Fermentation in Japan
In this page, I’d like to talk about fermentation in Japan.
Because fermentation is very important in Japanese foods.
Not a day passes for the Japanese without eating fermented food. For example, Soybean paste (Miso), Soy sauce (Shôyu), Nattô, Sake.
In the extremely humid climate, people have always tried to get along with bacteria.
In short, Japanese culture has progressed by fighting as well as harnessing them.
Fermentation also increases nutritional value.
For example, Nattô produced by fermentation contains about 10 times more vitamin B2 and 180-300 times more aminoacid than simply cooked soybeans.
Nattô also contains many digestive enzymes as well as enzyme that melts thrombus.
In addition, fermentation produces the aroma that excites appetite and flavor called “umami” caused by increased amino acid.
fermentation in Japan
Next, I’d like to introduce a Japanese verb, “kamo-su” which is used like this:
1) Chôwa wo kamo-su
2) Butsugi wo kamo-su
The first phrase1) means “creating harmony (“和”), Harmony (“和”) is one of the most important words in Japanese society.
To the contrary, the second 2) means “causing disputes” or “causing a scandal”.
In this way, the word “kamo-su” is used to describe the action of creating or causing something complicate or unexpected.
From the earliest times, Japanese people felt something mythical in the process of fermentation.
Some argue that the linguistic origin of “kamo-su” is “kami-su“.
“Kami” means God (gods) and “Kami-su” means “the god does it”.