Used as a seasoning or an ingredient in the miso soup. In the Edo period, there was a “natto seller” who sells this like an instant miso soup. Consequently, it was the mainstream way of eating than Nattou Gohan. You can find this one still in the Tohoku region.
This is a local cuisine from some areas of Kochi prefecture. Sprinkle natto with salt and bran and fry in an iron pan. You can also find this dish in Kameoka City, Kyoto Prefecture, and the Makuni River basin in Wakayama Prefecture.
A dish of minced chicken fried in sesame oil, ginger, and garlic mixed with natto and tabasco as a secret ingredient. Some locals from central Tottori prefecture make this dish as a school lunch.
A thin roll of sushi with vinegared rice on top of seaweed and natto wrapped around it. The recipes for nattou maki are sushi rice, seaweed, and Kewpie pasta sauce. You can make one by firstly mixing the pasta sauce and ingredients. Secondly, Spread the wrap on the makisu, cut it in half, and spread half the amount of sushi rice. Thirdly, Place half the amount of 1 in 2 and roll it all at once. Make another one in the same way. Fourthly, Place three cuts into six equal parts in a bowl.
It is one of the typical ways to eat even today. Nattou Gohan was popular during the Edo period. However, there is also etiquette when eating this one. Don’t eat the natto when it is still on top of the rice. When heated, it will destroy the nattokinase. Nattokinase is its enzyme and has the important effect of smoothing the blood. To get this effect, locals recommended eating the rice and nattou separately.
Soboro Nattou (そぼろ納豆)
It is a traditional Mito side dish that is made by combining nattou with dried daikon radish and seasoning it with soy sauce. In the old days, each home makes this one, so it had its flavor.
Hoshi Nattou (干し納豆)
It is a traditional dish of dried seasoned nattou. Since the nattou is adequately dried, you can easily enjoy the taste. The saltiness of the natto enhances the taste of the dish. The more you chew, the more the flavor of natto spreads.
Nattou Mochi (納豆餅)
There are many ways to eat mochi, but in Yamagata, nattou mochi is a must-see. Many households make this dish in the prefecture and lining it up in supermarkets’ side dish section. They will soak the steamed glutinous rice in water and serve it afterward. They don’t want it to get sticky because of the high moisture content, so they have to adjust the time depending on the day’s weather. If they don’t do that, the finished product will be different.
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF EATING NATTO?
Natto is one of the healthy Japanese food of Japan. It is rich in vitamin K and soybean-derived protein, which is essential for making blood coagulation factors and is a high-quality protein source. Dietary fiber is abundant at 4.9-7.6 grams in 100 grams. Dietary fiber is a useful component to help keep bowel movements regular.
The obesity tendency of Japanese people is accelerating. To prevent obesity, you should try to avoid an overdose of high-fat diets and snacks, and at the same time, exercise moderately. At the same time, it is best to eat foods that have a dieting effect. Many foods prevent obesity, one of which is natto. Furthermore, by combining natto with some foods, the taste becomes even more delicious, and various health effects will show.
Soy protein in natto has the function of suppressing fat storage, increasing the thyroid hormone activity that promotes fat burning, and preventing excess fat storage. In addition, it increases basal metabolism and increases the amount of energy burned even in a resting state. In other words, it is the soy protein contained in natto that has a “thinning effect” just by eating it.
Bacillus probiotics are useful to prevent inflammatory responses in the intestine while also strengthening the gut barrier. It has an antibacterial effect. Before antibiotics, it has the effect of suppressing the growth of dysentery, typhoid fever, pathogenic Escherichia coli, etc. Accordingly, it is also a treatment for abdominal pain and diarrhea.
WHAT OTHER COUNTRIES HAVE NATTO AS THEIR DISH?
Natto is not only made in various parts of Japan but also in foreign countries. There are different names from different countries. They have “Toushi” in China, “Toanau” in Thailand, “Papo” in Myanmar, and “Dawadawa” in Africa. However, the stickiness is different from that of Japan. It seems that they prepared it as seasonings and as a preserved food.
IS IT OK TO EAT NATTO EVERYDAY?
Natto consumption is generally safe for most people. Nevertheless, it contains vitamin K1, which has blood-thinning properties. For this reason, individuals already taking blood-thinning medication should seek advice from their doctor before adding it to their diets.
IS CONSUMING FERMENTED FOOD SAFE?
Fermented foods are rich in probiotic bacteria, so by consuming fermented foods, you add beneficial bacteria and enzymes to your overall intestinal flora, increasing the health of your gut microbiome and digestive system and enhancing the immune system.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU EAT FERMENTED FOODS?
Researchers and studies say that you should often eat fermented foods from two to three servings of fermented foods per day.
RECOMMENDED RESTAURANTS THAT SERVES NATTO
This store is a natto specialty store that is rare in Japan. Sendai-ya offers all-you-can-eat natto at eat-in. You should know that some radios feature this store often. There are eight types in this shop; small, large, groat, edamame, sesame, wakame, hijiki, and millet.
Hakata Food Park Nattoya Sticky Land (Fukuoka)
Hakata Food Park is Japan’s first authentic natto restaurant that has been in business for 25 years. Located in Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City, there are many creative natto dishes in Japanese, Western and Chinese. From natto croquettes to pizzas, cakes, and shrimp mayo. It is a well-known store featured on TV often.
Located along an alley a little away from Iidabashi Station is a shop for natto lovers. Natto Shokudo is open as a cafeteria that serves natto set meals during the day and at night where you can drink sake with natto as a pinch. The shop’s natto set meal includes two side dishes, two natto pickles, rice, miso soup for ¥750. This shop is particular with their rice and miso, so its price is worth your stomach. Right now, the shop is currently not available.
Sansui Mito is quite famous for its unique Natto dishes. It ranges from a feast set meal of ¥3,300 to a dried natto rice cake of ¥620. They use natto made from small-sized local soybeans.
It seems like if you see Natto for the first time, you would think that it is dirty food. It is not rotten but is a food made by fermenting soybeans. You are decomposing the microorganisms by the method of rotting and fermenting the food. However, the difference between rotting and fermenting is whether humans eat what is the food after decomposing the microorganisms. If it is harmful or good for the body. Fermented foods include cheese, yogurt, and miso.
There are many beliefs and recommendations about how many fermented foods you should eat. Some people say to eat them many times a day, and others a few times a week. Your goal might be to get some fermented foods in your diet now and then — to acquire a taste and improve your health.