Natto is fermented soybeans. It is a Japanese dish. They have it with rice for breakfast… I’ve heard… I’ve never been to Japan so far but when I discovered natto in Bangkok groceries I became an unconditional. I have been surprised to learn about the bioavailability of K2 in natto. The vitamin K2 is normally only available in animal products but can also be synthetised by a healthy gut flora in small quantities. In 100 gr of natto you find 1 103,4 µg (microgram) of K2. The second food with highest content of K2 is foie gras with 369 µg. K2 activates blood clotting and plays an important role as protector of coronary diseases (by preventing calcium deposition on arteries for example instead of bones). It has a role in cancer prevention, inflammation, atherosclerosis and mortality in general. On the other hand, nattokinase, an enzyme only developped in fermented soybeans, degrades the fibrin, a protein which also has a blood clotting role. That way, nattokinase improves the thrombolytic activity. The reduction of blood pressure with nattokinase has been confirmed. Furthermore, nattokinase could degrade amyloid plaques in the brain of persons suffering from Alzheimer disease. Wow!
Ok, the smell is particular, the taste also and the “cheesy” filaments developped during fermentation may repulse some of you. Either you like it or not, not in middle. It is a dish with character! I am a fervent of fermentation for years and this natto is simply delicious and savory to me. Give it a try! For breakfast 😉
Ingredients: 2 cups of organic soybeans, 1 ts natto starter (Bacillus Subtilus), 4 TBS water. I bought my natto starter here but you can find other sellers on Amazon.
-Soak the 2 cups of soybeans for at least 12 hours.
-Rinse them well and cook for at least 6 hours in a Dutch oven or similar pan and refill regularly with water.
-Once cooked, drain and pour in a big oven recipient very well cleaned and rinsed. The layer of the beans should not exceed 2 cm.
-In a separate small bowl, mix one tsp (use a wood of plastic spoon please) of natto starter (Bacillus Subtilus) with 3 or 4 TBSP of water.
-Once the beans are still warm but not hot anymore, pour your Bacillus Subtilus onto the beans and again, with a wood or plastic spoon, mix evenly on all the batch of beans.
-Cover with a cheesecloth, maintain the cloth with paper clips or any other trick you find so the cloth doesn’t touch the beans.
-Cover the cloth with aluminium to avoid the beans from drying too much inside the oven.
-Put the beans in the oven at 40°C without fan for 24 hours. I use an oven thermomether to have a better idea of the real temperature. I have to put mine on 70°C in order to have 35/40°C inside the oven.
-After 15 hours, you can have a look and mix a little bit with the wood spoon.
-After 20 hours, mix every hour.
-When the filaments are well developed (after 20 to 24 hours) prepare their storage.
-Clean and rinse very well several small glasses recipients with lid and divide the natto in the quantity you want. I like to store maximum 100 gr per pot.
-Let them all rest in the fridge overnight before consuming.
-Freeze what you not eat in the week.
Always use wood or plastic spoon to serve any fermented food, avoiding metal which will oxidize the food.
Tell me if it worked and if you like it.