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Hello hummingbirdkiss, welcome to the DIY club :)

thanks so much Danielkumiadi it is a disease isn't it ..if it can be made I have to try 

I make fish sauce and my husband almost moved out but he now understands why! it is so good! 

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Hai Takadi, can you tell me why we need to weight the actual soybean and flour?


The total salinity of the end product should be at least 18 percent, not just the brine. This number was derived from reverse calculations done from sodium levels from the nutritional facts label on the back of the kikkoman soy sauce bottle, as well as some numbers I found during some research I did (inlcuding recommended numbers from the company itself).  If you put just the soy cakes in without accounting for extra salt, the salt will redistribute into the soy cakes out of the brine and lower the total salt density and make it a more inviting environment for other microbes. This had happened to me while my soy sauce was out in the hot sun so it was starting to form a skin of yeast or bacteria on top, and it started to smell a little funky (a smell that reminded me of parmesan cheese, a little like vomit, lol). Anyways it didn't smell horrible or rotten and it got better after I added more salt, but unfortunately, I had to totally redo my batch because an animal had actually gotten into it and ate all the soycakes!  :wacko: Had to dump the whole thing out


Redoing my batch, I used about twice the amount of soy, 10 lbs of soy beans and 15 liters of water. Measured out 18 percent of total weight of soybeans cakes and water for salt. The soybean cakes were weighed after the mold had taken hold to account for any weight change. It's been almost three weeks and the soy sauce has already gotten considerably darker and is starting to smell like a strong miso, with something extra that I can't describe (it smells like caramelized or cured meat for some reason). It has gotten considerably colder outside where I am so I brought it back inside and am stirring it every 1-2 days. Not sure what the lack of sun and warmth will do for the end product but I am planning to age this for at least 6 months to 2 years, taking out samples every six months. Hopefully the long aging times will more than make up for it. 





Edited by takadi (log)
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thanks so much Danielkumiadi it is a disease isn't it ..if it can be made I have to try 

I make fish sauce and my husband almost moved out but he now understands why! it is so good! 


If you've already made fish sauce, soy sauce should be a piece of cake! I would be evicted if I tried that lol. 


If you are interested in making korean style soy sauce and doenjang, I found a really awesome documentary on youtube that explains the basics of making it




Edited by takadi (log)
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So, Takadi, i must weight my soycake, my water, and then weight 18% salt (from total weight cake + water) and put into the water?


No, its not desease, maybe it just came from our DNA. Lol

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Yup you got it...although the salt percentage is really up to your discretion. It can go as low as <16 percent although that is more risky and probably requires more purposeful innoculation and a more sterile environment. It can go as high as 25 to 30 percent.  From what I've seen however, 18-20 percent seems to be the usual number.

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OK, i decide to dip my meju / soy cake after... errrr.. (i forgot the first date i fermented my soy cake.. wait.. I'll count it from my last post :raz:) owww its 5 september 2015 and today is 5 October, exactly a month then.. its completely dried with not so much mold, you can see in the photo. has a little "meaty" and soy smell, plus little bit of bamboo smell. i just leave it in direct sunlight day and night and about 2 weeks i just leave it in warm warehouse / closet upstairs (actually almost forget about it hehe).




and what i found in the room, an old 30 years glass jar, i remembered this jar on my dining table back in 80's, i've measured it and it contains 3,7 liters of water, so its 1 US gallon volume. marked it.





my tap water and well water are about 250 ppm, so its rather hard water, and must be boiled first (well, its Indonesia lol), or can i use reversed osmosis water as well? and how much water needed to ferment 370 grams of dried meju?


thanks. will dip the meju right wafter i got water level suggestion.

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After calculating from http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Soy-Sauce, 370gr of meju only use 800gr of water. dang.. i must find smaller container. then i found clay pot for boil Chinese herbal medicine, can hold 1 litre ++.




still sterilizing with boiling some water directly on stove.



forget about the clay pot. it got crack, water drip out.. how unlucky :sad:

Edited by danielkurniadi (log)
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Divide meju to 4 pieces, then here is how it looks, get some mold inside too.



Finally, fermenting time! got a 2 litres plastic container.



Today is 9 October 2015 (as my reminder) :raz:

This brine contain 20% kosher salt. (without iodine).

Edited by danielkurniadi (log)
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What is it about soybeans in particular that seem to make it the only bean one can use to make a sauce with the taste, etc. we associate with 'soy sauce'?

I know one can make soy sauce substitutes from things like mushrooms, but why does there seem to be no information about making it with any other bean? Adzuki beans may produce a much sweeter sauce - I can understand that since they are made into 'sweet red bean paste' so something in them must be 'sweeter' - but is there another fairly commonly available bean which would ferment and produce a sauce that is similar to soy? It is much harder to find but one can now buy miso which is made with chickpeas and other beans so why not a 'chickpea' or 'black eyed pea' sauce that tastes very much like a 'soy sauce'?

edited because I thought that I was resurrecting an old thread - but apparently didn't read to the end of that thread (since I found the thread through an outside search).

Edited by Deryn (log)

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Deryn, see the following links






Your hunches are correct. I'm currently fermenting a chickpea "miso" or a hozon in David Chang's terminology. But pretty much anything with significant amounts of protein can be fermented to make a soy sauce/miso like product, particularly nuts and legumes and certain grains. Of course different sources are more conducive to different types of molds and bacteria...it would be interesting to see what a koji fermented cheese would look like

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Thank you, Takadi.

I don't think I am in a position to make my own due to where I live, not to mention that while it is obviously a very interesting process, it is probably above my pay grade. But, I am fascinated with what you and Daniel are doing.

I can only hope that eventually Momofuku might sell the bonji - currently I see they do but on a 'wholesale only' basis. I would love to try it.

I have to avoid soy as much as possible but Asian type dishes are my favorite foods it seems so I wish that a reasonable 'sauce' similar in taste, etc. made from other common beans was also readily available. When a recipe only calls for a bit it is easy to just leave it out but some require a fair amount of soysauce and that is trickier.

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After 4 months and going very well, somebody put my container below birdcage. The result is: something from that bird felldown into my container, bird food or maybe its feces. And grow another mold on my soycake. So consider it spoiled. RIP my Soy Sauce.


Maybe i must stop this. Before i kill somebody LOL.. AAARRRGGHH!!!


Edited by danielkurniadi (log)

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When I've submerged the dried soy cakes in the water, what do I do regarding the lid? Is it meant to be left open? Covered with a cheese cloth to get air in but keep insects out? Or can I leave a lid completely on? I hope it can be left on so that there's no smell and no insects coming in. I have a balcony and can leave it in the sun all day, so would that help fermentation?

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