Japanese natto is a soy-fermented dish commonly eaten for breakfast in Japan. It’s sticky, slimy, slimy, and also known to have a distinctive odor, so natto is a treat not everyone likes, but it’s a nutritious and healthy food.
Natto uses a bacterium called “Bacillus subtilis” to ferment it. Fermented natto has a distinctive odor produced by bacteria, so there are people who like or dislike this taste. This dish appeared around the 10th century BC and mid 3rd century AD. It is thought that natto began to be sold as merchandise during the Edo period, and it has become a part of Japanese breakfast.
Japanese natto has many types, classified according to size, type and processing method of soybeans, etc. Natto types with different sizes of soybeans are classified into 3 types: large, medium and small. . .There is another type of Japanese natto called “hikiwari natto”. This type is processed by crushing the soybeans before fermentation.
Natto is sold in every corner of Japan, from the market to the convenient store. It is the easiest dish to buy in Japan but it is quite challenge to eat.
Recently, you can buy natto for around 100 yen (3 packs of natto) at places like supermarkets or convenience stores in Japan. Natto is rich in Vitamin K, soy protein and fiber. Natto also contains enzymes that are good for preventing blood clots.
Besides buying it, you can discover how Japanese makes this super-food at the Mito factory of Takano Food Corporation in Mito City, Ibaraki Prefecture, you can visit and learn the natto manufacturing process. There is also a Natto museum where it details everything related to this food.
Natto is mostly served with rice. However, if you don’t like the distinctive taste of natto, eat natto along with another dish. Adding different ingredients or spices not only makes this dish more delicious, but also lessens its signature flavor.
Natto can combine with ingredients such as scallions, shaved tuna, kimchi, raw chicken eggs or if you are not familiar with raw eggs, you can eat them with mustard, mayonnaise, dried seaweed, pickled apricots, seeds pepper and tuna … Japanese natto is not only used with rice, but can also be eaten with bread and pasta.
You can find these dish in every restaurant in Japan, however, if you just have a chance to try ones, try it in Mito, Ibaraki which is known as the Natto Capital or in food chains such as Matsu-ya, Ootoya, Kabe no Ana…
Of course, to appreciate this very nutritious and distinctive dish, you need to past what is called “smell”. Some say it stinks, even like stinking feet.
However, if you get used to the smell, you will definitely have to be addicted to this dish. If you have a crush on Natto and want to have other recipes to try, come to Japan and be sure to fully enjoy it!