Today, I am going to highlight a special ingredient that I used in the sauce… Miso! Miso is usually a soy product but these days they have many different forms that don’t contain soy. Being I can’t eat soy I decided to try a new product (to me). Chickpea miso!
Unpasteurized miso is a living fermented food containing a vast store of natural digestive enzymes, Lactobacillus, and other probiotic microorganisms, which aid in the digestion and assimilation of all types of foods. On top of all of this, miso is an excellent probiotic. Because of its low pH, it is able to get past the stomach acid intact allowing for the active probiotics to effectively enter the small intestine.
Miso also contains enzymes that inhibit the overgrowth of bad bacteria within the digestion system. South River Miso (the brand I use) is a fermented, unpasteurized, living food. It will continue to ferment in the jar. This may cause pressure to build up and, especially during warm weather, leakage is likely, this is normal occurrence . I found mine at a local health food store. So check your surrounding stores. If you can’t find any and you want to give it a try, you can order it from here.
Each variety of miso has its own distinctive flavor and aroma. For darker miso, the flavor is savory, almost meat-like, and rich in protein. The lighter types are relatively sweet, more lively and refreshing to taste. To sensitive palates, no two varieties of miso taste the same; the range of colors, textures, and aromas is as varied as the ingredients used. For example here are the South River Brand varieties:
Sweet White Miso
Ingredients: Deep well water, lightly polished organic brown rice, organic soybeans, sun-dried sea salt, organic sea vegetables, and koji culture. Gluten-free and aged for a minimum of three weeks.
Taste: White miso has a rather sweet taste and has the smoothest or creamiest texture. With its sweet, gentle flavor and smooth, creamy texture, Sweet White Miso has a low salt content (4 %) and a very short fermentation time (three weeks). Sweet White is delicious in spreads, dips, sauces and salad dressings, or for seasoning light soups.
Sweet Tasting Brown Rice Miso
Ingredients: Deep well water, lightly polished organic brown rice, organic soybeans, sun-dried sea salt, organic sea vegetables, and koji culture. Gluten-free
Taste: Sweet, savory, and highly versatile, this caramel colored miso works well in light soups, salad dressings, and marinades.
Ingredients: Deep well water, lightly polished organic brown rice, organic chickpeas, sun-dried sea salt, organic sea vegetables, and koji culture. No gluten or soy ingredients.
Taste: Made with the sumptuous chick pea instead of soybeans, this variety has long been our family favorite. A staple of Middle Eastern cuisine since ancient times, the Chick Pea is one of the most easily digestible beans.
Azuki Bean Miso
Ingredients: Deep well water, lightly polished organic brown rice, organic azuki beans, sun-dried sea salt, organic sea vegetables and koji culture. No gluten or soy ingredients.
Taste: A South River exclusive! We believe this to be the only miso on earth made with the small red azuki beans, which are highly regarded for their nutritional and healing properties in Oriental medicine. Festive burgundy in color, this delicate miso is ideal for seasoning light soups, bean dishes, sauces, and salad dressings.
Golden Millet Miso
Ingredients: Deep well water, organic millet, organic soybeans, sun-dried sea salt, organic sea vegetables and koji culture. No gluten ingredients.
Taste: The tiny, high protein millet grain was considered one of the five sacred crops by the ancient Chinese, as far back as 4500 BC. This unique miso adds its sunny color and gentle sweetness to any dish.
South River offers many more flavors. If you interested in reading about them all, check out their site here.
Fit the food processor with a top slicing disc to shred the brussel sprouts. You can also do with the “S” blade and if you do, do this in several batches so you don’t over-shred the bottom sprouts. And if all else fails, you can use a sharp knife to slice them. Transfer to a large bowl.
Add the mushrooms, onion, lemon juice, agave, salt and pepper. With your hands mix everything together, gently messaging the lemon juice into the brussel sprouts, this will help the “break down” process which will cause the sprouts to wilt and become soft.
Cover and let rest overnight. You can speed this process up by spreading the mixture out on the teflex sheets that come with the dehydrator. Set it at 145 F degrees for one hour.
In the meantime, make the sauce. This will make extra sauce which you can use as a salad dressing or veggie dip.
After soaking the cashews, drain and rinse.
Add to the blender in the following order; water, miso, lemon juice, agave, vinegar, cashews, and spices. Blend on high till creamy. Stop occasionally to scrape down the side and text the mixture. If it is grainy, continue blending. This can take 1-4 minutes, depending on your machine.
Pour into a glass jar and seal. This will taste even better the next day as the ingredients meld together! This will last 5-7 days.
I recommend adding the sauce as you plate. Also, if you wish to eat this salad warm you can place it in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and dehydrate for several hours at 115 F.