Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Day 4: Different brand, same bad taste

Thus far I've been eating this brand of natto:

I have no idea what it's called because there is no English on the packaging whatsoever. I call it "faux-wood-grain-packaging" natto.

Today I switched to this natto:

I call it "crazy-cartoon-natto-chef"natto. It tastes more or less the same. It did have a slight "gritty" texture, like the beans were coated in some salt or something. I wish. Today I tried eating the natto "absent-mindedly" while reading the paper. This helped. I ate about half the natto.

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Made in DNA said...

Yukisaibai means "organically grown", and daizu means "soy beans"... "Organically-grown Soybeans Natto". Pretty boring name... hahahaha.

And the second one reads "Munouyaku Sumibi" (no-pesticides charcoal fire)... ie Charcoal-cooked Non-Pesticidal Soybeans... which is really odd since natto is supposedly not cooked. Even my wife was like "whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa?" Hey, I'm just the translator. ;) The character's name is GANKO OJISAN... "Serious Middle-aged Man" (literally), or "Mr. Serious", meaning a lot of serious thought went into making this natto.

5:26 AM  
Chad Allen said...

Thanks for the translations!

I'm guessing the Serious Middle-Aged Man (or as I still prefer to call him "crazy-cartoon-natto-chef") actually knows what he's talking about. There is some warming-up of things, though no proper cooking, that happens as part of the process. The beans have to be steamed, of course, and then the natto has to be kept warm for about 24 hours at around 40 degress C to help the fermentation (see this ugly but informative page for more details). So maybe this last bit is done with some charcoal. Nonetheless, I can say definitively that at no point does any "charcoal" taste creep into the natto as part of this process regardless of what is used to do the heating-up of things.

8:04 PM  

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