How to Make Amazake
Amazake made with glutinous rice
Every morning this week, I’ve been able to treat myself to amazake, a fermented beverage that you can make with cooked rice and rice koji. Koji is a type of fungus that ferments the cooked rice and converts the carbs into simple sugars. I like to eat it in the form of porridge, smoothie and puddings, but you can also add it to sweeten dressings or baked goods. My previous post has a recipe for amazake scones.
Amazake translates to “sweet sake” but it has no alcohol at all, so it’s safe for children to consume.
Here are the three ingredients needed to make amazake: water, cooked sweet rice, and rice koji.
Basic Amazake Recipe
(weight measurements provided)
1 1/2 cups cooked sweet rice (glutinous or mochi rice) 200 grams
2 cups hot water (70 degrees C/140 F) 500 ml
1/2 cup rice koji 200 grams
1. Cool the rice slightly and mix with the hot water in a bowl.
2. Rub the grains of rice koji between your fingers. Stir it into the cooked rice and water.
3. Loosely cover the bowl so some air can still can into it. Place it in a warm spot so it maintains a temperature between 60-70 degrees C/120-140 F. Stir it every few hours. If kept in a consistently warm spot, the amazake base should be done in 10-12 hours. Taste it after 8 hours to see if it is becoming sweet. When the mixture is very sweet, it is ready.
4. To store it, refrigerate for up to 2 to 3 days or freeze for up to one month.
Heat it with added water and consume as a traditional amazake beverage.
Warm the amazake and eat it like porridge.
Blend it into a smoothie with added fruit.
Heat it with added soymilk and agar agar powder to make a pudding.
Stir the cooked rice and hot water together; then add the rice koji.
There are many ways to keep the rice mixture warm. I fill my crock pot with hot water and makes sure the temperature is between 120 and 140 F.
I put a plate over the top of the rice and place the crock pot lid on top of everything. Place it on the “warm” setting for an hour, then turn it off. Place a towel over the crock pot to insulate it. Check the temperature periodically to make sure the temperature is between 120 and 140 F. If it gets lower, you can add hot water or turn on the “warm” setting again. If the temperature goes above 140 F, quickly remove the rice bowl and cool down the water in the crock pot by adding ice cubes until it’s in the proper temperature range again.
After 10-12 hours, your amazake will be sweet and then it’s done.
Amazake Banana Smoothie
1 cup amazake
Blend and serve cold.