Fresh kuromame just popped out of the shell presents beautiful smooth and shiny appearance. The shape of the beans is an ordinary, slightly oblong bean-shape like the ones of fresh edamame green soybeans. But when it is dried, it becomes perfect round shape. This is magical to me. Here is teh kuromame recipe.
I cook the beans with my special egg shaped iron ball. When you do not have this special ball, you can use old nail, but please wrap it up in a cheese cloth, so that you can spot it and remove it without hurting yourself and your family after cooking the beans. The color of anthocyanin, when it contacts with iron, stabilized and produces appealing dark purple color.
10 ounce dried kuromame (easy to purchase it on line; remember my selection)
8 cups water
Iron egg or old nail
7 ounce sugar
2 tablespoons shoyu (soy sauce)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Rinse the beans in a sieve under running cold tap water. Drain the beans. In a large pot add the beans, water and an iron egg or old nail. Put the pot over medium heat and bring it to a boil. On boiling add the remaining ingredients and gently stir. After the sugar dissolved, turn off the heat, cover it with a lid and leave it for 5 hours.
Put the pot over medium heat and bring it to a simmer. Remove white foams which float on top of the pot. Add 1/2 cup of water and bring it to a simmer again. Turn the heat to very low, drop an otoshibuta (wooden drop lid) or an parchment paper which was cut a slightly smaller than the size of the pot) inside the pot, cover with a lid and cook the beans for 4 to 5 hours (until tender). During the cooking do not open the lid, nor stir the beans. After cooking the beans transfer them with a cooking liquid into a container and leave the beans in the refrigerator overnight. Next day you are rewarded with silky, sleek, plump, tender and delicious beans which you cannot stop on snacking! Enjoy them at room temperature.