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Culturing Koji at Home

By: Karin Cho

Koji is a beloved fungus in Japanese cuisine because of its role in producing sake, miso, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and many more umami-packed ingredients. Koji belongs to the Aspergillus genus, but unlike some of its toxic cousins, Koji does not produce aflatoxin, making it safe to consume (3).

Recently, many chefs have experimented with using koji in novel ways, such as the koji-encrusted pork by Chef Jeremy Umansky of Larder: A Curated Delicatessen & Bakery. Traditionally, koji is used primarily to ferment grains and soybeans, but curious chefs have shown that these fungi can boost the

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