Master Japanese chefs shared amazing techniques, recipes, ingredients, know-how, theory and more during the two and half days of the CIA's Japan: Flavors of Culture. Here is a trio of methods I came across that I loved, and jotted down in my notebook:
From a presentation by Chef Hiro Sone of the Napa Valley's Terra restaurant, onsen tamago with somen and diced raw tuna (onsen tamago, are slow-soft boiled eggs, like they do at onsen, or natural hot springs): Simmer eggs in 63.5 degree Celsius water for 45 minutes, cool in an ice bath (or cold running water), peel and set aside. Make a seasoned dashi by combining 4 parts dashi with 1 part soy sauce and 1 part mirin, bring to a boil, boil for 1 minute, add a pinch of salt, and allow the dashi to cool to room temperature. Dice sushi-grade raw tuna (use Ahi not blue fin, please!), thin slice negi or scallion, and thin slice shiso leaves. Cook dried somen in a large pot of unsalted boiling water, for about 2 minutes or until al dente, rinse the noodles under cold water. Assemble the dish by piling somen on a shallow bowl, topping with an egg, topping with tuna, negi and shiso, and finishing by drizzling the dashi over the composition. I tasted this dish, absolutely fantastic.
From a presentation by Chef Hisato Nakahigashi of the Michelin two-star Miyamaso, outside of Kyoto, salmon marinated in miso yuan and grilled or broiled on cedar: Mix together 300 g saikyo miso, 300 cc sake, 140 cc mirin, and 100 cc soy sauce, and use it to coat 350 grams of salmon fillet. Let the fish marinate 24 hours. Wipe off the marinade and grill or broil on a cedar plank or between cedar sheets.
From a speech by Ruth Reichl, talking about an irresistible, lightning-fast, Japanese-inspired sauce that Chef Jean-Georges loves: mix together 1 part butter, 1 part soy sauce and add a squeeze or two of lime. Use this sauce on EVERYTHING.