Seaweed and Dried Fish Broth
1 1⁄2 oz. kombu
1 3⁄4 oz. katsuobushi
(dried shaved bonito flakes)
1⁄3 cup light soy sauce
2 tsp. sugar
1. Put kombu into a 4-qt. saucepan and cover with 6 cups cold water; let soak for 30 minutes. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; skim off foam from surface. Remove from heat; remove and discard kombu.
2. Add katsuobushi to pot; let steep until saturated, about 1 minute. Strain liquid through a sieve into a bowl set inside another bowl filled with ice water; discard katsuobushi.
2. Stir broth until chilled. Whisk in soy sauce and sugar until dissolved.
Marinating the Vegetables: Briefly boil or deep-fry 1 cup cauliflower florets, 1⁄2 cup trimmed sugar snaps, 3 small peeled plum tomatoes, 1 Japanese eggplant cut diagonally into 2-inch sections, and 6 small new potatoes, halved, until vegetables are crisp-tender. Marinate vegetables in broth for at least 30 minutes (or, refrigerated, for up to 3 days). Spoon a few tablespoons of the broth over the vegetables and serve.
MAKES 4 CUPS