There are two traditional soups in Japan, misoshiru, and sumashijiru, a
soy sauce-seasoned clear soup. At many Japanese restaurants, misoshiru
is often served for breakfast, and sumashijiru for dinner.
What is misoshiru?
It is a miso-seasoned thick soup, s considered a fundamental part of Japanese home cuisine. Miso soup is made by cooking ingredients such as negi (green onion), tofu (soybean curd), wakame seaweed vegetables, in a fish broth made from katsuobishi (dried bonito flakes) and then mixing miso (fermented soybean paste) into the broth.
History of miso soup
Miso was imported into Japan from China in the Asuka era (from the end
of the 6th century to the 7th century). At that time, people ate miso in its pure state because they
could not dissolve it in water.In the Kamakura era (from the end of the
12th century to the mid-14th
century), a common Japanese meal called ichiju-issai (a bowl of boiled rice
with a meat or fish dish and soup) was established among the samurai class.
Samurai ate miso soup for every meal.
From the end of Muromachi era
through Sengoku era (the 16th century), which was the age of wars,
warriors ate miso soup in the battle fields. They used the stems of taro which were
stewed in miso as ropes in the battle fields. When food ran out, they chopped
up the taro stems and put them into a bowl and poured hot water onto them. This
was probably the first instant miso soup in history!
In the Edo era (from the 17th century to the mid-19th century), both
the samurai class and common people ate miso soup. Since then, miso soup has
become a fundamental part of Japanese home cuisine.
Health effects of miso soup
●It helps lower cholesterol
The main ingredient of miso is soybean.
According to medical reports, saponin, an ingredient found in soybeans, acts to
lower lymph cholesterol value, which helps to prevent stroke, heart attack and thrombosis.
helps to prevent cancer
According to medical reports, the death rate by stomach cancer of people who often eat miso soup is lower than that of people who seldom eat miso soup. According to one medical report, women consuming a lot of soybean products have a lower incidence of breast cancer in comparison with women who consume very few soybean products
helps to prevent aging
Miso helps to prevent the
oxidation of human internal lipids. Increased oxidation results in the aging of
the blood vessels and cells.
helps to prevent osteoporosis
It is necessary to consume a lot of calcium
in order to prevent osteoporosis. Miso soup is a perfect source of calcium as it
is found in both the miso and the fish broth.