Amazake can be literally translated as sweet sake. As the name shows it tastes like sweet sake, but amazake made from rice koji is non-alcoholic. Another type of amazake made from sake kasu (lees left from sake production) is alcoholic.
Rice koji is rice covered with a kind of mold. And this mold is enzyme and fermentation starter. By fermenting rice with rice koji below 60°C (140°F), starch turns to sugar. So that without adding any sugar, amazake tastes very sweet. It sounds more like chemistry than cooking.
It’s not difficult to make amazake, but it takes time. So that it is a good idea to make amazake in a large batch, and freeze the portions you don’t use immediately. You could buy amazake from Japanese grocery stores, but your homemade amazake is much tastier and nutritious.
Rice koji can be found near miso section at Japanese grocery stores, as it requires refrigeration. Coldmountain Rice Koji is the most likely you will find. But if you can’t find it near by or want to get organic koji or brown rice koji, you can order online. Other than making amazake, rice koji is used to make sake or miso.
The method I introduce here requires a rice cooker. If you have one, this is another way to utilize it. If you don’t have one, I strongly recommend to get one. (Read more about rice cookers.)
Previous Comments (Please add new comments under the “REVIEW” tab.)
maria, Submitted on 2015/10/20 at 5:25 pm
if i have dry rice koji already made, HOW CAN I EAT IT?
Yuki, Submitted on 2015/10/20 at 11:08 pm | In reply to maria.
Dry rice koji is not to be eaten by itself. Rice koi (dry or raw) is used to make amazake or sake or something else. I used dry rice koji for this amazake recipe.