A fermented paste made from soybeans salt koji ( a grain catalyst in the fermentation process) and rice (sometimes other grains are used). A traditional Japanese food miso is currently used by many healthconscious Americans in soups dressings and sauces. It is reputed to counteract the effects of radiation air pollution smoking and other carcinogens. Buy the unpasteurized naturally fermented misos available in the refrigerated section of health food stores.