[permaculture] QRY: Production of Miso paste
pat at meadows.pair.com
Mon Nov 9 15:41:04 EST 2009
(I didn't receive the query for some reason, or overlooked it. )
Yes indeed - tofu and tempeh could both greatly improve maternal and child
(or almost anyone's) nutrition. I don't see miso as playing a central role
in anyone's diet, but tofu and tempeh are both excellent protein sources
and can indeed serve as the main protein sources. (Miso is more of a
seasoning, and has a very high sodium content.) Soymilk can also
contribute greatly to mother and child nutrition.
>Another possibility that occured to me just as I hit "send" would be to
>contact a local Buddhist church that is primarily Japanese ethnicity.
>There is some chance you might find someone there who is still making miso.
>A google search for "how to make miso paste" turns up quite a few
>listings, including some videos on the process. i.e.
William Shurtleff and Akiko Aoyagi wrote a book on miso. I have two of
their books (on tofu and tempeh) and they include directions for making
both. They are wonderful books, and very, very thorough. I did not buy
'The Book of Miso' only because I don't like miso (too salty for me), so it
is not something I particularly want to do.
Details (from Amazon):
The Book of Miso (Hardcover)
by William Shurtleff (Author), Akiko Aoyagi (Author)
# Hardcover: 280 pages
# Publisher: Ten Speed Press; Revised edition (March 1, 2004)
# Language: English
# ISBN-10: 1580083366
# ISBN-13: 978-1580083362
# Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.5 x 1.3 inches
# Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
It's not cheap - the cheapest copy they have (a used hardcover book) is
$37.03. Maybe a less expensive copy could be located via using one of the
used book search engines, such as Addall.com.
Amazon also has a combined version - both books (presumably somewhat
condensed) printed together - this is much cheaper ($1.91) and (the only)
reviewer says that the book includes directions for making both.
Details on this one:
The Book of Tofu & Miso (Hardcover)
William Shurtleff (Author), Akiko Aoyagi (Author)
# Hardcover: 278 pages
# Publisher: Ten Speed Press (January 2001)
# Language: English
# ISBN-10: 1580083587
# ISBN-13: 978-1580083584
# Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.6 x 1.9 inches
# Shipping Weight: 3 pounds
'The Book of Tofu' and 'The Book of Tempeh' not only taught me how to cook
with both, but also how to *make* both. They are really excellent books. If
I were at all interested in miso, I'd spend the $37 for 'The Book of Miso',
based on my opinion of the books on tofu and tempeh. (I'd want the full
tofu book too.)
Amazon also has 'The Book of Tofu' and 'The Book of Tempeh', at very
reasonable prices. Just plug 'William Shurtleff' into the search box.
I bought the tofu and tempeh books way back when....I think in the early
Shurtleff gives great details on making both on a community, low-tech scale
- as they are (or maybe were) traditionally made in Japan. (Aoyagi did all
the illustrations but I don't think she did any of the writing). Shurtleff
also gives comparisons of their nutrition with many other foods, how the
protein grams per acre compare to those of meat, and so on. Both would fit
very easily into a permaculture scheme of things. No expensive equipment
needed at all. I can vouch for this from long personal experience: I
still make tofu sometimes, but I sometimes buy it nowadays and I usually
buy tempeh rather than making it now, only because I cannot do *everything*
myself, and I'm not getting younger...in fact, I'm not getting younger
faster and faster. Both are easily available even in small-town USA now.
Both tempeh and tofu are very suitable for production on either a household
or community scale. Probably a community enterprise would be the best;
similar to a small-town bakery. I can remember when the USA had small-town
bakeries and I only wish we still did. And I wish we (living in a small
town in the USA) also had a tofu and tempeh shop!
I started making tofu by making soymilk using a blender, and wow, was that
a pain in the neck. (The beans must be blended in water that is boiling
hot.) Now I have a lovely soymilk maker and it's a really easy process to
make the soymilk (soak soybeans; put soybeans and water in soymilk maker,
turn it on, then you can go away, and it beeps when it is ready, taking
about 15 minutes). Once you have the soymilk, it's easy to make tofu as
well. It's easy and very quick to make soymilk with this machine.
In case anyone is interested, I have a Soyajoy and I recommend it: I think
it's a lovely machine and well built - I believe it will last a long time.
It does an excellent job of making soymilk. (See www.soymilkmaker.com). The
price is $100 which includes shipping within the contiguous 50 states (of
the USA). If I were buying it now, I'd be tempted by the super-duper one
which costs $109, although I believe their basic operation is very similar.
It's difficult for me to see how the basic model can be improved.
Basically, once you've made the soymilk, to make it into tofu, you just
heat it to not quite boiling and add a coagulating agent (there are
several, all of which are described in 'The Book of Tofu'). Then you spoon
out the curds, and let them settle in a container, with a weight on top.
(This process is almost identical to making cottage cheese). Tempeh is
also easy to make.
-- North-Central Pennsylvania, USA
The world has enough for everyone's need,
but not enough for everyone's greed.
Attributed to Mahatma Gandhi.
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