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F&W Chef-in-Residence David Chang has reinvented miso. Hozon, which means “preserve” in Korean, is a fermented paste created by Chang’s Kaizen Trading Company. While miso is made with soybeans, hozon is made with chickpeas, lentils or sunflower seeds. It’s funky, creamy, even more umami-packed than miso and, as the video above (narrated by Chang himself) illustrates, it’s almost endlessly useful. A perfect base for sauces, marinades, dips, soups and spreads, it turns out that hozon could also revolutionize your lunchtime salad.
For all of June, the New York City locations of Sweetgreen are offering the June Hozon Salad: kale, arugula, roast chicken, onions, carrots, cucumbers, seeds, basil, sunflower sprouts and a dressing made with sunflower seed hozon, rice wine vinegar, ginger, olive oil and soy sauce. Sweetgreen’s cofounder Nicolas Jammet says that the idea came from the company’s fascination with fermentation (they previously offered a kimchi-based salad in January). Jammet describes hozon’s flavor as rich, intense and nutty; the salad is balanced by the carrot and onion’s sweetness and bite.
Right now, hozon, sadly, isn’t available for sale online or in stores—only in restaurant dishes such as Sweetgreen’s special. Just think of it as an incentive to go get a salad.