A few weeks ago we showed you the first steps in making Soy Sauce. Our story was based on the washing and steaming of the Soy Bean after which the product was placed in containers and left to sit for two days which is the time needed for the bacteria to activate. After the two days, the soy bean is ready for fermentation and that’s where we resume our story tonight. Here in Orange Walk 10 Women’s Group are presently cooking and bottling the soy sauce, preparing the product so it can be sold on the Belizean market. So, are you ready to learn how to make Soy Sauce? Then grab a pen and paper as we show you all the steps.
Carmelita Perez- Reporting
All these seven drums contain 50 lbs of soy beans which for the past six months have been fermenting in 55 gallons of purified water and 15 bags of salt. The longer the mixture ferments the better the taste of the Soy Sauce. For the past six months these women have been taking care of the drums making sure they are properly sterilized every time the mixture is stirred so as to avoid contamination.
Today the mixture is ready to be converted into Soy Sauce and we start off by taking out some of the soy liquid from each drum after which it is prepared for cooking. The moment the soy mixture is placed on the fire to cook it has to be stirred constantly to avoid burning; this will also give the Soy Sauce a better taste.
“Vamos a usar 18 kilogramos de soya ya fermentado eso es lo que estamos cocinando. Esto lo vamos a dividir para cocinarlo entre los dos. Vamos a usar 27 kilos de agua para los 18 kilos de soya que tenemos.”
After the water is poured into the soy mixture, it is time to put some color into the product. And that’s where 420 grams of black coloring comes in. After the coloring is weighed it is set aside and the procedure continues.
“Vamos a mesclar la 70 gramos de Pectina que es para engruesarlo un poco y el Sodio Benzoato que es para que dure más el producto es un preservativo.
After the mixture reaches a boiling point the black coloring is poured in. One point seven kilos of brown sugar along with 250 grams of D-Sodium are combined and also poured into the cooking product. The sugar is used to reduce saltines while the D-Sodium is used to add flavor to the soy.
Pectin and Sodium Benzoate are mixed with some of the boiling liquid which is then blended and poured into the mixture. After all the ingredients are in and the soy mixture has cooked for approximately thirty minutes, it is then removed from the fire and placed to cool. The mixture is then strained to extract all residues and then it is bottled and ready to be sold on the Belizean market.
Mellisa Balam- Agricultural Department Corozal
“Normally here in Belize people would prefer not eat too much salt due to their health conditions and this Soy Sauce here the salt content is a little bit lower that the normal Soy Sauce that you would find in the market. This is more of a pure less salty Soy Sauce and it has less preservatives and it is more nutritional. This is actual Soy Sauce and bottle that will be introduced in the supermarkets so this is what Belizeans should be looking forward.”
Today when we spoke to some of the women in the different groups they told us they are ready to start doing business.
Alva Castillo- San Antonio Women’s Group
“Si estamos animados en independizarnos por eso estamos trabajando como grupo. Esto nos va a ayudar en muchas formas pro ejemplo financieramente.”
Carlota Castillo- Santa Cruz Women’s Group
“Como grupo pensamos trabajar y seguir adelante. Yo pienso que si en el negocio nos va bien eso nos va a beneficiar en el grupo y también a nuestra familia.”
Eliza Cruz- San Felipe Women’s Group
“Yo pienso que es para prosperar y nos va a ayudar con la familia porqué es para que uno se ayude y así ayudar a otros así que nosotros vamos a continuar con el negocio.”
The bottled product lasts from 8 to 12 months. The Ministry of Agriculture with the assistance of the Taiwan Government is presently carrying out a survey to seek markets for the Soy Sauce. After the survey is conducted the product will be introduced into the local market.