Japan - Food and Wine July 2009
Awesome, hot, but not hot like you have had before.... Yuzu Kosho is a spicy, herby Japanese condiment that are thrilled to bring to you. It's great for adding a delicious dash of flavor to fish, vegetables, even a turkey sandwich.
You may already have seen it at your favorite sushi spot or noodle house. Occasionally tucked in with the soy sauce, oyster sauce and garlic-chile paste is a jar of a mysterious, pea-green-colored condiment. If you're an intrepid eater, you may already know this culinary charmer . . . but if you haven't yet, it's time you met Yuzu Kosho
What is Yuzu??
Yuzu kosho is a blend of the rind of yuzu (a citrus fruit
with notes of grapefruit, lemon and lime) and kosho (a spicy green chile
), mashed together with a good deal of salt: three powerful flavors colluding in a ravishing relish. A simple combination, but the flavor is so savory-sweet-pungent that you might be tempted to slather instead of dollop! Use a little restraint, though; the stuff packs some intense heat.
Suggestions for Use!
Originally a specialty of the Kyushu area - where it's often paired with yakitori
, a dish of skewered meat cooked over charcoal - yuzu kosho's popularity spread throughout Japan and is now making its way into the international culinary scene. Its versatility and persuasive flavors work well with so many dishes. Stir it into a bowl of udon noodles
and top with some cooling shiso
, a Japanese herb in the mint and basil family; toss it with sautéed eggplant, onions and tomatoes
mellowed with purple basil; use it in place or alongside your ginger and wasabi (preferably fresh wasabi!
with sushi. For an international take, try combining it with oil and marinating some flank steak for an out-of-sight fajita
filling; add it to a garlicky aioli for a twist; stir it in to a dried-fruit-and-nut-spiked pilau.
with Yuzu Kosho
Recipe: Aioli Spiked
with Yuzu Kosho
Using a light hand (or not!) Yuzu Koshu will bring some hot-tangy-sour shine to your plate.