Miso-Glazed Tofu and Eggplant

Miso is one of my favorite flavors. Sure, fermented soy beans don’t sound like they’d be good, but who can resist a steaming bowl of miso soup or salad dressed with bright, flavorful miso dressing? Typically I use miso when cooking fish – there isn’t a sea creature out there that doesn’t benefit from a nice coating of miso – but this time I used it in a vegetarian preparation. I simply mixed it with a little sesame oil and mirin to thin it ever so slightly and slathered it on slices of tofu and eggplant before broiling it (this would be just wonderful on the grill too).

My husband reminded me that he’s not actually crazy about eggplant (how do I always forget that?) but then declared that he could eat this miso eggplant every day. And night. It was that good. The miso almost caramelizes under the heat, creating an umami-rich coating that is just packed with savory flavor. It is the embodiment of savory. Rice makes a nice accompaniment.

Miso paste has become more and more readily available. In the States I know for a fact they have it at Whole Foods and many health food stores. In Be’er Sheva I found it at Eden, but I believe I’ve seen it in other supermarkets. I used white miso (shiromiso), in which the soybeans are fermented with rice. The result is a super savory but slightly sweet paste that is great for salads and lighter dishes. Red miso (akamiso), in which the soybeans are fermented with barley, could work as well but be forewarned that the flavor is much more concentrated so try using less or thinning it down more. You don’t want it to overpower the eggplant. (For a great mini-lesson on differentiating different types of miso look here.)

Miso-Grilled Tofu and Eggplant

Yield: 4 Servings

INGREDIENTS:
¼ cup white miso paste
1 tablespoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons Mirin
14-16 ounces extra firm tofu (1 package), sliced lengthwise into rectangles
½ large eggplant, sliced into rounds

METHOD:
Preheat the broiler. In a bowl stir together the miso paste, sesame oil, and Mirin. Pat the tofu dry between paper towels. Brush the tofu and eggplant slices with the miso marinade on both sides until fully coated and transfer to a foil-lined baking sheet. Put the tofu and eggplant in the broiler and cook until the miso has caramelized slightly, flipping once. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.


20 Comments

  1. Wow, this looks incredible! Tofu and eggplant are two of my favorite foods. I’ll have to try this out soon!

  2. Oh I love tofu, and this looks delicious! Thanks for the recipe :)

  3. I also love miso and keep it on hand in the fridge all the time. It’s so versatile and just adds a complex savory quality to anything and everything.

  4. The eggplant sounds incredible. I like them grilled too. Thanks for sharing & hope you’re having a great week ahead.
    Blessings, Kristy

    • Thanks Kristy! I wish I had a grill, or any outdoor space, but I really do think these would be amazing grilled! I hope you have a great week as well, thanks for stopping by :-)

  5. Miso + Mirin is the great combination – sweet and salty flavor. I usually add soy sauce to this, but I should try adding sesame oil, which gives nice additional layer umami. And Katherine, you are a great photographer. It’s so hard to take such a brown dish, and you did it so nicely! I already love this dish, even without trying it yet!

    • Ooh soy sauce would be good too! I didn’t want to overpower the flavors too much and the sesame oil was flavorful but delicate. I love to play around with all of these flavors! And thank you so much for your kind words, Nami! You make me blush.

  6. I had something similar to this at an itzakaya restaurant a couple of weeks ago, it was incredible!

  7. This is really great combination of ingr. very flavorful and tasty looking! I adore your pictures, so real looking, I just want to reach and grab that plate:))

  8. This sound delicious! I love miso and will definitely be giving this a try.

  9. Do you have a sense of how long the dish is in the broiler before the miso “caramelizes slightly”? I am super new to cooking, are we talking like 5 minutes? more? less?

    • Great question – it depends on the broiler, but it should only take a few minutes per side. Keep an eye on them.

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