Shio Koji / 塩麹

A Key Flavor Enhancer
Umami Revisited

Mask for Japanese Noh theaterIn recent years Japanese cooks have become more interested in exploring uses for a culinary staple called Shio Koji. The name comes from Shio, or Salt, and Koji, or the special Rice Mold used to make Miso and Sake. The Salt and the fermented Rice are mixed in a combination that is brownish and coarse-textured and resembles Porridge.

The flavor is salty, intense and complex and Shio Koji enhances the umami, one of the basic flavor elements in mst foods.

Shio Koji is often used in stead f Soy Sauce to marinate meats for roasting, including Chicken and Fish, as well as a variety of other meas. A tiny bit whipped into Vinaigrette dressing helps balance acidity.  Shio Koji can even be whisked into Scrambled Eggs with good results.

Shio Koji is sold in small tubs in Japanese or other Asian markets, such as H Mart and Mitsuwa..

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