Yellow soy: benefits and how to use it

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Joe Dispenza

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Yellow soy it is a legume from which foods such as tofu, tempeh, soy sauce and miso are obtained.

Let's find out what are the properties of yellow soy and how it is used for human consumption.


Yellow soy: origin and properties

Once upon a time there yellow soy it was grown only in the Far East, where it represented one of the pillars of nutrition. Since the eighteenth century, soybean cultivation has also spread to Europe and the United States and is still used today for feeding livestock; in recent times, yellow soy has also become part of our diet.

The consumption of yellow soy has in fact grown a lot in recent years: from this legume we obtain various processed foods, including milk, tofu, burgers, sauces and fermented products.

Today we can find numerous yellow soy foods both in natural food shops and supermarkets; many of these foods can also be prepared at home starting from hulled soybeans.

The spread of soy-based foods has grown mainly due to the increase in consumption of products free of ingredients of animal origin, therefore suitable for supplying proteins in the diets of vegetarians and vegans.

I soy beans in fact, they contain about 50% of proteins, in addition to 17-20% of fats, 12_25% of carbohydrates, 10% of fibers and a good quantity of vitamins and minerals, including calcium, phosphorus, iron and magnesium.

When soy is consumed in bean form, it must be left to soak for 24-48 hours e cooked for a long time preferably after having it peeled: thanks to soaking, long cooking and removing the peel, the anti-nutritional factors contained in soy beans and many other legumes are removed.


Yellow soy products: unfermented foods

Numerous products are obtained from yellow soybeans that can be divided into fermented and unfermented foods. The latter include soy milk, tofu and sprouts.

Soy milk is prepared from soy beans: the beans are left to soak, peel off and cook in water. When cooked, they are blended in the water to obtain the soy milk; the solid part (the okara) it is recovered after filtering the milk and used for prepare fillings and meatballs. Instead, soy milk is consumed as it is, flavored or used in recipes instead of cow's milk.

Tofu, known as “vegetable cheese”, is a well-known food in Japan that is obtained by curdling the proteins contained in soy milk. To obtain the precipitation of proteins, nigari, calcium or magnesium sulfate, vinegar or lemon juice are used. The tofu is then recovered by filtration and pressed. Tofu can also be flavored, mixing it with herbs and spices, smoked, enriched with other ingredients or marinated.

The soybean sprouts are finally obtained by sprouting the soybeans in a sprouter or in a simple glass jar: to sprout the seeds it is sufficient to keep them moist for a few days, rinsing them every three hours and avoiding the water stagnating. After 5-6 days they can be consumed in salads: they are rich in nutrients, provide enzymes, vitamins, minerals and essential amino acids and are easily digestible.

In addition to these foods, a flour is obtained from soy as a waste product from oil production, which is used to prepare burgers and meatballs that we find on the market: the "soy meat"Is the poorest of the soy derivatives and does not have a particularly interesting nutritional profile.


Soy-based products: fermented foods

They are also obtained from soy fermented foods, including shoyu sauce, tamari, tempeh and miso.

Lo shoyu it is a sauce made from the fermentation of soy beans, wheat, water and salt: it is one tasty sauce rich in vitamins, enzymes, enzymes and yeasts. If of good quality, in addition to flavoring any type of savory dish, it also brings precious nutrients to the body: however, be careful not to exceed in consumption, as it contains salt and the use of salt should always be limited.

Tamari sauce is another fermented sauce made from soy: unlike shoyu it does not contain wheat and is more salty.

Miso instead it is a fermented product from soy beans, cereals and salt; it is a food rich in proteins, minerals, vitamins and enzymes. It looks like a dense paste with a very variable color and flavor depending on the cereal used, the spices added and the duration of fermentation. It is generally used to season and flavor soups, vegetables, legumes.

Tempeh is another fermented food made from yellow soybeans rich in protein which is used for the preparation of main courses, instead of meat. Compared to the flours used to prepare "soy meat", tempeh is a food with an excellent nutritional profile. In addition to soy beans, it can be obtainedand also from the fermentation of other legumes and it is also possible to ferment the grains of cereals together with the beans to improve the amino acid supply of the finished product.



Homemade tofu: here's the recipe


To learn more:

> Vegetable protein supplements, what they are and when to take them




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