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Okazaki, Aichi, Japan

Mikawa Soybean Hatcho Miso



Mikawa soybean Hatcho miso is made from local Mikawa soybeans with traditional production methods, naturally brewed and aged over 2 summers 2 winters for more than 24 months.








Mikawa soybean Hatcho miso 400g



Mikawa soybean Hatcho miso is made from local Mikawa soybeans with traditional production methods, naturally brewed and aged over two summers and two winters for more than 24 months.

It has a rich soybean taste and is full of nutrients.

Enjoy the traditional taste.

* A small amount of barley flour is used to grow koji.



What is "HATCHO MISO" ?

Known for its distinctive acidic, astringent and bitter flavor, the name 'Hatchō Miso' is originally derived from the geographical name of 'Hatchō' where the miso used to be produced, and as a result, came to be known by this name.
Produced using a long-established process of manufacture, Hatchō Miso comprises just approximately 0.2% of the total volume of miso produced in Japan.



When one enters the Kakukyu storehouse one will find rows of traditional large wooden casks, which are used to prepare miso. One by one, craftsmen place by hand large quantities of stone on top of the wooden casks so that they act as weights. In the past these stones have never collapsed, even in the event of large earthquakes. Under the weight and pressure of 3 tons of river rocks, 6 tons of Hatchō miso is left to slowly mature throughout the hot, humid summers and relatively mild winters of Hatchōchō.


Production Method

Firstly, our carefully-selected soybeans are immersed in water and are left to soak up moisture in moderate amounts depending on the temperature, humidity and actual state of the basic ingredients. This process is one of the crucial elements in producing miso and significantly influences the quality of the final product. Following this, the soybeans are steamed with hot vapor, then koji mold [Aspergillusoryzae] (a type of microorganism used for fermenting cereal grain) is added to the surface of the beans, and the soybeans are left to ferment. Next, dietary salt and water are added to the fermented soybeans and thoroughly blended together, after which the mixture is laid into a wooden cask large enough to hold 6 tons of miso. It is within the climate and natural features of Hatchōchō district (formerly known as Hatchōmura) in Okazaki City that the miso is slowly matured over a period spanning more than two years.



Protein within the miso break down whilst inside the wooden casks, enabling it to transform into miso. Then, as the miso continues to ferment, amino acid starts to crystallize and white grains known as 'millet grains' (so named due to their resemblance to millets) start beginning to appear. When the millet grains start to surface, it is a sign that the miso has matured, and this can be likened to the crystallization of amino acids in cheese that has been matured over long periods. Throughout this lengthy period of maturing, the salt harmonizes with the miso, giving it a mellow saltiness. 



During the production of Hatchō Miso, the microbial communities already living inside the factories begin to operate and exert their influence on the miso's flavor.We pay meticulous care not to destroy this microbial environment and continue to produce Hatchō Miso, not only in the same place where it has been made since the time of the company's founding, but by sticking to our traditional manufacturing process.


COOKING WITH HATCHO MISO

Since its introduction to the West as a simple and medicinal soup base, miso has blossomed into an essential ingredient in the new natural cuisine. Hatcho miso can be used to enhance everything from basic macrobiotic dishes to gourmet fare.
For the busy cook who wants to add flavor and concentrated nutrition to standard American dishes such as casseroles, gravies, chili, baked beans and stews, simply substitute Hatcho miso for salt (use approximately 2 tablespoons miso for 1 teaspoon salt).



For those moving toward a more wholesome, natural way of eating, the hearty, meat-like quality of Hatcho miso can help ease that transition.For example, try substituting vegetable stock seasoned with Hatcho miso in recipes calling for beef stock. For the experienced natural foods cook, Japanese cook or gourmet cook, miso's possibilities are truly endless. Hatcho miso's savory, robust flavor combines well with beans, gravies, baked and simmered dishes, and vegetable soups and stews. When making miso soup, combine I part Hatcho miso with 2-3 parts red miso or light, sweet miso for an especially satisfying balanced taste.

by Kakukyu
Kenji Nomura
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