Since I tried a cup of my friend’s homemade doburoku, unfiltered and unpasteurized sake, I started to research how to make it. Sake sold in the United States can be very expensive. I tend to hesitate to use those expensive sake for cooking, but sake for cooking I can buy at Japanese grocery stores contain salt and tastes terrible.
Doburoku recipe I introduce here is additive free, unfiltered and unpasteurized. It’s perfectly good (really tasty) for both drinking and cooking. My husband prefers to drink homemade doburoku over store bought sake.
There are many slightly different doburoku recipes you can find. If you are a connoisseur and want to make vintage, you may need to get the best ingredients and keep trying to achieve your goal with great care. But the basic recipe of brewing doburoku is very simple and forgiving.
As long as you have rice koji, Japanese rice, and dry yeast (for bread), you can start brewing. Japanese grocery stores tend to carry rice koji, but I’ve never seen it in other Asian stores. If you are out of luck, you can get from Home Brew Sake, which also provides tons of sake brewing information.
It is illegal to brew sake in Japan, but it’s perfectly legal to brew alcoholic beverage for your own consumption in the United States. Therefore, real sake yeast, which are not available through retail distribution in Japan, are sold in the United States, even though bread yeast can brew sake as well.
I recommend to brew doburoku in the simplest (cheapest) way first. If you fail or don’t like the taste, experiment using different or better ingredients. Most likely you are pleasantly surprised to know how easy to brew doburoku, love the taste, and hooked.
Ingredients (Makes about 3 Pints)
- 3 cups white Japanese rice or Japanese sweet rice (1 cup is 180 cc in this case)
- 10 oz rice koji
- 1 package active dry yeast
- Filtered water or bottled water (I used filtered water. If you buy bottled water, choose soft water, because Japanese water is soft.)
Sake Brewing References