Miso is a traditional food in China and Japan. It comes in the form of a fermented dough with a very pronounced taste and very salty. Its color varies from brown to white chocolate cream. It is obtained from soybeans, sea salt and, depending on the manufacturing, barley and rice.
The seeds are first steamed, then mixed with brine and finally be inoculated with the koji. The latter is a seed mash containing the fungus Aspergillus oryzae which stimulates the fermentation. The mixture is aged for a period ranging from a few weeks to three years. It then operates a slow fermentation which produces small amounts of alcohol and lactic acid, which act as natural preservatives.
Over time, this natural yeast and its bacteria are gradually degraded to cereals and beans amino acids, fatty acids and easily digestible simple sugars. Henceforth miso makes an excellent food for improved digestion.
High in protein, miso is both a condiment and a basis for soups or sauces. It easily replaces salt in daily cooking. It enhances the taste of cereals, beans and vegetables. It is also used as brine, in the preparation of sauces and creams, spreads, as well as for seasoning food.
The virtues of miso
In addition to its good taste, miso contains all the essential amino acids, making it a source of complete protein. It is also low in fat and contains several B vitamins The unpasteurized miso helps digestion and assimilation of nutrients. Indeed, it contains probiotics and fifty different enzymes all beneficial for our human organism.
A digestive tonic
Miso is a digestive tonic and is alkaline in our system. We prefer it unpasteurized because it provides more vitamins, minerals, enzymes and basic nutrients. Miso alleviates the symptoms of most gastrointestinal disorders: gastric reflux, hyperacidity, heartburn and stomach ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea / constipation, flatulence, Crohn’s disease.
Good bacteria for optimum intestinal health
Good bacteria proliferates in unpasteurized miso. It is therefore an excellent source of probiotic elements such as lactobacillus which promotes regeneration of a beneficial intestinal flora, fights against harmful microorganisms andfacilitates the absorption of nutrients.
It also protects the body against pathogens (Salmonella, E. coli, Shigella, C. difficile and Staphylococcus aureus, in particular), reduces the intensity of yeast infection (candidiasis), reduces lactose and gluten intolerance.
By cons, miso is a significant source of sodium. It is therefore advisable for people who follow a low-salt diet for heart problems or high blood pressure for example, to go sparingly with miso.
The different types of miso
There are different varieties of miso whose flavor and fragrance differ depending on the quality of their components, the climate and the environment in which it was prepared, the duration of fermentation and manufacturing method. Here are some types of miso:
Shiro miso, white miso. The Shiro Miso or Miso Blanc is a variety of young miso, which is characterized by a very mild taste, almost sweet. It’s the sweetest and ideal as an introduction to this miso flavor.
Aka miso, red miso. As shiro miso is made with white rice but it tastes a little deeper and a darker color one. It still remains sweet to the taste.
Genmai miso, miso brown rice. A miso to brown rice, it has a mild nutty flavor and has more character than the shiro miso and aka.
Mugi miso, barley miso. It is obtained from barley, soy beans and sea salt. Softer, it is well suited to everyday cooking. It has a slight earthy, slightly pronounced aroma and is used throughout the year. He needs 18 months or 24 months of fermentation to mature. This is the traditional miso rural Japan.
Hatcho-Miso, soy miso. It only includes soya beans and sea salt. It is made with less water and less salt than other varieties of miso. He needs two years to mature fermentation.
Soybean miso has a rich and strong flavor, thick and dry consistency, and although that can be consumed throughout the year, it is traditionally enjoyed in soups during winter. It can also be mixed by half in soups with other varieties of miso. It is the most concentrated miso taste.
With all these virtues and possible uses, why not indulge yourself using miso in your diet. It is more natural than taking probiotics or enzymes supplements.