Mirin, a Japanese cooking wine, is normally used in stir-fries, sauces, and marinades. But it can also be used in creative ways to flavor and enhance a wide range of dishes and foods.
The versatile ingredient can be used in many ways you might not have thought of. The sweet wine is high in sugar and can be used to tenderize and make delicious glazes for chicken, fish, and beef. It’s also a main ingredient in Teriyaki Sauce, which adds umami to many Japanese soups.
Mirin could soon be a staple in your kitchen pantry. You can learn more about its common uses, but there are many other creative ways to use mirin in the kitchen to enhance the flavor and texture of many foods.
1. Steam Foods With Mirin
Shellfish, like crab and shrimp, along with other fish, can be steamed with water and sometimes with white cooking wine. Instead of steaming your favorite foods with just that, why not use mirin? For a subtle sweetness, add some mirin to fish stock. Or, you can complement it with other ingredients like lime, ginger, or soy sauce.
You can also steam vegetables with mirin. After the food has been cooked, you can boil the steaming liquid until it becomes a flavorful sauce. Using a bamboo steamer to cook the food will elevate the dish.
2. Make Japanese Fusion Meatballs With Mirin
Combine 1/2 cup of mirin, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, minced garlic, and some dried ginger. It will make meatballs a lot easier if you mix it well and thoroughly. For a fun Japanese fusion take on spaghetti and meatballs, try the meatballs with soba pasta.
3. Create Umami With a New Dipping Sauce for Sushi
You can make your sushi dipping sauces more than just soy sauce or ponzu sauce if you can be creative with mirin. You need to mix mirin with soy sauce, ginger, wasabi, sesame oil, chili pepper flakes and basically whatever you can think of that might work well together. You don’t have to be afraid of trying new things, like mirin and cinnamon. You’ll be able to make some amazing mirin sauce combinations by playing with your pantry items.
4. Grill Fish With Mirin Boshi
Grilled mackerel is a Japanese favorite fish dish. It’s served with a traditional marinade called mirin boshi. It’s made with mirin, ginger, sesame seeds, soy sauce, and salt. But it is equally delicious on any kind of grilled fish, giving it a subtle sweetness without overpowering the fish.
5. Top Your Steaks With Sake-Mirin Butter
Garlic butter is often used to top tenderloins and other prime cuts. This unbelievably delicious sake-mirin butter glistening on the surface of a steak tastes even better. Make the butter by sauteing minced garlic in 1 teaspoon of olive oil over low heat. Then, add 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter. After the butter has melted, add 2 tablespoons of sake and 1 tablespoon of mirin. Mix together, and season the mixture with salt and pepper. Drizzle over your steaks!