A great place to make soba near Misawa
Next to Misawa Air Base, Tonami-an offers a class on making handmade soba noodles (teuchi-soba). I recently took the class, located in Tohoku-machi, which ends with participants getting a chance to taste their handmade noodles. The wonderful buckwheat flavor and chewy texture was delicious!
The soba master, Mr. Juuichi Sato, who holds a 4-dan grade (the highest is 5-dan) and is the highest grade holder in Aomori Prefecture, kindly showed how to make beautiful soba noodles. Mr. Sato gives useful one-on-one advice during the class.
About 15 years ago, he visited a soba-making trial by chance, and was hooked immediately. According to Mr. Sato, the more you make soba, the better you get. He has been instructing at Tonami-an about for nine years and would like to continue as long as possible.
The following steps are the keys to making soba:
1. Mizu-mawashi – combine buckwheat flour and a very little additive such as wheat flour in a mixing bowl. Slowly add water and shape it into a ball, which is called soba-dama. The water should be around 45% of the flour amount.
3. Noshi – roll out the soba-dama to form a thin and flat round shape, before cutting it into a rectangle. The size of the round shape should be about 60 cm in diameter, while the rectangle should be 100 cm on a diagonal line.
4. Kiri – fold the dough in half twice to make it a 1/4 rectangular shape and cut it about 2 mm thick with the special knife for soba.
* The steps take about 40 minutes including the cleanup.
* Anyone interested in soba-making can contact Kazuko at email@example.com