Thursday, January 5, 2012

Making a big batch Amazake with big Kamado-san donabe!

I’ve been making a lot of Amazake (and also a lot of steamed ankimo) with my donabe lately.

Instead of regular small size Amazake making with Miso-shiru Nabe, I decided to make a big batch with my large-size double-lid donabe rice cooker, “Kamado-san”. It became quite a dynamic process.

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(all US measurement) First, I made porridge with 2 cups (about 480 ml) sweet rice with about 1.2L (1.2 qt) water. To make porridge, cover with both lids, and set over medium+ heat and cook for 25-30 minutes. Uncover and stir for a few minutes until all the liquid is absorbed and rice reaches porridge-like consistency.

Then, let it cool down (with the lid on) to about 150F degrees. Meanwhile, in a bowl, rub together about 3.5 cups of rice koji with both hands until slightly aromatic. Once the porridge has reached down to 150F, add rice koji and mix them together by a wooden spatula completely.

Kamado-san is quickly covered with both lids then wrapped with towel. I put 2 hand warmer packets – one on top and the other on the bottom – and wrap again with a blanket to keep the inside temperature warm. Inside of the donabe should be kept at around 130-145F degrees for koji mold to incubate. It’s rested for 8-10 hours (or overnight, if you make it before going to bed like I normally do). That’s it!

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So, the next day, I checked my big-batch Amazake. I unwrapped the blanket and opened Kamado-san lids. The mixture was perfectly turned into pure Amazake!

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I put the mixture to a blender until pretty smooth. Wow, the result was almost 2L (2-qt) Amazake concentrate! To serve Amazake traditional style (my favorite style after all), you can mix amazake with equal amount of water and heat until warm. Pour into a cup and drop a little amount of grated ginger.

Or, you can be creative, too. I made Amazake & persimmon smoothie. I put about 1/2C Amazake, 1 over-ripe persimmon, 1/2C soymilk, and some ice cubes in a blender and blended until smooth. It was extremely tasty! Jason even said it was mind-blowing and was the best smoothie he’s ever had! He also said it was like a drinking cupcake.

Amazake banzai.
Happy donabe life.