Hoshi Natto: Healthy Dried Fermented Soybean Snack

Natto (納豆) is a superfood made from fermented soybeans packed with nutrients. But it has a slimy consistency and an unpleasant smell, because of which many people can’t eat it. 

In Japan, Mito, a city in Ibaraki Prefecture, is the top producer, and it has a specialty made of Natto called Hoshi Natto (干し納豆: meaning Dried Natto), about which I will talk today.

Hoshi Natto (干し納豆: Dried Natto)

Hoshi Natto or Dried Natto

The dry Natto, Hoshi Natto, is made of Natto coated with salt and wheat flour/Katakuriko flour (Japanese potato starch) dried in the sun.

Features/Taste

The dried Natto is less smelly than regular Natto and has almost no stickiness. So even those who hate fresh Natto can enjoy it.

It is a snack with a salty, savory taste, featuring its pleasantly chewy texture.

In Japan, Hoshi Natto is favored as an Otsumami, going well with alcoholic drinks such as sake and beer. 

Hoshi Natto with Sake or Green Tea

Image: yahoo shopping

Nutrients/Benefits 

As with regular Natto, Hoshi Natto is nutritious, and the good news is that the Natto bacteria, Bacillus subtilis var. natto, is still alive in it.

The Natto snack is a wholesome food with various health benefits, and in several respects, it is superior to fresh Natto.

  • Drying Natto under the sun increases the savory taste and nutritional value and lengthens the expiration date.
  • The dried soybean generally contains about 1.5 times the potassium, 1.8 times the iron, and twice the zinc compared to fresh Natto. Also, it is richer in minerals.

How to Eat/Uses

Natto ChazukeImage: tengunatto.com

Hoshi Natto is a casual snack enjoyed in various ways, and here are some examples.

As Furikake

As the dried Natto snack is umami-rich and moderately salty, some people like to use it as a Furikake, sprinkling over a warm bowl of white rice.

In Ochazuke

The dried beans can be a good garnish for Ochazuke like this. O-Chazuke is a Japanese dish consisting of a bowl of plain rice soaked in hot green tea or a broth, typically garnished with salty or savory toppings.

As Topping

Hoshi Natto is almost neither sticky nor slimy. So the beans can be a good topping in various dishes, including salads, curry, pasta, and pizza.


Tomo

Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

2 Responses

  1. LINDA says:

    I love this Natto product but cant find the nutrional content in english. Japanese Dried Fermented Beans – Hoshi Natto, 70g
    by sasanuma goro shoten. Its on Amazon. Can you help?

    • Tomo says:

      Thank you for the comment.
      As you say, there is no description on nutritional contents on its package, which only says that the dried Natto is made with Natto beans, salt, and wheat flour.
      According to this Japanese website, it seems that the maker, Sasanuma Goro Shoten hasn’t analyzed the nutritional content of their dried Natto. They only say that the Hoshi Natto (70g) has about 140kcal and its salt concentration is less than 7%.

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