Sunday, April 5, 2009

I made miso today!

This year our family has joined a lecture series, mainly about farming (or growing plants. I'm not entirely sure what it's about, my husband does, though.) Today there were having a 'class' on making miso paste, and Yoshi was interested in it. However, somehow his parents were invited over today, so we couldn't all go. I was volunteered, but I was actually interested in learning how to make miso.

It turns out it's not really complicated, but it is a lot of work, and it takes a long time for the miso to mature. First you need to prepare the beans. If you're using dry beans, this means letting them soak. For today's class, a lot of preparation had been done for us. I also have to admit now, that I was thirty minutes late for the class! Oops! So, I missed the first part of the lecture. When I got there (with my jar for storing my portion of miso), I was able to just jump right in, starting with smashing cooked beans. After measuring, the smashed beans were added to (pre-measured) rice and salt, with about a cup of liquid from the boiled beans. This was mixed by hand until it could be pressed into balls. The balls were then pressed into the jar, with some konbu layered in the middle. This was measured perfectly because it just fit in the jar. Next some plastic was placed on top, then salt poured on top of that. Then it was ready to wait. It's going to take about six months for the miso to be ready!

I forgot to bring my camera with me today, so these pictures were taken with my cell phone.

boiling soy beans

Boiling beans. Part of the preparation included boiling beans, then putting them in a pressure cooker to speed up the process. This was a large pot of beans waiting to be put in a pressure cooker.

cooked soy beans

Here are cooked beans in a sieve. Notice the bowl underneath to catch the liquid.

smashing cooked soy beans

This was a large blender which did a pretty good job at mashing those beans! We had to scrape the beans down to get them all blended.


This was a little hot to mix!


shape into balls

I think that the balls were supposed to make it easier to fit in the jars.

miso balls

press mixture into the pot

We used our fists to press the mixture down. I actually used my weight to press it down. haha

That's pretty much it for the pictures I took. I had some fun today, I hope the miso turns out well!


thefukases said...

Go Illahee!

I made miso for the first time this year and it's amazing. So much tastier than the shop stuff. Well, that might be because I only ever buy the cheap stuff but still...

Your lecture series sounds really interesting.

bamboo said...

That's pretty cool. I'll have to try that sometime.


Amy said...

That looks so fun! I'd love to try it myself, but I doubt there are classes like that in Tokyo and I'm sure I would muck it up if I tried it at home...

illahee said...

they did give us a recipe, maybe to try at home next year? it was pretty simple, although smashing the beans with a kitchen food processor would probably take a looooong time!

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