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Natto: The Stringy, Slimy, Superfood of Japan

– Okay so, hang on a second. Here’s the dealio. I’m working on an art
project, failed miserably, to do these kind of hand-made title screen for you guys for this
Wednesday wellness segment that I’m working on where I just wanna give some life tips that has helped me through life, time management skills to waking up to dealing with brain fog. And I’m trying to make some kind of interesting opening thing. My first attempt with clay failed. Very sticky, left tons of
markings, it was terrible. My second attempt, drawing
using pastels failed miserably. It looked like a five year old art project and was not impressive at all. The third one I used watercolor,
my brush was too small. And then I was frustrated so I stopped! (depressing music) Now I’m gonna eat some rice. Man, it’s so beautiful, oh yeah. I’m drinking some wine and I’m
gonna crack into this natto. Now, if you guys don’t know what natto is, oh my gosh, it’s like fermented soybeans. And when we used to life in Korea, there was a dish called cheonggukjang and it was just like (speaking
in foreign language). (speaking in foreign language)
is a Korean soybean soup. (projector clicking) Soybean paste. ♪ Special ingredient ♪ ♪ We dilly we ♪ ♪ We dilly we ♪ (upbeat music) (record scratching) It’s just like (speaking
in foreign language). (speaking in foreign language)
is a Korean soybean soup. But it was made with stankier older beans, and the smell was so bad
that some restaurants refused to sell it. But we always loved it. This to me is the equivalent of that. Now I’ve had natto in Japan before and I haven’t liked any of them except for this kind that
my friend recommended with egg on top and you
mix it into your rice. We went to Mito city to
film an amazing meat video which you might have already
seen by now, I’m not sure, and this is apparently the city for it. They’re the ones that almost invented it. So we’ll go ahead and crack into this! I have laid out a little bit
of stuff on the side here. I’m having two types of kimchi. This is (speaking in
foreign language) kimchi, which is like a radish kimchi. This is the Japanese
version, and it’s terrible! What can I do? And this is the other kimchi
I got from the supermarket, which is equally terrible and it’s been in the fridge for ages, let me just tell you guys, in an attempt to age it. Because when you live in Korea, you know what good kimchi is. It’s been in the fridge
since 2019 (laughs), since October! And I can’t get it to
taste right, you know? And I have a soft boiled
egg, which is delicious. I’ve got these two hay things. What am I supposed to do, you guys? Ah, living overseas. The joy! You really learn how to accept
that you’re a total idiot and don’t know anything and go, I am willing to learn. So let’s find out. I’m only gonna open up one of these because I think there’s two
little natto bobs in here. It came with what looks
like shoyu and mustard, I’m just gonna read the packaging, which is unusual to me. I don’t usually see this kind of a sauce. Oh (speaking in foreign language). Focus, darn you! ♪ One’s going back in the fridge ♪ ♪ Simon that’s for you ♪ ♪ He’s gonna be like
that’s literally okay ♪ ♪ And I was like we
should totally try it ♪ ♪ And Simon was like I don’t want to ♪ (funky music) All right ladies and
gentlemen, here we go! Let’s find out what the
heck is inside here. Just so many ancient burial
ground things happening here. Whoa. Hang on a second. What am I seeing right now? This is so, wait. Oh my gosh. It’s literally fermenting
inside of the hay the way they did it in the olden days. Wow, that is in-frickin-tense. Like does that not look appealing to you? It looks awful, right? Whatever, I’m gonna eat it you guys. Okay so I’m just gonna scoop some. Oh god, so sticky. I’m gonna scoop some out. I don’t think you guys can properly see what’s occurring here. Gonna emphasize the stringiness of this, how when you try to get a hold of it. Here we go.
(intense music) Oh my god it’s so slippery now. Wow. No. This is the best natto I’ve ever had. (victorious music)
Wow, mm. Holy shit, it’s so good! Normally it’s so pungent and slimy, but this is seriously amazing. I’m really sorry for how gross this looks. Wow. Oh my gosh, it’s genuinely so much better than the rest of the natto I’ve ever had. – [Simon] You had your
own yesterday, girl, you can’t take my natto! It’s natto fair. – Maybe it will natto be your thing. – [Simon] Well, we
better natto give you any ’til I try it! – That’s natto going to be an option. Your go! (clock ticking) – [Simon] I do natto honor your bad puns. – I think you already said that! That’s natto enough! – Why are you so close
to my rice and my natto? ‘Cause this is me right now. Look at this. – I’m natto to tell you! That’s not enough room by the way. – Not enough? I need more big bowl? What? Oh boy. Oh look at it all sticky! What? This is it, just like that? How do I? – [Martina] Right, that’s
exactly my reaction! – What am I supposed to do here? – [Martina] Right. So many questions. – Wow.
– I know! I was by myself going what
am I doing with my life? – [Simon] I don’t think
this is a one person job. – [Martina] Well it was! – Oh look at all that sticky icky. Stringing everywhere. Wow. All right! Look at all this stringy, disgusting. This just looks so unappealing to me. I have no idea why sticky food is such a big thing in Japan. This and okra and (speaking
in foreign language), I don’t get the appeal. Okay so pour some of this
(speaking in foreign language). If you could hide the flavor
with some other sauces. Did you put any mustard on? – No.
– No mustard, just like this? – [Martina] I just did the
(speaking in foreign language). It all sunk to the bottom and I struggled to pick up a single piece! (Martina laughing) – Hang on, hang on! – [Martina] Isn’t it crazy? It’s like an optical illusion. It’s like–
– I thought this was all sticky! – [Marina] No it’s not! It’s so crazy, it makes the rice slippery. It lubes up every grain of rice! – I don’t want lube-y rice! – [Martina] You’re making it worse! You’re mixing it, now they’re gonna sink to the bottom and you’ll never find them. – Now I’m gonna scoop it in my mouth! Here we go. (clock ticking) Yeah, that’s not bad at all!
– I know! – Like earthy.
– Right, right! – So nutty. – [Martina] It doesn’t taste
funky though at all to me. I mean your batch might be
different than my batch, right, I need to try it to be honest. Because I’m just saying. It’s been taking–
– You need to try nothing! Keep reading your (speaking
in foreign language), stay away from my nattos. – Mm! – [Simon] Does it taste the same? – Mm hmm. – [Simon] Good. Now, step away from the natto. You gonna pick these out of here? – [Martina] No, I’m just
gonna have some rice. ‘Cause rice is life. – [Simon] Rice is life. We have some brand new,
really high quality rice. – So Simon’s having the natto and he’s natto sharing any with me. So I’m gonna have some rice, and this is (speaking
in foreign language). We actually get this from a
tiny little soybean place. – [Simon] Soybean farm! – Yeah, right there. So this place, there’s the logo! We actually found this
out from our friends, Lucine and Ikka, who came to visit and they went there for
her birthday every year and we were like oh my gosh! And when you go in, it
looks like a restaurant, but around you there’s kind
of vats, and it’s miso! So if you guys have
seen my miso soup video, I talk about how there’s
different colors of miso. Think of it like light miso is more sweet like peanut butter and
honey, same colors, right. And the darker you get,
the more it’s saltier like a molasses or a soy sauce. Oh, are you trying to eat natto? – [Simon] I’m getting distracted! – I’m natto trying to do that! – So, this is special natto from Ibaraki, which supposedly invented natto. – [Martina] Yeah, and so
what you’re watching now, everybody, is the we didn’t
know we liked natto edition. – [Simon] Yeah, I think it’s
the convenience store natto that’s tough. Right, if you have the low quality stuff. – Well I tried to buy high quality natto from, what’s it called,
department stores and stuff. This is like nothing I’ve
ever had before in Japan. I’ve had natto before and
it’s usually quite funky and stinky and stringy, but this just tastes
like really good beans. This was from Mito Station. – I’m definitely a nut-o for natto! – Oh boy. Boo! – [Simon] Be honest with me. You didn’t think that
we were gonna like natto as much as we did, right? This was actually really quite good! So good that we don’t have any bloopers because it was just a
perfect take start to finish. If you do wanna see an extra video, make sure you check out Martina’s take on how to make (speaking
in foreign language). I don’t know how that
man is in that video, he doesn’t look like me at all.

100 thoughts on “Natto: The Stringy, Slimy, Superfood of Japan

  1. I tried convenience Store natto and hated it… now I'm intrigued about this original style ibaraki natto… guess I'll have to travel to Japan!!

  2. Don't cha wanna foam up the natto? Also, I would recommend a some sliced green onion , and if you want to be really decadent put in some diced takuan to counter the kimchi.

  3. I can't eat stinky foods like Natto. My family on my mom's side loves Limburger cheese and I can't do it, my stomach gets all knotted up just at the smell and even now sitting here I can feel it twisting and threatening to kill me if I try it. Also, I'm not a fan of beans in general as well being a low carb person and beans aren't so hot on that diet.

  4. I was looking up on the Natto from Ibaraki, apparently how they open it is to only cut the outer hay bundle and not both so you can get all the Natto out who knew! 😀 ( I also think the inner bundle is suppose to be a bowl for the Natto, maybe?)
    I never had natto I probably won't until I go to Japan and try it! Natto here in Canada isn't the best probably…

  5. Can i just say how much i love you guys? I've been watching since about 2013 and your content always makes me smile. If im having a bad day or panic attack, your content reminds me everything is okay. I love how you both keep it real and haven't shied away from sharing how ya'll cope and deal with life. Thank you for being so awesome!!!!!

  6. you need to stir/mix natto about 40 times before pour it over rice or mixing with other stuff (soy source / masterd). that's a way to have natto. 🙂

  7. My Japanese boyfriend: eat some natto.
    Me: No.
    Japanese boyfriend: babe it’s healthy.
    Me: No.
    After watching this video: Still no.

    Great video, but can’t do it 😂😂

  8. When I lived in Nagasaki I haaaaated natto but it was always the convenience store or supermarket kind. Next time I have a chance, I’ll try some wrapped like that if I can find it!

  9. 正しい(普通の、もしくは一般的な)食べ方を紹介してほしかったな。

  10. Would anyone happen to know where in Tokyo you could buy the specific brand of natto Simon and Martina are using? Alternatively, could anyone romanize the name of the brand so I could try researching myself? Thank you!

  11. Make your own kimchi. It is super easy and it lets you tailor it to your tastes. Look up some Maangi videos.

  12. I'm looking forward to seeing how you deal with brain fog and waking up…I don't have serious brain fog but depression does give me some brain fog. Depends on the day…some days its better some days its worse. And I'm horrible with waking up…I just want to sleep forever because sleep = no pain and misery.

  13. Watching you open the confusing wheat wrapping made me think about you showing us how the onigiri package is supposed to be unwrapped. What if like the packaged onigiri with the pull tabs, the wheat wrapping actually had some secret pull tab that would have neatly spread the natto out onto the rice?

  14. I tried natto sushi from one of my favorite sushi restaurants so that I could say that I’ve tried it. They warned me about but I told them I was well aware of what natto was. I ate all of it but it definitely was not something I would get again. I wouldn’t be opposed to trying it fresh from the source like they did because I do think that would make a difference.

  15. I wonder if I'd like natto because I cannot consume okra at all. Too slimy. Okra is also common here in the Philippines.

  16. I just can't… Can't imagine being able to eat that. I have such texture issues and the VISUAL on that makes me think of really unpleasant things.

  17. I’ve never seen anything like this before! It definitely looks very healthy, and like it would do you all kinds of good.

  18. My husband loves natto plain and the never covers up the funky flavor, where as I don't like the funk and would like to cover it up with stuff. It's hard to find artisanal natto, we also don't like the styrofoam packaging of supermarket natto (not recyclable here).

  19. We tried to use natto as a punishment in a drinking game… Turns out I really like convenience store natto! The funky taste kinda reminded me of nutritional yeast in a way… That semi cheesy flavour

  20. You're supposed to remove it from the container, into a small bowl or dish and stir it ~100 times first. It creates the stickiness and "strings". You then add the sauce and stir some more, approx. 20+ times and then do the same with the mustard IF desired. That kind of natto is the BEST!!! Haven't had that since I lived in Japan years ago!

  21. Not going to lie, that looked absolutely delicious to me, and now I am frantically looking for a way to find Natto like that in Canada 😍😍😍🥰 Yum Yum!

  22. Hey Martina sometimes to get store bought kimchi a little more sour I leave it outside the fridge at room temp for a couple days and that helps quite a bit of you wanna try 😃

  23. Quite surprising! I still haven't tried It, I'm afraid of disliking it and wanting to throw it away. Japan makes me not want to waste things

  24. My brain is really turned off by the sticky foods but I also have this thing where I’ll try almost anything at least a little so natto is still something I’d try… but honestly I fear the STICKY! Hopefully I can find some good natto online to try someday

  25. Fermented foods like “natto” and “kimchi” are considered good for the body.

    The same is true for “yama_imo”, which is the raw material for “Tororo”.

    Fermented foods such as "natto" and "miso" improve the intestinal environment.

    As a result, it increases your resistance to disease.

    Some doctors say that "Tororo" is effective in protecting against viruses.

  26. I understand it's a superfood but I just can't stand that smell!!! 😗
    I eat many different things but I just can't take it shame!!!

  27. How do you get a soft boiled egg to turn out this way? 3:00

    Thinking about it, the only way I can think of is immediately putting it in cold water after you finish boiling it?

    Will try and report back >:)

  28. I looove natto, but why didn't you put it in a bowl and whip it up with the sauces first to get it all strands well activated?

  29. Aaaaahhh you gotta pour those natto in a separate bowl first! And mix it with the soy sauce and spicy mustard, keep mixing it for about 50-100 rounds THEN put it on the hot bowl of rice and meshi agare!

  30. In Ikejiri Ohashi there is a shop called Sendaiya where you can have all you can eat natto (8 different sorts) for 780¥!
    I used to avoid natto thinking it was nasty and once I tried it I fell in love! I can’t get enough of it now😍

  31. I am thoroughly into fermented food, so I bought a 12 pack of the highest rated natto from a UK Japanese market. I just want to say that my husband has eaten fried worms and raw maggots and didn't mind, but this natto, even mixed with egg, soy sauce, and rice, did him in. He just couldn't eat it. I felt like it came in it's own–we'll say snot but as an adult woman I'm thinking of something a bit more feminine–and we ended up throwing away 4 of the pots. The best I could do was mix it with an udon miso soup because udon is a bit slimy too; I did what I could, but I hit my limit. Watching your video gave me PTSD! On the other hand, I watched it while eating a chicken sandwich with my homemade kimchi on it (Delicioso!) so we're even 😀 <3

  32. Really?! That natto was good? I’m totally surprised really :)…. I live in Singapore. I bought Natto from Japanese Department store here for science purpose. Had really bad stinky and smelly experience with it….Didn’t like it really….But I will try the Natto from that prefecture when I visit there next time ☺️

  33. It's kind of hard to look at the subtitles when all the korean words are replaced with "speaking foreign language".

  34. I’m Japanese and I wish you got someone to tell you how to eat natto before you filmed this video. You’re supposed to put them into a separate bowl, put the Tare and mustard and stir it until it gets more stringy, and then pour it over rice. It’s fine if you’re choosing to eat it as you are, but just saying.
    Oh and Kamakurayama Natto is an expensive brand of natto that you can find in supermarkets in Tokyo. I recommend you try, it’s really good too!

  35. Random question has Simon stopped eating a lot of soy since moving to Japan? Because Japan Simon looks like he would give korea Simon a Melvin then a hurts donut then a wet willy n steal his girl 😋

  36. When I traveled to Japan in High school my host family tried to freak me out by giving me a sampling of weird foods, Natto being their piece de resistance, sucks for them because I ended up loving Natto lol

  37. Finally an upload that says something positive about natto! Most natto related uploads by foreigners give natto a bad name! 😛 By the way, I love your natto jokes and can natto have too many natto jokes!

  38. Reminds me of corn snot (a fungus that grows on corn) which BTW it's also highly nutritious. Thank you for being so lovely, inspiring us to try new things and help us deal with stuff <3

  39. Hey, you guys who live in the heaven of availability of cultures. I'm soo jealous! Koji, natto, rice yeast balls, nukadono, all the little Fishies, squids, fermented shrimp etc…. As a fellow zebra I'm very focused on gut flora. And make all that stuff myself. Minus Natto that I haven't ordered the bacteria for yet. Not only is it so much better than store bought. It's cheaper. I mean, you could BATHE in kimchi (ouch) and natto if you want 😊😏

  40. I want to hear what you guys have heard about the coronavirus while living there? Are people worrying? Are YOU worrying?? Stay safe there please b/c apparently Japanese have NO idea how to treat this new virus going around.

  41. Idk if this is helpful but The way my grandma taught me to prepare it was in a separate bowl or usually the square white container it comes with u mix the natto with both sauce packets and a little bit of soy sauce then mix mix it until it's kinda foamy (I know) lol and then lay it over your rice and top it off with a little bit more soy sauce and chopped green onions. I love it, it's one of the most nostalgic memories I have of my Japanese grandmother.

  42. Oh my god Martina your editing was on freaking point I laughed so hard at this video!! I love natto, eat it all the time in the states ^…^

  43. I would love to try natto! I've seen natto prep videos where they kinda mix it up vigorously with the sauce and mustard, then pour it on rice with chopped negi.

    Also, if you don't like store bought kimchi, then I would recommend Maangchi's kimchi recipe. I make a huge ass batch every few months and it's so good! It's turned me into a total kimchi snob lol.

  44. I'm Natto sure about this one. drum for cheesy joke In all honest, the smell might ruin it for me. But if I get the chance, I will give this a try.

  45. I've yet to try natto so this video sort of ruined my plan to start with the convenience store kind because now I just want to have THIS 😂

  46. "Who is dis?" That flashback had me cracking up. I love learning the traditional ways of doing things and how things are made, buying it wrapped in the hay is a really cool experience.

  47. Today I discovered something funny I think y'all would appreciate. My current jar of kimchi came from Walmart rather than the Asian market and it actually has an expiration date on it… it "expired" last month. Sorry but what?? Expired kimchi is an oxymoron. It can't even be that old, kimchi doesn't last that long in my house xD

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