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How to make your own miso and tofu for soups

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What's better than a hot bowl of soup on a cold winter day or evening? Well, as far as food choices go, there is not much - in our opinion, at least.

And, if you are like us and are enormous fans of soybeans, then you are in luck. There are so many delicious soup recipes out there that feature soybeans or their byproducts, including miso, tofu and even sprouting beans. All of these soups would make for a perfect night in, cozied up with friends or family.

But did you know that you can easily make your own miso and tofu at home using tasty Laura® Soybeans? That's right! With Laura® Soybeans, you can can truly elevate the flavor of any soup or other dish you whip up in the kitchen.

Why you should eat more soybeans

Before we dive into those tasty soup recipes, you should know why it's great that you are adding more soybeans to your diet. Trust us, you body will thank you - and so will your tastebuds.

Soybeans are the perfect healthy diet addition. They are one of the best plant-based protein sources you can find, with one cup of boiled soybeans containing about 29 grams of protein.

Soybeans are also packed full of fiber and a wide variety of vitamins, including folate, copper, manganese, phosphorus, thiamine and Vitamin K1.

But perhaps the biggest reason to add soybeans to your diet is that they contain isoflavones, which can promote bone health and reduce menopause symptoms, among other benefits.

How to make your own miso

If you want to make your own soups that feature soybeans - and want to do everything from scratch - then miso is one of the traditional Japanese ingredients that you will need to learn how to make at home.

Miso is a seasoning that is made by fermenting soybeans with salt and koji. It has wonderful health properties, including impressive amounts of essential minerals and a source of B, E and K vitamins. Since it's fermented, it also features great bacteria for your gut.

Now, making your own miso does take some time, so you have to plan ahead. Luckily, though the process is very lengthy, it's actually quite simple. Let's take a look at this miso recipe from Just One Cookbook.

Ingredients

1. 1.43 pounds of organic soybeans.

2. 13.2 ounces of fine sea salt and a separate 1/2 tablespoon of sea salt

3. 5 cups of rice koji

4. Filtered water

Tools

For this recipe, you will need a one-gallon container and an object that can fit inside the container, such as a bag of table salt. Aim for a weight that's about a third of the miso weight. You may also want to invest in a kitchen scale.

You will also need a large serving bowl, plastic wrap and vodka - used to clean and disinfect the container and prevent mold from growing.

Day 1:

1. Wash your soybeans.

2. Soak the soybeans for 18 hours.

Day 2:

  1. Pressure cook the soybeans for 20 minutes and simmer for three to four hours.
  2. Mash the soybeans.
  3. Combine the soybeans with salt and koji.
  4. Pack the resulting mixture into a jar.
  5. Store and wait for six months.

Take a look at the original recipe post for more tips on making miso.

How to make your own tofu

Like miso, tofu is another traditional Japanese ingredient made from soybeans that is frequently found in many popular soup recipes. Knowing how to make your own at home is very valuable if you want to make sure the soybeans you are using are of the highest quality.

Why make tofu at home? Because freshly made tofu is wonderfully creamy, sweet and healthy - just like any other product made from soybeans.

And we have a great homemade tofu recipe for you!

Ingredients

1. Soy milk. Learn how to easily make your own soy milk right at home, too.

2. A coagulant, such as Nigari seaweed, gypsum or Epsom salt.

Directions

  1. Use a large pot to bring the soy milk to a boil, then reduce the heat to just above a simmer.
  2. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Scrape the bottom of the pot to avoid scorching. Skim off skin that may form.
  3. Place a sieve over a bowl and line the sieve with cheesecloth. Slowly pour the milk into the sieve and let it cool for about 20 minutes.
  4. Bunch and twist the cheesecloth, then squeeze it to release as much of the leftover soy milk as possible. Keep squeezing until the solids are almost dry. You can then discard the solids. There should be four to six cups of soy milk.
  5. Next, dissolve your coagulant in water. Use a 1/2 cup of water for every one tablespoon of coagulant. Prepare this before the next step.
  6. Place to soy milk in a pot on the stove and heat it to a simmer. Simmer for about five minutes taking care not to let it scorch.
  7. Remove the soy milk from the heat and slowly add the dissolved coagulant into the warm soy milk. Stir vigrorously!
  8. Cover the pot and let the soy sit for about 15 minutes. The result should be a whey that is pale yellow in color and curds.
  9. Drain the pot of liquid. You can strain using a slotted ladle or use the cheesecloth method again. Add the curds to a sieve if you opt for using a ladle.
  10. Place the curds into a square or rectangular mold. Cover the mold with several cheesecloth. Add some type of weight on top of the mold to press the curds down.
  11. Let the mold sit for 15 to 25 minutes. Let it sit 5 to 10 minutes more for a firmer tofu.
  12. Next, place the tofu in the refrigerator to chill.
  13. Once the tofu has chilled and is firm, cut it up into cubes and add it to your favorite soup recipe!

Now go find some excellent soup recipes

Now that you have recipes for homemade miso and tofu, this opens up a world of opportunity for making wonderful soups that feature soybeans.

Don't know where to start? We have a tofu and mushroom miso soup recipe found here that we hope you will give a try.

Be sure to check our Laura® Soybeans blog frequently for more soybean insights and recipes.