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Miso Walleye

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Walleye marinated in miso served over noodles and king oyster mushrooms.

Recipe and Photo by Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley

If you’ve been to a sushi restaurant, then you’re likely familiar with miso soup. Miso is a Japanese seasoning made of fermented soybeans, salt and the fungus koji. Find it in the refrigerated section, sold as a thick, yellow-brownish paste stored in small tubs. Although miso’s main flavor is salty, it also can be nutty, earthy, savory and slightly sweet. And its uses far exceed just soup.

White miso enhances flavor wherever it’s added and is not overpowering. For this recipe, I used the seasoning to marinate walleye, which transforms this mild fish into something that is delicious with plain, hot white rice. Or, as pictured, you can serve your miso walleye over soba noodles lightly seasoned with mentsuyu (Japanese noodle soup base) and seared king oyster mushrooms.

This marinade also works with red meats, such as venison. Wondering what to do with the rest of that miso? Stir a little bit in the mayonnaise or mustard you might eat in your sandwiches. Make a glaze for roasted or grilled vegetables. Or, add a little bit into soups and stews — Eastern or Western recipes.
If you can’t find mirin, which is sweet Japanese rice wine, you can substitute with dry sherry or sweet marsala wine.

Servings: 4
Prep Time: Overnight
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Ingredients:
• 4 walleye fillets
• ¼ cup white miso paste
• ¼ cup mirin
• ¼ cup sake
• 4 tsp. sugar
• 4 tsp. soy sauce
• 4 servings of prepared white rice
• 4 green onions, sliced on the bias

Directions:

1. In a small bowl, stir miso paste, mirin, sake, sugar and soy sauce until smooth. Place walleye fillets in a zip-lock bag and pour in miso marinade. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, flipping the bag halfway through.
If serving with plain white rice, I recommend marinating the fish overnight.

2. When ready to cook, preheat oven to broil and place the rack in the middle position. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and grease with cooking spray. Allow excess marinade to drip off fish before laying them onto the baking sheet. Broil for 5-10 minutes, or until fish is cooked through and flaky. You may also grill or sear the fish in a non-stick pan. Serve with hot white rice and sliced green onion or soba noodles and mushrooms, as pictured.

About Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley

NEBRASKAland Associate Editor Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley was born in Nha Trang, Vietnam, and moved to the United States with her parents in 1992. She graduated from Bolsa Grande High School in Garden Grove, California, in 2008 and completed her bachelor’s degree at UCLA in 2012. Wheatley was editor-in-chief for her high school newspaper and continued to write in college, freelancing for various publications, the Tiger Woods Foundation and writing for her blog FoodForHunters.com. After graduating college, she moved to Nebraska in early 2013 to join the Commission as Regional Editor at NEBRASKAland Magazine. She then became associate editor in 2015. Wheatley enjoys hiking, camping, horseback riding, hunting, fishing and wild game cooking.