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Gluten-free Miso
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Hi guys. Anyone hear of a commercially available gluten-free miso? I'm not sure I'll eat it (waiting for Enterolab on my soy thing), but since it is fermented, it's not BAD soy, like most of it. BUT...it's traditionally made from barley, so most companies make a barley variety, thus, in my mind, making their equipment unsuitable to make nonbarley kind w/o having any gluten in it.

Any thoughts?

Anyone make their own miso?

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I've never had problems with miso made from 100% daizo or with hacho miso from Nagoya. Usuallyhave to bring it from Japan though. Even here in Hawaii where there are many choices for miso I cant find one without mugi in it.

Hi guys. Anyone hear of a commercially available gluten-free miso? I'm not sure I'll eat it (waiting for Enterolab on my soy thing), but since it is fermented, it's not BAD soy, like most of it. BUT...it's traditionally made from barley, so most companies make a barley variety, thus, in my mind, making their equipment unsuitable to make nonbarley kind w/o having any gluten in it.

Any thoughts?

Anyone make their own miso?

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I've never had problems with miso made from 100% daizo or with hacho miso from Nagoya. Usuallyhave to bring it from Japan though. Even here in Hawaii where there are many choices for miso I cant find one without mugi in it.

Hi guys. Anyone hear of a commercially available gluten-free miso? I'm not sure I'll eat it (waiting for Enterolab on my soy thing), but since it is fermented, it's not BAD soy, like most of it. BUT...it's traditionally made from barley, so most companies make a barley variety, thus, in my mind, making their equipment unsuitable to make nonbarley kind w/o having any gluten in it.

Any thoughts?

Anyone make their own miso?

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I'm not quite ready to post on it but a friend made miso for me and is now in the process of ordering the koji for me. When it comes in she's going to give me the recipie and maybe teach me how to make it. It may be a while, but I'll post on it when I have more info to share. Sorry it's not more helpful right now.

I also bought quinoa miso in Japan from a company that specializes in products free of allergens. I don't believe that they ship to the U.S. but you can have it shipped to someone in country and then have them ship it to you. Not a viable option for most I'm sure.

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The quiona miso is not bad. Same place as quinoa soy sauce which is really good too.

In my 30's I had bottles of sake left at friends restaurants around Tokyo.

In my 40's I had bottles of shochu left at friends restaurants around Tokyo.

In my 50's I had bottles of gluten free shoyu and miso left at friends restaurants around Tokyo!

Times sure do change!

I'm not quite ready to post on it but a friend made miso for me and is now in the process of ordering the koji for me. When it comes in she's going to give me the recipie and maybe teach me how to make it. It may be a while, but I'll post on it when I have more info to share. Sorry it's not more helpful right now.

I also bought quinoa miso in Japan from a company that specializes in products free of allergens. I don't believe that they ship to the U.S. but you can have it shipped to someone in country and then have them ship it to you. Not a viable option for most I'm sure.

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We make miso with Shinshu Shiro Miso paste (bought at the Asian grocery, sold in little tubs or packets in the refrigerator section). The only ingredients are soybean, rice, and salt. We add to this a broth made from hon-dashi powder (ingredients: salt, msg, lactose, sugar, dried bonito tuna powder, disodium inosinate, bonito extract, yeast, extract, disodium succinate--lotsa chemicals, yuck, but no gluten).

If you want to skip the chemicals, you could use vegetable broth, or you could make shrimp shell broth: save the shells from when you shell your shrimp before cooking. Add them to 2 cups water and 1 cup rice wine, and boil til shells turn pink. Strain and enjoy.

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Thanks all!

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I believe chickpea miso is gluten free. Kind of hard to find though. I had to order it online and then I found that I don't like it.

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I reread your original post, and saw that you said most miso is traditionally made from barley?

Does that refer to miso made from powdered mixes, or to the real thing? Most Japanese (people and restaurants) make miso from miso paste (which is fermented soybeans, rice, and salt), not from the powdered mixes And I haven't seen barley listed on miso paste ingredients--are they leaving it off the ingredient list?

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I got some trader joes brand instant Miso soup and it definitely did not list barley on the ingredients, and theoretically TJ's will not hide barley.

Weird.

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I believe chickpea miso is gluten free. Kind of hard to find though. I had to order it online and then I found that I don't like it.

Well, that's my answer. I can't have soy either. I have a book with recipes that are supposed to avoid all the major allergens and it uses the chickpea miso. I've been unwilling to order the stuff without knowing what it is like.

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I reread your original post, and saw that you said most miso is traditionally made from barley?

Does that refer to miso made from powdered mixes, or to the real thing? Most Japanese (people and restaurants) make miso from miso paste (which is fermented soybeans, rice, and salt), not from the powdered mixes And I haven't seen barley listed on miso paste ingredients--are they leaving it off the ingredient list?

The koji(yeast) is OFTEN grown on barley and is NOT usually listed as an ingredient. So yes, they are leaving it off the ingredient list. You have to call or contact the company to find out. The miso itself is usually made with soybeans but some miso from certain regions of Japan has barley as an ingredient in the finished product and in that case it would show up on a label.

It is my understanding that MSG in some countries can be derived from gluten sources. On the Triumph dining cards for Japanese it lists MSG in the I Cannot Eat section. Miso is also listed in the I Cannot Eat section for the reasons above.

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I have not had Miso in a long time....

I do however use Bragg's Liquid Amino's not soy sauce.

good luck!

sickchick

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The koji(yeast) is OFTEN grown on barley and is NOT usually listed as an ingredient.

But neither koji nor yeast are listed on the ingredient list.

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But neither koji nor yeast are listed on the ingredient list.

<a href="http://www.soya.be/miso-varieties.php" target="_blank">http://www.soya.be/miso-varieties.php</a>

Yeast is the easiest word that came to mind to translate "koji" but here's one place that explains the process. And yes koji is often not listed, at least in my experience.

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Great site! THanks for posting.

Ah--our miso is white miso--that explains why rice was listed and why barley wasn't--I'm assuming it's safe, but I'll check the other kinds of miso next time I go to the Asian grocery.

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I hope it was helpful. I always assume guilty until proven innocent! ;)

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Here is the response from a company that I contacted.

Re: Gluten‏

From: Deb Duchin (srmiso@southrivermiso.com)

Sent: Mon 11/12/07 12:40 PM

To: Missy's Mom

Missy's Mom -

Thanks for your e-mail.

At South River Miso we make 10 varieties of miso - 8 of them have no gluten ingredients.

However, I should tell you that the culture used in our miso making is originally started on barley, harvested in miniscule portions (and we believe no barley comes away with the culture) and then extended on potato starch. Also the 8 varieties of miso with no gluten ingredients are made in the same building where the barley is made.

I know that there is a whole spectrum of gluten intolerance. For some the above information is of concern; for others it is not. You need to decide for yourself your level of intolerance.

I hope this information helps answer your questions.

Deb

----- Original Message -----

From: Missy's Mom

To: mail@southrivermiso.com

Sent: Friday, November 09, 2007 8:57 AM

Subject: Gluten

I heard about your company through a Japanese friend who makes her own miso with your brown rice koji. I must adhere to a strict gluten-free diet, which means that barley in any form is off limits. I am aware that barley is frequently used in the process of making miso and is an ingredient in the final product at times. Any information about barley, gluten and the possiblility for cross-comtamination in your products as well as miso making supplies, like koji, would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Missy's Mom

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I've been wondering about miso myself, so it's great to see that there's a current thread!

My all-time favorite brand is Miso Master. Their products are utterly delicious, all-organic, and made in the traditional Japanese way. As long as you stay away from their Barley Miso, their products are free from any overt gluten ingredients. HOWEVER, they are aged in large wooden vats, and (as has has often been discussed on this and other celiac forums) it's hard-going-on-impossible to clean all of the gluten out of wood. So unless they have one or more dedicated vats for each flavor, no one could really say for sure whether (or not) there is any barley residue in their nominally non-barley misos.

I have emailed them, and will post their reply here.

I have used their Chickpea Miso, by the way, and really liked it. The flavor is similar to any pale-colored miso. It makes a really good "chicken" broth.

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Just got my Interolab results back, and turns out I am sensitive to soy (don't really eat any, so not a huge concern...but was hoping for the miso). Oh Well!

Thanks to all.

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... I am sensitive to soy (... not a huge concern...but was hoping for the miso).

Well, there's always the Miso Master Chickpea Miso. It's made with rice.

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I'm pretty sure all the misos have soy, and that the rice or barley or chickpea is just the medium. However, I've got an email into the company. Unless you're telling me the packaging says it does not contain soy?

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Well, their web site (Miso Master Chickpea Miso) lists the following ingredients: Organic chickpeas, Organic partially polished brown rice, sun-dried sea salt, well water.

As has already been mentioned, there is the question of trace ingredients in the koji, as well as possible traces of barley miso left in the wooden vats. But the ingredients are both soy-free and gluten-free.

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I just got this reply from Miso Master regarding their Chickpea Miso, as well as their other non-barley misos:

Hi Carol,

In response to your question about gluten and Chickpea miso:

We developed the Miso Master Chickpea Miso with folks in mind who have soy allergy, using chickpeas instead of soybeans, but it is also beneficial for folks who must avoid gluten, since the starter culture is grown on rice. Ingredients are: Organic whole chickpeas, organic handmade rice koji, sun dried sea salt, Blue Ridge Mtn well water, koji spores.

All our misos, with the exception of Country Barley Miso and Mellow Barley Miso, are gluten free as far as the ingredients go. They contain soybeans (except for Chickpea miso, which is soy-free), and a starter called koji, which is grown on rice. The name of the miso denotes the grain on which the koji is grown, therefore Brown Rice miso is actually made from soybeans, koji grown on brown rice, water and salt. In the case of the barley misos, the koji is grown on barley. After the grain is cultured by the koji, it is mixed with the cooked soybeans and placed in large wooden barrels to undergo natural fermentation, resulting in the finished miso.

We do make the barley miso in the same facility as the other miso, however the rice-koji misos and the barley-koji misos are fermented in separate barrels and all the equipment is thoroughly cleaned between uses and maintained to the highest standards. Because the barley miso is made in the same facility as the others, we cannot guarantee there is no cross-contamination, but make every effort to insure there is none.

I hope this gives you the information you need.

Many Thanks

Miss Brett Martin

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I got that email as well. Thanks so much. At my local co-op, they only sell the huge container of the chickpea variety, but the small containers of the others. It is something I'd want to test out - I don't really eat legumes either, but it is fermented, so it should be better than non-fermented.

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