Lockdown Miso (Homemade Japanese Bean Paste)


Since moving to Canada, I have made homemade miso several times. Miso is a fermented soybean paste and very important in Japanese cuisine. I need lots of dried soybeans to make it, but strangely I couldn't find the soybeans last time I went to make it, even though Canada should be one of the biggest producing countries of soybeans in the world. So I bought Japanese soybeans grown in Hokkaido when I was in Japan in February, 2020.

I brought Japanese soybeans back to Canada and made Miso. It was just the time that Quebec, where we live, went into lockdown.

To make Miso, you need to boil the soybeans and mash them, add rice yeast, and then just wait for them to ferment. Normally, six months are enough time for them to properly ferment and be ready, but you can also let them rest for longer in order to get them more mature. In our place, I think the process of fermentation is relatively slow, so I prefer taking more time to let them ferment. 

I prepared the Miso in March, 2020. It has been sitting in the corner of the kitchen since then. I opened my Miso once at the end of last summer to turn it over. Besides that, the Miso was quietly staying at home with us.

Now, it has been 1 year and 1 month. I felt like I should open it to check, so did I yesterday.


The Miso sometimes gets mouldy on the surface, especially in the summer, but this time there was no sign of mould at all. I turned it over again so the fermentation process would go  evenly, and tasted it. It was good Miso, but I felt it still had a sharp saltiness. As we have some Miso left in the fridge, I didn’t have to rush to stop its fermentation. Therefore, I put the lid on it again and am going to wait for a few more months until it gets matured and mellows out.

This is my lockdown Miso, and I have a feeling that it will turn out to be the best miso I’ve ever made. We will share it with our friends when we regain the normal life as we had before Covid and we can invite friends around.

> How to make Miso (Bean Paste): Homemaking Fermented soybean paste




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