Dashi (Japanese soup stock) as a drink.

No, I’m not kidding.

Dashi – soup stock or broth – is an integral part of traditional Japanese cuisine. Most of them are seafood based, such as dried fish or see weed, and some are from dried shiitake mushroom or vegetables. It often defines the base flavor of Japanese soup dish such as ramen, udon, miso soup or nabe (hot pot). 

As you can imagine, you can produce very small amount of dashi from a given ingredient, especially high quality one, because raw ingredients first need to be selected for quality – best if naturally grown – and then dried before processed. In an essence, dashi is an extract of natural blessings. Some are packaged after powdered for an easy use. Naturally, dashi can be expensive. Japanese company Kuze Fuku & Sons offers high quality dashi, and its quality is so good that some are sold as “drink.” Just like tea or coffee, drip dashi and enjoy the earthy flavor, says Kuze Fuku. 

A package of powdered dashi comes with a drip, so you set it on your cup and pour hot water over it. And voila! Here’s dashi tea. I need to tell you, this is the Zen of drink. There is nothing like super sweet, salty or spicy, the flavors we are so used to these days. Instead you focus on your taste buds and try to enjoy the combination of every subtle aroma and flavors. I especially enjoyed the aftertaste, which was relaxing.