Last week was a wipe out because I was in Denver to tape an online class for Craftsy. (More on that very cool new project in the weeks to come!) I was somewhat brain dead from the long work days so I didn’t tune into some of the comments on the teriyaki chicken recipe until today. There were several points made about mirin, how the typical stuff sold at many markets is basically fructose, glucose and a little alcohol. It’s also expensive, given the amount of mirin that many Japanese recipes call for. “Can you make your own mirin?” Gina asked.
While I’ve had to come up with mirin substitutes in a pinch, I’d never thought of making my own. Mirin seemed like such a mystery, kind of sacred. Gina put me to the task so I looked at the glossary of several Japanese cookbooks and the best source of information came from Hiroko Shimbo’s The Japanese Kitchen. Hiroko gave the best low down on mirin and as usual, her insights were illuminating: