Archives for category: Food processing

Today we made a new big batch of kimchi based on the age old sauerkraut method. It’s good and my customers really like it. 

We clean and shred savoy cabbages,

chop and dice garlic, sweet peppers and chili peppers,

shred ginger, carrots and radish,

pound the cabbage,

mix everything together and put it all into fermentation jars.

A package came today. 


2 packages of tane koji – one for rice koji and the other for barley koji. 


I ordered them about 2 weeks ago from:

Higuchi Matsunosuke Shoten Co., Ltd.

TEL:(81)06-6621-8781

FAX:(81)06-6621-2550

E-mail:koichi@higuchi-m.co.jp

URL:http://www.higuchi-m.co.jp/ 

It took a little longer this time, because I wasn’t familiar with japanese international banking practices. 2 years ago I ordered from Gem Cultures in the US and payed very easily using Paypal. Higuchi doesn’t have Paypal or such, so I had to figure out a new way. With banking information from Higuchi and help from my local bank it worked smoothly. 

Each of these packages is enough Aspergillus mold spores to enoculate 200 kilos of rice or barley, so it’s going to last me many years. This is the smallest amount they sell and probably too much for a home koji maker, but the price is very good, and the payment procedure is easy enough, so I can definitly recommend buying tane koji from them. They have a very good web site in english too. 

I should have been more observant earlier. I’m running out of kimchi for selling at the market. My kimchi has become a main sales item, as well as a favorite at home, so I’d better make lots more at a steady pace. After the market yesterday, I bought some ingredients and made a simple kimchi – chunky style. Start by chopping and mixing everything together. 


Stuff into fermentation jars and add a 3% salt brine. The hard part is waitng about 4 weeks for a good fermentation. 

This time the beans got cooked right. And the result was perfect – so far. One jar of 6 month rye miso and the other jar of 1 year rye miso. 


I had 600 grams of rye koji which I divided into 3 parcels of 200 grams each, 1 for later use to test rye amazake and 2 for quick miso. 

I had to recalculate my standard recepes for 6 month miso and 1 year miso with 200 grams koji as the fix figure. 

6 month miso:

  • 167 gr soybeans
  • 200 gr rye koji
  • 33 gr salt

1 year miso

  • 188 soybeans
  • 200 gr rye koji
  • 45 gr salt

Both fit nicely into 1 liter jars for fermentation. Now for the final ingredient – wait. 

The other day I boiled some soybeans for making 2 trial versions of rye miso that I can taste earlier. But I messed up and slightly toasted them in the end. Everything has to be perfect for this test, so I couldn’t use the beans. But they weren’t bad enough to throw away either. 


So, while a new batch of beans are cooking, I can use these to make some soy patties. 

Mix in onions


Herbs and salt


Oat meal and and whatever other stuff is desired


Mix and grind


Fry patties



Eat them


And finally, freeze in the leftovers. 

Now that I have some nice rye koji, I can do some experiments using it. First out is a 2 year rye miso using my standard recipe. 



2 years will be a long time to wait, so next week I will have to make some express miso, so that I can get a good taste of it sooner.

The second batch of rye koji is a great success too. 


That’s the last batch of koji for this year – 27 batches in all. Some have gone to making miso and amazake already, but there should be plenty left for more miso now and this fall, as well as for selling. And if I run out, I can always make more in december. 

Success!


Ready for drying;


I will make one more batch of rye koji then a batch or two of rye miso next week. I think I’ll try to make a batch of rye amezake too, to see what that tastes like.  

It looks good, smells good, feels good, tastes good and is growing well. 


It’s the morning of the second day and it’s already sporulating. I think it’s going to be a success. 

The normal koji making is done for this season. Now for an experiment. I’m sure someone, somewhere in the world has tried this before, but it’s going to be a first for me. Rye koji. I’ve always thought this would be difficult or impossible because of the hard shell around the kernal. 

The farmer where I get my barley for making barley koji from, makes pearled or slightly polished barley by husking the barley a little extra in a machine. Rye has no husk, but I had him put some of his ecologically grown rye through that machine. The result looked like this;

After cleaning and soaking;

After steaming;


Then after cooling, innoculating with barley koji starter and incubating, it will be interesting to see what happens. I suspect the rye has not been polished enough. We’ll see.