[JAPAN] Special Soy Sauce Yamabun from Tohoku Region in Japan

We often use the soy sauce to cook many dishes; that’s why I feel now is the time to share more about it. A lot of soy sauce available in the market where the processes and ingredients may differ, but I’m talking here about the Japanese Soy Sauce. Soy Sauce (Shoyu, 醤油 しょうゆ) is one of the most traditional foods of Japan, and most of the Asian cuisine uses it. Similar like Miso, the kanji words 醤油 literally means ‘fermented food oil’. This sauce is being used as a condiment for many recipes; that is why it is so common to have this sauce in their kitchen and mine as well. Yes, I like the character and the unique taste of Japanese soy sauce. The unique taste happens because of the glutamate, which is attributable to the Umami, one of the basic tastes.

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Generally, soy sauce is made from a mixture of soybeans, wheat, salt and yeast. Now, let’s see how they make the Japanese Soy Sauce at a traditional soy sauce maker in the Tohoku region. They started with the basic steps, and first of all, to roast the soybeans. Then they created the Yamabun/Bunjiemon sauce in small ovens, as shown in the photo and repeated the procedure several times, with a little soy at a time (40-50 kg). Instead of using a modern system as many others do, they still continue to produce soy sauce in the traditional method, with extensive burning oil to keep the tradition and authenticity in the soy sauce.

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The fermentation process is used to preserve the food, no matter how long they have to wait if the result is authentic and of high quality: they want it! In fact, up to five years to get this tasty sauce, symbol of the unity of the taste of the Tohoku! After a period of 3-5 years, the fermentation is complete and everyone is almost ready to taste the Yamabun/Bunjiemon soy sauce! They used the sheets present in the photo to pressed and filter compound. Once the sauce is in the raw state after being filtered, they used the oven to heat it further. There is still a crucial part to do before the bottling process.

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In the end, the soy sauce is wrapped neatly and produces a drop of the rich and complex flavor. That is why many people like to add soy sauce to many dishes as the final touch because every drop of Yamabun / Bunjiemon soy sauce can enhance the flavor of each recipe used. Mr. Suzuki is one of the men behind the traditional process, and you can also browse more interesting things in Tohoku region by visiting this page, https://www.facebook.com/TasteofTohoku?fref=ts

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Author: myfunfoodiary

Myfunfoodiary as Indonesian Food and Travel Blog was born in July 2012 and has become one of the valuable online source for locals, tourists, food enthusiasts and industry professionals. It is a Jakarta based Food and Travel Blog managed by Mullie Marlina, a young, lovely, cheerful and blessed wife who loves to share her culinary and travel experiences through her writing. You’ll find her honest reviews, valuable suggestions, objective ratings and recommendation of eateries in Jakarta and selected cities in Indonesia and abroad. Her curated restaurant reviews are based on her meticulous inquiries and her rich dining experience in various restaurants in Jakarta. She has also traveled to different cities and countries where she finds interesting and inspiring dishes, cuisines and excellent dining ambience which she also included in the list. From recommendations, restaurant experiences, events, travel destinations, and recipes, readers will find anything food related in this website. She would really appreciate your feedback, and would love to hear about any suggestions, events regarding food, or just to drop in to say “Hi”. Again, thank you so much for dropping by, and she hopes you enjoy reading her journal. Thank you so much for all your supports! God bless you! ^_^

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