It doesn’t get much healthier than fermented soybeans for breakfast.
Do you want to eat a wholesome breakfast? Then you may want to look to at the Japanese diet for inspiration. A traditional Japanese breakfast has a variety small dishes of prepared food such as rice, miso soup, pickles and fish and Natto. If you haven’t heard of Natto before then let me tell you it’s packed full of protein and vitamins. Even by Japanese standards Natto is a healthy choice and it is considered a health food. The Japanese say Natto is good for your stomach because it contains a healthy bacteria like yogurt. However a lot of people in the West don’t enjoy taste of Natto. However are you eating Natto like the Japanese? You don’t need to be a master chef to prepare Natto for breakfast but there are a few things you can do to make Natto taste better. We have some great tips how you can enjoy Natto.
If Natto is really healthy then why don’t more people eat it?
The smell of Natto can send people running.
Firstly, the smell can be off putting. Although in recent years Natto companies use strains of bacteria which causes less smell than previous strains. However if your buying from a small local business then they might be using strains of bacteria which can smell like ammonia. You can imagine the smell of ammonia isn’t exactly appetizing. Most of the Natto which is made today has less smell than previously. For me I think smells kinda nutty.
Natto really is slimy
Natto is so foreign looking that some people are completely grossed out by the appearance. I must admit it isn’t exactly pretty to look at someone eating Natto. The bacteria in the Natto form thin strands that seem to stick to everything. Japanese quite enjoy the texture of Natto, however slimy food in the West is not the common. However don’t let that put you off, Natto tastes great.
In this article you can find out how the Japanese eat their Natto for Breakfast and why it’s so healthy.
Table of contents:
- Why is Natto so healthy?
- How to eat Natto for breakfast the Japanese way.
- The correct way to prepare breakfast Natto.
Why eat Natto for breakfast?
Natto contains a lot of Protein
Beans are a great source of protein which unless you have a traditional cooked English Breakfast is often missing from Western breakfasts. A full English breakfast may have a lot of protein but it also has a lot of fat in bacon and sausages. Natto however contains a whole heap of protein without the saturated fats so it’s a much healthier option. It’s quick and easy to prepare only taking seconds and you don’t need to have rice with it although most Japanese Eat Natto with a bowl of rice.
Look to Natto if you want a great source of Vitamin K
As mentioned earlier Natto contains a lot of vitamin K. Please be aware I have no medical training so please see your local dietitian or General practitioner for advice. Natto is full of Vitamin K, in fact per 100 grams of Natto very few foods come close.
Vitakin K may help heel wounds and be good for you bones. Some say Natto can slowdown the effects aging.
How is Natto eaten for breakfast?
Ask five Englishmen how to make a cup a tea and you’ll probably get five different answers. However Natto is often enjoyed with a cup of green tea and a bowl of rice.
Natto is best served cold or at room temperature. Japanese do not eat Natto heated like we eat beans in the West.
How to prepare Natto for breakfast?
Natto couldn’t be simpler to prepare. In true Japanese fashion Natto comes in single servings and with individual sauces to accompany it. Although these sauces vary depending on the brand of Natto. Usually however a packet of Natto contains two packets of sauce ij a traditional container of Natto the first is Japanese Mustard and the other is a special Natto sauce which consists of Dashi and soy sauce.
First: open the box and remove the packets of sauce.
Second: Remove plastic covering the Natto. Lift and quickly rotate to remove the strings from Natto.
Third: Mix Natto with chop sticks. The natto will quickly goes stringy this is a good sign.
Fourth: Open and add the small packet of mustard and sauce.
Finally: Mix mustard and sauce in with the Natto.
Check your local supermarket for Natto.
If you have Natto at your local supermarket why not give it a go for breakfast. You’ll most likely find it in the refrigerated section. Natto needs to be stored in the fridge otherwise is goes bad very quickly. Just like yogurt there are active bacteria in Natto. Don’t let this put you off. This is good bacteria and benefial to your health. It gives you a lot of energy ready for you to start the day. You can buy Natto from Amazon if you cant find it in your local supermarket.
I would also recommend trying the different Natto brands. Different companies that make Natto add different sauces and some companies use different size beans. If you haven’t eaten Natto before I would recommend the standard size. The larger sized beans can take bit of getting used to. Although I’ve heard the larger beans are even healthier. Some companies sell Natto which the beans have been de-skinned and cut into small pieces. This style of Natto tends to be really mushy so I’d stick to the standard size.
Natto is an acquired taste. Some people will love it while others can’t stand the sight of it. Or at least the smell. To be honest I think image of Natto being really smell comes from years ago when companies used natural strains of bacteria. Today Natto is a lot less smelly although that stigma remains.
Natto is very high in Vitamin K and very few foods come close to Natto for the amount of Vitamin K per 100 grams. Natto which is really fermented soybeans is also high in protein and much lower in sugar than a standard Western breakfast.
Are you one of the people that loves Natto? If you’ve never tried it give it a go.