I guess you could look at Trader Joe's White Miso Paste as a shelf-stable base for multiple bowls of plain miso soup, or you could think of it as a unique Japanese condiment to put on...whatever. The pouch suggests adding it "to sauces, dressings, soups, and marinades." Okay.
I thought it might add a bit of fanciness and flair to a cheap cup of ramen, so that's how I experimented with it first. A few globs of the stuff added a slightly richer, fermented flavor to the otherwise thin, watery ramen broth. It took my soup one tiny step in the direction of "authentic Japanese restaurant fare" from "poor college kid instant lunch."
We'll keep experimenting. Using it as a marinade on chicken or fish sounds fascinating to me, but I don't think I'll get around to that before I put up this blog post. Let us know if you've tried anything like that in the comments below.
$2.99 for the pouch. Imported from Japan. Refrigerate after opening. Don't think we'd purchase again, but hey, let the adventure continue...
Three stars a piece from Sonia and me for Trader Joe's White Miso Paste.
Bottom line: 6 out of 10.