Miso Method Dairy Amino Sauces

Based on the success with ricotta miso method cheese creating a Parmesan like flavor in a month or so, I've been trying all sorts of dairy based amino sauces. The examples below are among the most delicious combinations I've discovered so far. I hope they inspire you to develop your own. 


Cayenne Yogurt Amino Hot Sauce
(Flavor Profile: Spicy Pimento Cheese)

Jalapeno Yogurt Amino Hot Sauce
(Flavor Profile: Jalapeno Popper)

Yogurt Amino Hot Sauce Method
By weight, mix two parts yogurt, one part pureed hot peppers, three parts fresh koji and 5% salt against the total. Follow the same containment conditions as you would for miso. Ferment for at least one month in a cool basement or two months in the refrigerator. Keep in mind that there's risk for rancidity due to the fat content, so cool/cold conditions are important for success. 


Buttermilk Sweetened Condensed Milk Amino Sauce
(Flavor Profile: Creamy Sweet Soy Sauce)

Foamed Buttermilk SCM Amino Sauce

Follow the same process above with a mix of three parts buttermilk, one part sweetened condensed milk and four parts fresh koji with 5% salt against all the ingredients. Fridge ferment for at least two months. Foaming the sauce lightens the salt delivery in a dish. Soy lecithin and an immersion blender was used to suspend the bubbles seen above.


Fresh Jasmine Koji and Whey Protein Powder

Whey Protein Amino Paste
(Flavor Profile: Umami Nacho Cheese Sauce)

In the interest of boosting accessible protein to the protease enzymes to create as much umami as possible, I decided to use whey protein powder. It is 75% protein by weight! The mixture was made with equal parts whey powder and fresh koji. Add enough water to make a paste and 5% salt against the total weight. After only five weeks of fermentation, it tastes like a nacho cheese sauce. Crazy!

Now get out there and make a new miso method amino sauce with any protein base you desire. No limits!

As always, please share your ideas to keep the ideas bouncing...

Elements of Kojify the Dinner

Introduction


Microbiologist Ben Wolfe gave a presentation and showed guests our koji
growing with his microscope. Yes, that's Cynthia Graber of Gastropod.


First Course



Kvass fermentation kick started with raw honey.

Schmaltz Richness + Stock Depth + Earthy Beet Kvass = Killer Borscht

Sweet Tart Beet Koji Pickles (Bettarazuke Spin)

Horseradish pickled in gherkin brine smoothed out the harshness.

Schmears of horseradish gherkin cream with beet bettarazuke waiting for borscht.


Second Course



Dried Ricotta Miso, The Next Parmesan

Miso Garlic Lacto-Fermented Sunchokes for a Tart Crunch

Nicco's Ricotta Miso Agnolotti Making Focus


Of course incorporating fresh and dried ricotta miso worked well.


Third Course



Jasmine Shio Koji Marinated Hake
Crazy delicious combination of caramelization, Maillard & umami.

Extra Crunchy & Chewy Fried Rice
Powered by "al dente" cooked rice inspired by the koji making process.

Thai green curry hollandaise over the hake made this dish sing.

We hope all the guests of Kojify the Dinner enjoyed their experience and now better understand the versatility and delicious power of koji. Maybe we inspired you to create new fermentation based flavors as we built and executed this menu. Please share them with us to keep the ideas bouncing.

The intent of this event was to kick start our initiative to teach cooking methods. If you're interested in signing up for a workshop, sharing ideas and/or collaborating, check out our brand new official website. Just a cover page with links, but it does the job for now.

Cippolini Soup Dumplings

I often wonder if whole roasted cippolini onions are worth the effort whenever I see them. Granted they are quite delicious caramelized, but when prepping I end up destroying the first thick layer of some. This time I made an effort to figure out a way to consistently remove just the paper.


After playing around with a couple ideas, I discovered that aggressively rolling the onions on their sides released the paper skin with ease. It crushes the outer cell structure, but what do you care? You were going to roast them anyway.


After roasting the onions with schmaltz, I noted that they looked very much like soup dumplings. In fact, there were more similarities than differences. The only disappointment was that there wasn't enough of a textural difference between the outer "wrap" and inner "filling".


I couldn't help but hold over a few to see if a second roasting the next day would give me the results I was looking for. The inside was hot, creamy and sweet with a touch of caramelization. The outside was nicely browned and had an interesting chewy texture. The "wrapper" needs a little work. Maybe an oven frying technique at the end will crisp it up nicely? Any suggestions?

Sometimes simple investigations lead to unintended discoveries worth pursuing. 

As always, please share your ideas to keep the ideas bouncing...

Cantaloupe Parsley Sorbet - Starting the Frozen Treat Inspiration Chain

Cantaloupe Parsley Stem IPA Vinegar Sorbet

I recently met up with @maxfalkowitz and @verysmallanna out in NYC. Armed with the understanding that we all love making ice cream, Max took us to two killer shops that were inspiring. This led to an idea. I proposed a frozen treat jam session.

Shaved Cantaloupe & Parsley Stems in Light Simple Syrup

The concept is to create a delicious frozen treat inspiration chain. The focus is to have fun with making unusual flavor and texture combinations that we all can experience and benefit from.

Guidelines
  1. Riff on a previously made frozen treat in any way.
  2. Use something in abundance for the base.
  3. Accent with a flavor that has developed over time.
  4. Bonus points for: 
    • using an ingredient that would normally be thrown out
    • using byproducts to make something else
    • creativity of course
  5. Upon completion, post a photo or link with a description of your creation on Twitter or Instagram using #FrozenTreatIdeas, tag @ourcookquest @verysmallanna @maxfalkowitz and hand the challenge off to a friend. 
Cantaloupe Parsley IPA Vinegar Soda

We look forward to seeing all the refreshing mash ups and relationships in between.

As always, please share your investigations to keep the ideas bouncing...

Miso Making Madness

Koji is a crazy enzyme packed medium that has the potential to convert almost anything into a delicious miso. We all know the wonders it does to soybeans. The focus here is to mix koji in with different bases that vary the ratio of protein to carbohydrate to fat and see what happens. I used nutrition facts tables as a rudimentary baseline for comparison. I'm on a mission to see if there are any limits to this process.

End of the First Batch of Plantain Miso
Plantain miso was my first adventure into a mash that wasn't a legume or grain. The high carbohydrate content was what I was most curious about. The nutrition ratio is similar to rice. After a year, the funky green banana scented miso was quite good.

Pepita Paste and Teff Koji

Pepita Miso Looking Like Mustard
Why not a seed? Pepitas seemed like a logical choice due to their use in moles. Somewhat close to the soybean ratio but the carbohydrate dominates instead of protein. Nutty soy sauce paste after 7 months.

Miso Method Hard Cheese
A hard miso cheese was the result of pressing and hanging ricotta inoculated with Jasmine rice koji. Primarily protein and fat. Amazing how similar it was to Parmesan cheese after a couple of months. Check out Miso Method Cheese Making for how the base was made.

Peanut Butter and Jasmine Koji
Ground peanuts were used to make a PB miso. The enzymes converted the high fat content into something ridiculously good after only a couple of months. A peanut butter umami bomb.

Cookie Dough and Teff Koji
Why not use a medium that's already delicious like cookie dough? Twice as much carbohydrates as fat with very little protein. Still waiting on this one...

Cookie Dough Miso Cookies?
Why not bake it off after a short fermentation period to use as breadcrumbs?

White Chocolate and Teff Koji
White chocolate miso had to happen. Interestingly enough, the ratio is very similar to cookie dough. Still too early to know if it'll be good.

Raw Egg and Jasmine Koji
Raw egg is pretty much all protein and fat. We'll see...

The koji enzyme monster has converted everything I've thrown at it into miso with unique characteristics of the base ingredient. Pretty much anything works. I don't have the palate to parse out the protein:carbohydrate:fat ratio conversion differences I was looking for. It has all tasted good so far so maybe it doesn't really matter.

I hope these miso making adventures will inspire you to push the limits of processes you already know and love. The key to discovery is understanding the fundamental method and applying it to your heart's desire.

As always, please share your investigations to keep the ideas bouncing.