Recipe: Soba-tsuyu (dipping sauce for cold soba noodles)

Soba-tsuyu (dipping sauce for cold soba noodles) Total time: 25 minutes, plus cooling time Servings: This makes about 6 1/2 cups of dipping sauce. Note: Adapted from Akila Inouye. Mirin (look for mirin made with just rice, rice spirit and malt) and dried bonito flakes are available at Asian markets. Hongaeshi (dipping sauce base) 1/3 cup sugar 1/4 cup plus a scant 3 tablespoons mirin 2 cups plus a scant 2 tablespoons soy sauce Place the sugar and mirin into a pot over medium heat and dissolve the sugar completely. Add the soy sauce and heat until a thermometer inserted reaches 158 degrees, then remove from heat. Cover the pot with a clean cloth (instead of a hard lid). Set aside and cool to room temperature. Store the liquid, covered, in the refrigerator. You can keep the base for a couple of months. This makes about 2 1/2 cups of hongaeshi. Soba-tsuyu 2 1/2 cups water 4 loosely packed cups (35 grams) dried bonito flakes 3/4 cup hongaeshi dipping sauce base Dash of mirin (optional) Dash of sake (optional) 1. Boil the water and add the dried bonito flakes. Lower the heat to a simmer and continue cooking for a minute. Strain the dashi liquid in a fine strainer. 2. Add the hongaeshi to the dashi and then heat it to 158 degrees. Add a dash of mirin and sake, if using. Cool the pot in an ice bath. This will keep in the refrigerator for 3 days. Serve on the side with soba. Each one-half cup: 18 calories; 1 gram protein; 3 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 0 fat; 0 cholesterol; 2 grams sugar; 704 mg. sodium.

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