Oba Miso: Tasty Versatile Shiso Miso Seasoning
Oba (大葉) or Ooba, also known as Aojiso (青紫蘇), is the edible green leaf of Shiso or perilla. The leaves are large with serrated edges and commonly used in Japanese cooking throughout the year.
Oba is a herby, nutritious leaf, especially rich in beta carotene, B vitamins, vitamins E and K, and calcium. The green leaf features its pleasant aroma and often comes with sashimi.
Oba Miso (大葉味噌)
Because of its good scent, Oba can serve as a flavoring. We typically chop it up and mix it into something, such as dressing, sauce, beverages, or miso.
And what I introduce here, Oba Miso, also called Shiso Miso, is a quintessential example of using miso.
In Japan, it is not only available in jars in many supermarkets, but Japanese home cooks sometimes make it from scratch.
Oba Miso is a fragrant, sweet, savory seasoning (condiment) made from chopped Oba leaves mixed with miso, mirin, sugar, and sake and matches well with foods such as rice, bread, meat, fish, or tofu.
Specifically, you first put miso, mirin, sugar, and sake into a frying pan and bring the mixture to a simmer. Then add chopped Oba leaves and cook until they become soft and shiny.
For your reference, this popular recipe on cookpad.com uses a 1:1:2:1:1 ratio of sesame oil, miso, mirin, sugar, and sake.
We often eat Oba Miso with a warm bowl of white rice and use it in Onigiri rice balls.
The fragrant sweet-savory miso can be a nibble or Otsumami for alcoholic drinks and serves as a dip for fresh vegetable sticks. Also, it can be a marinade for fish and meat.