Home Forums Fermentation Questions and Information Making Rice Vinegars – First post from Delaware

This topic contains 5 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by dana dana 1 week, 5 days ago.

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  • #2037
    dana
    dana
    Participant
    Points: 124

    I’ve been fermenting and experimenting with fermentation for about 1 year now. One thing that has stymied me is making rice vinegar and brown rice vinegar. The one recipe I’ve found calls for adding to water in which rice has been soaked 1/4 cup sugar/cup of soaking water and 1/4 cup yeast/soaking water. Although I’ve placed the mix in 1-gallon jars (using only 3 cups of soaking water), it totally overflowed the jar. Tried this with both white and brown rice, with same result. It seems to me that the amounts of both sugar and yeast are too much for that volume of water. Can anyone provide some advice? Appreciate it.

    • This topic was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by fermenTed fermenTed.
    • This topic was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by fermenTed fermenTed.
    #2045
    fermenTed
    fermenTed
    Keymaster
    Points: -1 590

    Hi Dana, I moved your post to the Fermentation Questions and Information section of the forum so others might spot it more easily and respond there.

    I’ll dig into this topic a little myself as I too am curious about making rice vinegars. So far, I’ve just made more than my fair share of kombucha vinegar and also some apple cider vinegar.

    thanks,
    ted

    #2048
    dana
    dana
    Participant
    Points: 124

    Thanks, Ted. I’ve made Kombucha vinegar twice. (Not too crazy about Kombucha itself so probably won’t make another batch even though they turned out well). I always have lots of homemade apple cider vinegar ready, and one in the making.
    Recently, I was told that making brown rice miso would yield a liquid that would be or could be turned into brown rice vinegar. This involves the usual Koji starter mixed with cooked brown rice. Right now I have a batch of chickpea miso “cooking”. When it’s finished will try the brown rice.

    Dana

    #2049
    fermenTed
    fermenTed
    Keymaster
    Points: -1 590

    Anything more you’d care to share about fermentation get the rice vinegar? What kind of yeast were you using? anything else you’ve learned?

    #2050
    dana
    dana
    Participant
    Points: 124

    Ted,
    In my latest rice vinegar experiment, where I added yeast and sugar to rice soaking water and it boiled over, I used regular baking yeast. When I ferment (successfully) sweet rice, I use one crushed Chinese Yeast Ball to 2 cups cooked sweet rice. This yields a good amount (about 3-4 cups) sweet rice alcohol. On my list of things to try, are using the Chinese Yeast Ball on cooked brown rice to see if it performs the same. I may have to add some sugar, but will try without it at first.

    My current rice vinegar experiment has been filtered once after the bubbling stopped, per the instructions, and it’s now sitting/aging in a 1 gallon, closed jar. It has a yeasty tan color, and smells more like tangy yeast with a sl vinegary aroma, but not unpleasant. The instructions say to filter into a new clean jar every 5 days or so. Not sure anything will come out of this, but I’ll keep it going.

    My well tested sweet rice alcohol (Jiu Niang) recipe is the standard one:
    1. Soak 2 cups sweet Chinese rice for 4-6 hours (not sushi, jasmine, or regular rice). Easily available in Asian markets). Discard soaking water. Rinse rice briefly in cold water. Drain
    2. Cook rice in your standard method — i.e., steamer, boil in pot, pressure cooker etc. Rinse cooked rice briefly in cool water and drain for about 30-60 sec.
    3. In clean, non-metallic, mixing bowl (all utensils and bowls from this point forward should be well washed and rinsed before using, including lids), add 1 or 2 crushed Chinese yeast balls. I have tried with both amounts, and find that using two balls yields a quicker, more pungent alcohol, but my preference is using one ball because it yields a smoother alcohol.
    4. When the rice temp is about 90-100 degrees F, mix the rice and yeast thoroughly, making sure that the yeast is well dispersed.
    5. Transfer the mix to glass or plastic containers with tight covers. Make a small well in the center of the container for the alcohol to collect as it forms. I find that with two yeast balls, the alcohol forms so rapidly that it just floats the rice, which is OK. The alcohol liquid will be noticeable in 2-4 days, sometimes in 24 hrs. depending on the ambient temperature. Once the liquid appears, stir the mix every other day or so and re-cover quickly.
    6. From here on the steps are your personal preference. You can transfer the mix to the refrigerator where it will continue to ferment but very slowly, and use or eat the mix as wanted. You can freeze it. I prefer to strain/press off the liquid using a fine sieve, and bottle it. I then use the drained rice, which at this point is somewhat mushy and shapeless, in other dishes. It make a great binder in vegan falafel, meatballs etc. I always find a use for it. Of course, if you ferment for only a short time, the the rice texture and shape is more typically rice, and is a nice sweet breakfast dish, as many Chinese eat it.
    Note: I buy a big bag of Chinese yeast balls (one is about 7/8″ in diameter) and store them in the freezer. When needed, I remove one (or two), put in a plastic sandwich bag, give it a few whacks with a small rolling pin or kraut tamper, and then roll it to a fine powder.
    7. Time frames: with one yeast ball, I let it ferment about 3 days, then refrigerate; with two yeast balls I let it go about 5 days then bottle the liquid and use the rice elsewhere. Again, your preference reigns.
    8, I use two Pyrex glass bowls for the fermenting mix (with tightfitting covers). Have tried soft plastic, but find that fermentation is more potent in glass. This could be because the plastic is somewhat porous and “breathes”.

    Finally, I have not found a good explanation of which or what kinds of yeast are in Chinese yeast balls, as opposed to our usual baking yeast. Does anyone know?

    #2275
    dana
    dana
    Participant
    Points: 124

    Ted,
    I now have made two batches of miso: a chickpea miso that was ready after 3-4 weeks, and a brown rice miso that was ready in 5 weeks because I added 1 tbsp. unpasturized miso that I had bought. (This gives the fermentation a boost.) For both I used a purchased brown rice koji. I had read that brown rice miso would yield a liquid layer that was brown rice vinegar, but did not find that. There was a copious liquid layer in the brown rice miso but it didn’t taste like brown rice vinegar. For each, I used a hand blender stick to make a “bumpy” paste, which is the way I prefer it — after first scraping off the light surface growth. Of the two, I think I prefer the chickpea miso taste, but maybe I rushed the brown rice miso. Next time I’ll try leaving it longer.

    For both, I cut back slightly on the amount of salt used. Have frozen most of what I produced and keep two small containers refrigerated to use.

    Am looking forward to your future articles on miso.

    Dana

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