An all purpose soup stock usually made from kombu and shiitake mushroom. Dashi literally means 'boiled extract', it is added to almost everything from soups, sauces, broths, dressings.
Most often in Japan dried fish flakes are added to make dashi, but the Zen monks, based in Kyoto area from the 14th to the 16th century and observing a strict vegetarian diet, developed a recipe using exclusively sea and earth vegetables.
To prepare a basic dashi, soak two 15cm pieces of Clearspring Kombu and three dried shiitake or maitake mushrooms in about 2 litres of water for at least 15 minutes. Remove the mushrooms, and thinly slice the caps. Then return them to the water, bring it to the boil and simmer gently for 10 minutes. Remove the kombu and keep it to use for cooking as a condiment or with beans.