Archives for posts with tag: Miso

The last batch of koji for this year is put out to dry.

I’ve gone through about 15 kilos barley, 10 kilos rye, and 16 kilos of rice turning it into koji. Some has already been made into miso, some has been sold, a little more will be made into miso and the rest will be saved to sell or make into miso in the fall.

The koji making season is over for this year. Now it is time to start planting seeds.

Happy Easter

The last of the pumpkins are looking pretty bad these days.

But not bad enough that we can’t make a delicious pumpkin miso soup for Easter dinner.

A couple weeks ago I reported on a koji that turned ugly, but not not bad. It had a good smell and taste. So now I made a miso with it to test it’s enzyme power, using the standard recipe.

I cooked 1 kilo of soybeans (there’s about 2 kilos of cooking liquid too).

1 kilo of ugly rice koji thoroughly ground in.

Then 460 grams seasalt mixed in.

Then put into fermentation jars to watch for 2 years. So far it looks just like it should.

I’m done making barley and rye koji, as well as barley and rye miso for this season. There should be enough koji for sales and making miso in the fall.

But I still have to make about 10 kilos of rice koji, and the first batch is getting ready.

I’ve made a few varieties of koji this season using tane koji from different companies, and I wanted to test the effects on miso, so I cooked a kilo of soybeans last night. This morning I divided the beans into 2 portions.

I ground them and mixed in the koji and salt and put it into jars. You can already see the difference.

The one on the left is made with koji grown using starter (tane koji) from Gem Cultures. The one to the right using starter from Higuchi.

It seems I divided the beans poorly, which means the proportions are all off. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see how they develop over the next 2 years.

Doing some cleaning in the cellar yesterday, I found a lot of old starters I bought in the 80’s that I had forgotten about. Starters for natto, tempeh, shoyu and koji. There was an intact carton of starter for red barley miso koji.

The packages look good, whole and uncontaminated, so I’m going to try this variety out too, and if it is viable I’ll add it to my test.

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.