Mirin-sweet rice wineMirin (get it?), Japanese sweet cooking wine, dates back more than 400 years.
Made by combining and fermenting steamed mochigome (a glutinous rice), komekoji (rice yeast), and shochu (Japanese liquor), mirin is clear and light gold in color, and a bit syrupy.
Mirin comes in two types: hon mirin and shin mirin.
Hon mirin, which is naturally brewed, contains nearly 14% alcohol. It's often used as a ceremonial drink, especially during the period around the New Year.
Shin mirin has less than 1% alcohol but has the same flavor as hon mirin, so it's commonly used for cooking, and it's the type most of us have in our pantries.
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