Active Time
25 MIN
Total Time
1 HR 25 MIN
Serves : Makes about 4 cups

A gentle steep is the best way to coax the sweet umami–without any bitter notes–from the kombu and shiitakes in this all-purpose dashi.

How to Make It

Step 1    

Combine 6 cups water, shiitakes, and kombu in a 3-quart classic-style donabe. Let stand for 30 minutes.

Step 2    

Heat mixture, uncovered, over medium-low until steaming but not simmering (about 140°F), about 10 minutes. Cook 15 minutes, adjusting heat as needed to prevent simmering. Using a slotted spoon or spider, remove and discard kombu.

Step 3    

Stir in dried smoked bonito flakes, if using, and continue cooking over medium-low until flavors are infused, dashi has a light smoky flavor, and liquid has reduced to about 4 cups, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat; pour through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a bowl, reserving shiitakes for quick-pickled shiitakes.

Make Ahead

Dashi can be kept in an airtight container in refrigerator up to 3 days.

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