Nasu-Miso (Fried Eggplant with Miso Sauce)

Like many people, I’m a big fan of Japanese food. I consider Japanese cuisine to be in a class of its own, with its emphasis on unique, fresh flavours and aesthetic presentation.

That said, I also find Japanese cooking to be very challenging. What looks to be a simple dish often involves plenty of preparatory work, skill and zen-like focus throughout. If you take shortcuts or cut corners, chances are you won’t get a fully authentic result.

Hence, for a long time I was too intimidated to attempt cooking Japanese food at home. Then I came across Emi Kazuko’s excellent cookbook Japanese Cooking. This book is well written, with detailed descriptions of various Japanese ingredients. The recipes vary in difficulty, but overall they’re easy enough for most cooks to follow.

This recipe for Nasu-miso or fried eggplant in miso sauce, has become one of my favourites. It’s simple and easy to prepare, and the taste is simply extraordinary. The soft, chewy texture of the eggplant is complemented with the unique taste of miso and a rich sauce made from Japanese condiments.
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