A sweet, syrupy liquid, mirin is one of Japan's principal condiments. It has an alcohol content of about 13-14%, which is often burnt off during cooking.
As well as Hon mirin, cheaper mirin-style condiments with salt or other ingredients added are also available. These are often referred to as Shinmiriyo or Hon-Teri Mirin "like-real-mirin". They usually have less that 1% alcohol.
It adds a subtle sweetness and enhances the flavours of dishes. Mirin is often used in marinades, sauces, glazes, and soups. It can also be added to stir-fries, teriyaki dishes, and simmered preparations.
Mirin has a rich, sweet taste with a mild acidity. It offers a delicate balance of sweetness and umami, which helps to round out the flavours of a dish. The natural sweetness of mirin can complement savoury and salty ingredients - acts as a tenderiser, giving a subtle sweetness and glossy appearance to meats and vegetables