All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Ginnan to shungiku, kani no karashi sumiso-zoe / gingko nuts, garland chrysanthemum and crab with mustard vinegar miso sauce

Dishes with salty, sweet and sour sumiso sauce or its spicy karashi mustard variation were for sober grown-ups in my mind, and it took a long time before I found their charm. Both match very well with strong-tasting leafy greens, among which green onions and their relatives are the popular choices, as well as seafood, especially calamari (including hotaruika firefly squid) and shellfish. While both types are more common in spring, fall ingredients -- gingko nuts and shungiku below -- also pair well.

1/2 recipe:
60 calories; 7.1 g protein; 0.5 g fat; 6.6 g carbohydrate; 5.6 g net carbs; 143 mg sodium; 17 mg cholesterol; 0.6 g fiber

Karashi sumiso only (1/6 recipe):
13 calories; 0.4 g protein; 0.1 g fat; 2.5 g carbohydrate; 2.2 g net carbs; 58 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0.2 g fiber


12 ginnan gingko nuts (prepped)
Small handful (20-30 g) shungiku garland chrysanthemum (19 g in photo)
Small handful (60-70g) crabmeat (65g excluding shell in photo)
1/3 of karashi sumiso below

For karashi sumiso
(enough for 6 small servings)
1 tbsp Saikyo miso
2 1/2 tsp rice vinegar
2 tsp mirin
1/2 tsp erythritol (sugar substitute; see Notes)
2 tsp dashi
1 tsp karashi mustard powder


Make karashi sumiso.
In a microwaveable container, mix Saikyo miso, rice vinegar, mirin and erythritol, and microwave for 25-30 seconds while removing and mixing from time to time.

In another small container, mix karashi and dashi, and add to miso mixture.
Mix well, and microwave for anther 10 seconds.
Set aside.   


Blanch shungiku.
Put shungiku in boiling water stem end first, then leaf ends for even cooking.
When color brightens, immediately soak in ice water to cool, and drain. .

Squeeze out excess water, and cut into 3-4 cm


Put ginnan and crab on a tray, and briefly grill (until ginnan becomes somewhat translucent).


Plate ginnan, crab and shungiku (after squeezing out excess water once again).
Put karashi sumiso.
Ready to serve.

  • Grilling ginnan and crab is to intensify both ingredients' taste, but is optional. If not grilling, make sure ginnan is cooked.
  • Sweetness of erythritol (0 calories, 0 net carbs) is approx. 70% of granulated sugar. If using sugar, use less than the amount above.
  • Saikyo miso itself is sweet. If using other type of miso, you might want to add more sweeteners (mirin and erythritol above).
  • Karashi sumiso keeps 10+ days in the fridge.
  • Egg yolk is often added to sumiso and karashi sumiso for a richer note (especially common at restaurants).
  • Nutrition figures for whole recipe of karashi sumiso are: 78.0 calories; 2.5 g protein; 0.8 g fat; 15.0 g carbohydrate; 13.0 g net carbs; 348 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 1.0 g fiber.

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