When the winter cold sets in, I start to crave something warm, creamy and sweet. Amazake makes me feel cozy and festive, and it’s cultured! It also couldn’t be easier to make. For first timers, it's truly amazing to transform something as plain as rice into something so sweet using a mold. The experience of eating amazake is similar to eating oatmeal with a generous portion of maple syrup. Except the sweetness is accompanied by a nutritional boost - a common nickname for amazake in Japan is "IV drip to drink." Most amazake recipes call for white rice, and you're certainly welcome to experiment with that, but we thought we'd put a twist on the original recipe. You will need koji rice, some uncooked brown rice, and a warm incubation spot. I used my Folding Proofer & Slow Cooker, but many of the methods for incubating tempeh will also work if you're able to maintain a steady 130 degrees.
- 1 cup Plain Brown Rice
- 1 cup Brown Rice Koji
- 6 cups Water, Separated
- Rinse plain brown rice (NOT the koji rice!) to remove additional starch
- Add plain brown rice (NOT koji rice) and 4 cups of water to a cooking pot (do not cover)
- Bring plain brown rice and water to a boil
- Reduce heat to a gentle simmer
- Place lid on pot and cook for 30 minutes
- Pour rice with cooking liquid into your incubator
- Add 2 cups cold water
- Take temperature of rice in incubator. If above 130-135 degrees, wait until it cools to that temperature (you can add a couple ice cubes to speed things along)
- Add koji rice.
- Incubate for 10-13 hours - check on it every half hour or so starting at hour 10. Once it stops getting sweeter every half hour, it's ready!
- Optional: blend your amazake in a blender for a smoother texture and add spices or other flavorings as desired.