THE AMAZAKE MAKING
1. MAKING THE KOJI
Koji is an essential component of Amazake (sweet sake). Koji is a fermentation starter for alcohols. The literal translation of Koji is “liquor ferment”. It is to sake what sourdough is to bread.
How to make Koji:
a) Wash the rice well to remove rice bran. We use only white rice grown in our region.
b) Soak the washed rice for a given length of time so that the washed rice will be able to absorb water. Drain the water after 1-2 hours.
c) Steam the rice for about one hour.
d) Sprinkle Koji mold on steamed rice so the mold will attach itself to the rice. Koji is complete 40 hours after sprinkling.
Steamed rice sprinkled with Koji mold should be carefully handled to maintain adequate temperature. We use automated two-stage Koji making machine so that the temperature of rice turns to be around 35°C until next morning.
3. BOTTLING AMAZAKE
Finalized Amazake is bottled after analysis of its components, strict quality inspection and sterilization.
Impurities and fill level are carefully inspected in the filling process before going to the labeling process.
2. PREPARE AND MAKE AMAZAKE
a) Finalized Koji is placed in special boxes and stored in a special refrigerator used exclusively for Amazake Koji in order to remove excess moisture.
b) Put Koji, steamed rice and water in the preparation tank to start saccharifying fermentation (for 15 hours under 55-58℃)
c) Sweet and nutritious Amazake is complete on the next Quality control on the prepared Amazake is extremely important. If the preparation temperature is lower than 50℃ the taste will become sour. If over 60℃, it will lack sweetness.
Bottled Amazake should pass final analysis of components and microorganism test to make sure there is no quality abnormality as a final product.