June 22, 2016

Making Low-Salt Umeboshi, Days 2 and 3/低塩梅干し作り、2、3日目

First, ume syrup on Day 2:
The 40% sugar had already gone. I decided to add another 5% (125 g) sugar.
40%の砂糖はすでになくなっていました。さらに5%(125 g)足すことにしました。 
I used a large spoon to dissolve the sugar.

Hours later, I found that the sugar had been dissolved completely. No sugar left at the bottom of the containers. So, I added another 5% (10% in total). Thus, the ume and sugar ratio is now 1:0.5.
I tasted the ume syrup, and was disappointed by the lack of acidity. Because the ume were riper than the previous ones???

Day 3: Some sugar left at the bottom.
I tasted it again, and was pleasantly surprised to see that it was sour, as sour as the previous one. A drastic change in just one day (half a day, to be exact).
また味見しましたが、酸っぱくて、前のと同じくらい酸っぱくて驚きました。 たった一日(正確には半日)で劇的な変化です。

Now to the main topic:

Day 2:
All the ume are now yellowish, producing bubbles.

Day 3:
Yesterday (Day 2), I called my father to ask some questions about his recipe, so I could start drying the ume today (Day 3). I learned that his previous description of his recipe was partially inaccurate. Here is an accurate description of his recipe:

Ingredients: 10 kg (yes, you read that right! 10 kg!) ripe ume suitable for umeboshi
5% (500 g) salt

2 kg (20%) sugar
Small amount of 35% shochu (Japanese distilled spirit)
Optional: Aka jiso (red perilla)

(0. Wash, remove the heta from each ume, wash again.)
1. Put ume in a container. Add salt. Add enough water to cover the ume. Leave for 5 days.
2. Drain the ume (dispose of the liquid), and dry in the sun for 3-4 days.
3. Return to the container, add sugar, shochu, and red liquid*1 from aka jiso.
(The time for which to leave the ume in the container is not specified.)
*1 My father told me to "add the liquid". A common way is to rinse red perilla with water, rub with salt, rinse again, rub with salt again, squeeze, and add the perilla, not the liquid.

材料:梅干しに適した、熟した梅 10 kg(間違いではないです、10 kg!)
塩 5%(500 g)

砂糖 2 kg(20%)
35%の焼酎 少量
赤紫蘇(あかじそ) 省略可

(0. 梅を洗い、ヘタを取り、再度洗う。)
1. 梅を容器に入れる。塩を入れる。梅がかぶるよう水を入れる。5日間置いておく。
2. 水を切り(液は捨てる)、3~4日間日干しする。
3. 容器に戻し、砂糖、焼酎、赤紫蘇の液*1を入れる。
*1 父は「液を入れる」と言っていました。一般的な方法は、赤紫蘇を水洗いし、塩でもみ、再度水洗いし、再度塩でもみ、液でなく、赤紫蘇を入れるというものです。

To be continued.


ErinBear said...

Dear Hiroyuki,

Oh no - will it be usable? You went to so much work. I hope it will be okay.

Best wishes,
Erin from California

Hiroyuki said...

ErinBear: I think so. Today is Day 5, and I will start drying the ume in the sun, although it will be cloudy all day today.