You can make amazake in your rice cooker! All you need is rice koji, rice, and water to enjoy this delicious sweet drink.
Photographed by Akio Takeuchi
Ingredients (Approx. 500 ml)
- 200 g rice koji (dry)
- 180 ml rice
- Water for cooking the rice
Prepare the gruel. Rinse the rice and drain. Place in the inner bowl of the rice cooker. Pour water up to the level for 3 rice cups and start the cooking process. (If your rice cooker has a setting for gruel, use that.) Transfer the gruel to a pot with a lid and set aside to cool to 60 degrees Celsius.
To activate the rice koji, the temperature must not be too hot or too cold.
Rub the rice koji between your palms to separate the grains.
As you gently rub and separate the grains, you'll start to get a whiff of the koji fragrance. Rubbing stimulates the rice koji and will promote fermentation when added to the gruel, enhancing the sweetness.
Add the rice koji to the gruel and mix with a wooden spatula until the temperature is about 50 degrees Celsius.
Place a cheesecloth over the pot and put the lid on slightly askew. Place in a pot cozy or wrap in a blanket and set aside for about a day.
The lid needs to be slightly askew to allow fermentation to occur.
Once the mixture is cream-colored and sweet, it's ready to drink. Transfer to a food storage jar and refrigerate.
Will keep for up to two weeks.
If using fresh rice koji the directions are the same as for dry rice koji. Just add to the gruel and start the fermentation process.