Dashi is a unique broth made from bonito flakes and kombu. It is a key ingredient in Japanese cooking.
- 9 cups cold water
- 2-4 cups of bonito flakes (add more bonito to strengthen flavor)
- 1 4-inch by 4-inch piece of dried kombu
- 3 dried shiitake mushrooms (optional-see note)
- Place dried kombu and dried shiitake mushrooms (optional) in a saucepan with cold water and turn to high heat. Immediately before the water comes to a boil, remove the kombu and set it aside for second dashi.
- Stir in the bonito flakes and bring the water to a boil. As soon as the water boils turn the heat off and let it sit for 2 minutes.
- Strain broth through a fine mesh strainer (or cheesecloth for extra clarity) and set aside to cool. Save the bonito and shiitake for second dashi.
- While first dashi is cooling, add the used kombu, bonito, shiitake (if using) and 4 ½ cups of water to the saucepan.
- Bring the water to a boil then drop the heat to low and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
- Strain the broth again and discard the kombu and bonito. Save shiitake in refrigerator for other meals. Ta-Da! That’s all there is to it.
- Dried kombu is difficult to measure because it is rolled up. I generally use my pointer finger to roughly measure a piece.
I often add dried shiitake mushrooms to my both because I love their extra pop of flavor. I usually use shiitake when I know the dashi will be used in a dish with shiitake mushrooms as an ingredient