The season of good hot soups is back. This one has a white secret ingredient.
Do you recognize this logo ? A white crane. Hakutsuru means white crane, it’s a brand of Japanese sake. Well, that’s a big commercial brand, I’m not promoting it. It’s because of this :
It is sake kasu.
The sakekasu means roughly “by-product” of sake. Japanese sake is obtained by letting rice fermenting in some water, and later the liquid is filtered. What is left is this paste. It is the season when it arrives on the market.
It’s a sort of white paste. I’ve some darker types. The taste…well. The closest would be goat cheese, but not the least salty. It’s very strong, but not often eaten pure. Mixed in water, it’s sweeter.
Here are the nutrition data. from this page (in Japanese)
For 100 g :
Carbohydrates 23.8 g
B1 0.03 mg
B2 0.26 mg 2 mg
niacin 2 mg
B6 0.94 mg
folic acid 170 µg
pantotene acid 0.48 mg
It is fermented, rich in fiber… and it is said to have the property of warming you up in Winter.
Some meals where I used sakekasu : click here
The 2 most classic usages are to make :
It’s a sweet hot drink.
The second is soup.
Basic sakekasu soup :
Eat some stock (fish dashi, kombu seaweed dashi, or simply water plus soy sauce…) and mix in a 1 tbs of sakekasu paste per cup. To mix it smoothly, you can take a small sieve, put the paste in, dip in the stock and stir with chopstick till it’s smooth. Or put the paste and a little liquid in a cup and stir, before pouring into the pot of soup.
Add any item you wish, veggies, fish, meat, croutons…
3 ingredients : natto fermented soy beans (it comes with a little bag of dashi + soy sauce), sakekasu and negi leeks.
Just boil water and mix. I use the natto sauce as stock.
I only add a little black pepper, freshly milled.
It’s really very tasty and warm. It’s incredible you can prepare it in 3 minutes.