even easier to cook into a porridge-like consistency.
To balance the bitter, you need to bring in some umami-vokingmellowing agents.
this is a new mellow mushroom.
Dried shitakes and oyster mushrooms from the bulk bins at Whole Foods cooked up quickly with the daikon, infusing their earthiness into the dish. Dried ginger, coriander, and a pinch of cinnamon–why not?–along with some rice vinegar and soy sauce add even more intrigue.*
*If only I had the sunglass-wearing, secret agent smiley right now…
Oh, and of course, the miso. I love miso. (I may or may not have added three times the serving size for one portion of this miso-tto.) This fermented soybean paste is slightly sweet, very yeasty, and provides a subtle saltiness that really rounds out the flavor of a recipe. It’s also made with rice (or other grains), so this was about the time I realized this wasn’t a completely grain-free recipe after all.
Adding water just to help the mushrooms soften to your liking, that’s really all there is to it.
If the taste is still too peppery for you–despite overloading with mushrooms (oops)–you can drizzle in some agave or honey, which will brighten the flavor. Crumbled or cooked tofu on top would add a protein boost to make a more complete meal, but if you are like me you are going to be solely concerned with the fact that this is a monochromatic dish. If the purposeful use of a green bowl doesn’t mollify your disconcertion, you can always turn to a few sprigs of cilantro, or slivers of snow peas. Mushroom Daikon Miso-tto[Makes 4 cups]
1 lb. daikon radish, sliced or chopped
1 cup sweet onion, diced [130g]
2 cloves garlic
1 jalapeno, seeded
3 oz. dried mushrooms (shitake, oyster, button)
1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground coriander
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
2-3 tsp. rice vinegar
2-3 tsp. agave or honey (optional)
2-3 tsp. soy sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp. mellow white miso (or more if you LOVE it like I do…)
fresh cilantro or slivered snow peas, for serving
Combine daikon, onion, garlic, and jalapeno in a food processor. Process until finely chopped.
In a large saucepan, combine daikon mixture and dried mushrooms. Add water to moisten mushrooms.
Cook until water begins to simmer.
Stir in seasonings, except miso.
Continue to add water in small amounts and cook until mushrooms have softened to your liking.
Once excess water is almost cooked off, stir in miso. Cook a few more minutes.