Archives for posts with tag: Fermentation

We had a gang over to study kimchi making. The youthful enthusiasin turned it into a great party.

We made 2 kinds of kimchi – sauerkraut style and chunky style, and turned about 25 kilos of vegetables into many jars of kimchi.

Lots for everybody to take home.

Inspiring and tiring.

The first batch of barley koji made with the Gem Cultures starter.

Compare this with the barley koji made with Higuchi starter.

Not much difference, but here’s a close up of the first

And the latter

The Gem Culture starter produces a greener koji, and it has a stronger sporulation, which can produce quite a cloud when harvesting and using.

Be careful!

I’ve done 8 batches of barley koji so far this year. The last ones started to show signs of a little bacteria growth – wet spots in the wood of the growing trays and a slight change in the smell. So, I skip a batch and clean the trays. After a thourogh scrub and rinse (no detergent) I sometimes put them in the oven at 100 degrees C for an hour.

Then start a new batch.

I have made the first 8 batches with the yellow barley tane koji from Higuchi. Now I’ll make some with barley tane koji from Gem Cultures to see the difference. There should be a diff in sporulation and color.

Later I’ll make 2 parallell batches of barley miso with the 2 kinds of koji for comparison.

Actually it’s 100% miso, of course.

But I only had 800 grams rice koji left from last years production, so that’s 80% from my standard recipe for 2 year miso, which is:

  • 1 kilo soybeans
  • 1 kilo koji
  • 460 grams seasalt

So this time it was 800 grams each of beans and koji, 370 grams salt and put into a 4 liter jar.

Some good old fashioned 2 year barley miso. Ready for fermentation.

My favorite!

This batch is made with 1 kilo of new freshly grown and dried barley koji, along with 460 grams seasalt and 1 kilo of eco soybeans from China. I’m still looking for a new source of soybeans grown in Sweden.

The koji looks pretty good after 2 days of growing.

This year I’m using tane koji starter from Higuchi. It’s the one they call ‘barley yellow koji’. This one sporulates yellow while the one I used last year from Gem Cultures sporulates green and more profusely. That will probably make this years barley miso a lighter color and perhaps a slightly different flavor. It will be interesting to watch it develop over the next two years. But first I have to dry the koji for later use.

It was supposed to be rain, so instead of visiting Arashiyama we spent the day at Nishiki Market, a traditional in the main shopping district of Kyoto. 


Hundreds, maybe thousands of stalls selling traditional foods and stuff of old Japan. 

Here’s some pickled pumpkin


Or fresh wasabi


How about a snack of roasted mochi balls with miso or soysauce syrup



Matsutake mushrooms all the way from china


Pickled giant radish


Deep fried snacks


More pickles


Fresh pumpkins


Tofu and soy milk


And much much more.

The third fermentation festival took place on saturday as usual in Uddebo. It was the best one ever.


This year I did 2 demonstrations – kimchi and miso. I was so busy I forgot to take some good pictures, only a few lousy ones. 

Like this presentation of infamous fermentations. 

Or this of Edvard Rödseth talking about beer making. 


Luckily Emma Persson got some very good pictures of my demonstration on kimchi making. 

And miso making. 

The last day of the course came yesterday. The first session we sauerkraut, the second time we made pickled carrots and this time we made chunky style kimchi. 


After all the participants filled their jars, there was a lot left for me. 

Maybe we can have a follow up course and make some other fermented foods like miso.


No fun messing about in the garden today, so in keeping with this years early start at miso making, I’ll make some herb rice miso. 

With some foresight, I cooked a load of sojbeans last night. 

And with some garlic, basil, oregano, thyme and of course rice koji and salt. 


And 2 years fermentation.


The small amount on the right got a diced fresh cayenne pepper too.