Bonito Flake (2)
Ichiban (1st) Dashi - (15 min)
Niban (2nd) Dashi - (30 min)
- Place KELP and Cold Water in a saucepan, and heat
over very moderate flame so the Kelp has some soak time. Pull the
kelp just as the water comes to a boil. Reserve for Niban Dashi.
- Allow Water to come to a full boil, then add 1/2 cup
Cold Water and immediately stir in Bonito Flake. Let
the water return to a boil but only for 2 to 3 seconds. Take off
- Strain through muslin or similar, wringing liquid through and
reserving Bonito Flakes with the reserved Kelp.
- The Dashi should be used right away, before it loses aroma and
subtle notes of flavor
Hon Dashi - (5 min)
- Place reserved Bonito and Kelp in a saucepan with 6 cups
of cold water. Bring just to a boil, then turn down to a simmer, and
simmer uncovered about 20 minutes.
- Stir in 1/2 oz fresh Bonito Flakes. Take off the heat
and let stand about 1 minute.
- Strain through muslin or similar, wringing liquid through.
- Bring Cold Water to a boil. Take off the heat. Stir in
Hon Dashi granules - Done.
- Kelp: [Konbu, Kombu (Japan); Miyeok,
Dashima (Korea); Haidai (China); Laminaria japonica]
This wide, flat dried seaweed can be found in any market serving a
Japanese or Korean community, and in most markets serving other East
and Southeast Asian communities. For details see our
- Bonito Flake: This is bonito fillets
that have been smoked, carefully fermented and then dried.
These fillets are hard as a board, a hardwood board, and need special
tools to flake. In North America it is available pre-flaked in
markets serving a Japanese or Korean community. Flavor fades with
time, so don't store it too long. For details see our
Seafood Products page.
- Hon Dashi: [True Dashi] This is
a higher grade of Dashi-no-moto (granulated instant dashi stock)
indicating it is actually made using real Kelp and Bonito, rather than
cleverly faked. It may still be laced with MSG and salt.
- Comments: OK, lets be brutally honest
here. If you are serving a clear soup to a Samurai, who happens also to
be an epicure, and he's carrying a lot of razor sharp cutlery, and you
can get his soup on the table the moment the dashi is done (and you'd
better be able to), then you want to make the Ichiban Dashi. Other
than that, you may want to go with the Hon Dashi version (yes it is
noticeably less delicate, but for Western tastes, you may even prefer
it). You'll also save money - Kelp and Bonito Flake are expensive in
retail packaging. The Niban Dashi is really pretty rank, tasting mostly of
- U.S. measure: t=teaspoon,
T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce,
#=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required